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OC: Gaming Performance

Moving on to our gaming performance section, let’s see what our 15% overclock can do for gaming performance. Assuming the 7970GE’s performance continues to scale well with clockspeeds, we should see around a 10-12% real world performance gain.

Starting as always with Crysis, what was already an incredible lead for the 7970GE becomes increasingly absurd. The 7970GE OC sees a further 8% performance improvement here, pushing it past 60fps at 1920 and past 40fps at 2560. Against the stock GTX 680 it’s now leading by 35% on average framerates.

Minimum framerates on the other hand haven’t changed by nearly as much. Given what we know about PT Boost and Crysis’s love of memory bandwidth, it’s reasonable to assume we’re being held back by memory bandwidth limits here.

Moving on to Metro, the 7970GE once again gains 8-9% due to our overclock. The earlier 56W jump in power consumption at the wall makes it an expensive gain, but as it stands this is by far the fastest we’ve seen a single-GPU card perform at Metro.

With Batman we once more see gains of around 9% from our overclock. Even at 2560 our framerates are now in excess of 70fps.

With Portal 2 being one of the 7970GE’s biggest defecits relative to the GTX 680, a solid overclock can help to close the gap but it’s not enough to eliminate it. Still, it’s enough to push the average framerate over 60fps at 2560 with SSAA. The overall scaling from the overclock also looks very good here, with the 7970GE OC picking up a larger than normal 11-12%.

Finally we have AMD’s other notable weak spot, Battlefield 3. Much like with Portal 2 overclocking can’t eliminate the GTX 680’s lead, but it can significantly cut into it. At 2560 and at 1920 with MSAA this is enough to push past 60fps, making for a solid 10% performance gain from overclocking.

OC: Power, Temperature, & Noise Final Words
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  • piroroadkill - Friday, June 22, 2012 - link

    There will be custom designs with nice quiet coolers flooding the market in no time.. Reply
  • raghu78 - Friday, June 22, 2012 - link

    http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/radeon-hd-7970...

    "There’s a silver lining on this one, though. Ahead of this review, I let AMD know about our acoustic concerns and the company claims that most partner boards will employ third-party cooling, not its reference configuration."

    So noise is not an issue at all. Cards like sapphire with dual x , gigabyte with windforce, powercolor with PCS+ have good cooler designs. Power will be more. But the Radeon HD 7970 Ghz edition frankly more than makes up for that with its performance at 1600p and multi monitor setups.

    If you are on a 1080p monitor and want perf/watt , price perf and a cooler setup go for custom GTX 670. For the rest who have 1600p or multi monitor frankly there is only one option - a custom Radeon HD 7970 card or a custom Radeon HD 7970 Ghz edition.
    Reply
  • CeriseCogburn - Saturday, June 23, 2012 - link

    Hogwash, the GTX 680's and GTX 670's are still SMOOTHER, and more enjoyable at high rez and multi monitor.

    Check the hundreds of reviews.
    Reply
  • Tuvok86 - Friday, June 22, 2012 - link

    AMD should have released a balanced 7970 in the first place, somewhere halfway in performance between the 7970 and GE. Now they have an overconservative card and an powerhungry monster Reply
  • Reikon - Friday, June 22, 2012 - link

    On page 3:
    "For AMD the 7970GE will be launching with the Catalyst 10.7 beta, while NVIDIA has released the 304.48 betas for the entire lineup."

    I think you mean 12.7
    Reply
  • Ryan Smith - Friday, June 22, 2012 - link

    Whoops. Thanks. Reply
  • fausto412 - Friday, June 22, 2012 - link

    Will these new Power Tune and overclocking advancements trickle down 6900 series cards to unleash more performance safely?

    What would prevent AMD from affective the 6990 with these new advancements?
    Reply
  • kyuu - Friday, June 22, 2012 - link

    These features would require a new BIOS. As far as I'm aware, AMD does not support flashing their cards with new BIOS. Anyway, there's nothing there that you can't acheive via normal overclocking anyway (asides from the slightly better chip binning). Reply
  • silverblue - Friday, June 22, 2012 - link

    ...Another Mention (of) Deterministic, it seems. Reply
  • gonchuki - Friday, June 22, 2012 - link

    Did you try reaching AMD to comment on the rather low performance ceiling on Skyrim? looks as if their drivers are way more CPU hungry than Nvidia's and that's why they are getting capped at a lower rate.
    Maybe that's what usually hinders performance in other CPU limited titles like WoW?
    Reply

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