AMD Radeon HD 7970 GHz Edition Video Card Review

We have been documenting AMD's struggle to compete with the NVIDIA Kepler generation since it was introduced. Today AMD attempts to strike back with the Radeon HD 7970 GHz Edition. This video card features higher operating speeds and introduces AMD's version of GPU Boost. Will the performance justify a price of $499?

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Evaluation Method

We evaluate what each video card configuration can supply us in terms of a playable gaming experience while supplying the best culmination of resolution and "eye candy" graphical settings. We focus on quality and immersion of the gameplay experience rather than how many frames per second the card can get in a canned benchmark or prerecorded timedemo situation that often do not represent real gameplay like you would experience at home. Then we will follow with apples-to-apples testing in with minimum, maximum, and average framerates.

Test System Setup

We will be using a ASUS P8P67 WS Revolution motherboard, an Intel Core i7 2600k Overclocked at 4.8GHz, and 8GB of Corsair RAM.

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Drivers

For the AMD Radeon HD 7970 GHz Edition video card we are using Catalyst 12.7 BETA, which has not yet been released to the public. For the reference AMD Radeon HD 7970 we are using the Catalyst 12.6 BETA driver which was released on May 31st, 2012, along with the latest CAP 12.6 BETA.

For the NVIDIA GeForce GTX 680 video card we are using the latest ForceWare 304.48 BETA.

Below is a screenshot of GPU-Z after installing the AMD Radeon HD 7970 GHz Edition video card and the Catalyst 12.7 BETA driver.

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