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  • Tator Tot - Monday, March 19, 2012 - link

    On the first page, you make an error in the table saying the PCS+ is Triple Slot while the IceQ Turbo is Dual Slot; obviously this is backwards based on the photos. Reply
  • CeriseCogburn - Tuesday, March 20, 2012 - link

    How about the biggest error of all... no mention of the near paper launch - we get a pretend scenario that the 7870 and 7850 are somehow populating retail channels... no mention in the entire article of the terrible near non supply.
    Instead we get the reviewers wined and dined at Cebit and or GDC, where they are treated to the "unveiling", then handed special overclocked models, then we all get to pretend you could buy it up as of yesterday...
    Nope, egg had 2, one sold and the buyer commented that made 1 available (7870). Same thing earlier. 7850 wasn't any better.
    So AMD gets a giant pass on their near pure paper launch.
    Is that free weeks long yearly for 500 'reviewers/reporters' AMD posh Island Vacation bribe coming up soon or what - did they just get back from it ?
  • blanarahul - Tuesday, March 27, 2012 - link

    What is the use of scheduling? Is it only useful for compute or does it have usefulness in graphics also? Reply
  • warmbit - Tuesday, April 10, 2012 - link

    Here is the link to an interesting overview performance 7870 and 7850 of 5 Web sites competing Nvidia cards - GTX580 and GTX570 and penalties of the previous generation AMD - 6970 and 6950.

    Analysis of the results of the Radeon 7870 and 7850 in 12 games and 5 resolutions:

    You will know the relationship between average interest rates these cards and you will find out in which graphics card is better in the game and resolution.
  • LuxZg - Monday, March 19, 2012 - link

    You've put tripple width and 390$ for PCS, while you say otherwise in article. Tripple width and 390$ is mentioned in part about HIS card, so I believe you've mixed up the columns.. or at least part of data, as memory OC seems to be correct for both cards in table. Please review and correct as not to confuse readers.. Reply
  • CeriseCogburn - Wednesday, March 21, 2012 - link

    I see this 7870 is virtually the same as the GTX 570, and when I check the prices a GTX570 is $260-$289 and the 7870 is $369 minimum.
    This card at it's current price is no value at all.
  • Zebo - Monday, March 19, 2012 - link

    For comparison sake you should throw a $309 GTX 570 Classified in there. (which will beat it) But OC to OC is only fair. Reply
  • medi01 - Tuesday, March 20, 2012 - link

    If 7870 is overpriced, then what is GTX 580? Reply
  • Zebo - Tuesday, March 20, 2012 - link

    Cheaper than these cards and faster!
  • nevertell - Monday, March 19, 2012 - link

    On the 4th page:
    Numerous times before we’ve seen loud & cool cards, but it’s rare to come across a loud and quiet card.

    You should give the article to other editors before you publish it. Happens to myself all the time.
  • Zebo - Monday, March 19, 2012 - link

    I wish they were mistaken on the price. Reply
  • LuxZg - Monday, March 19, 2012 - link

    They were actually... not that it helps much ;-> Reply
  • Jephph - Monday, March 19, 2012 - link

    Don't worry, they fixed it.

    "Numerous times before we’ve seen loud & cool cards, but it’s rare to come across a quiet and quiet card.

    Now, it's not loud and quiet, It's just quiet and quiet.
  • doylecc - Monday, March 19, 2012 - link

    "but it’s rare to come across a quiet and quiet card."

    Perhaps we should try "cool and quiet", yes?

    "In spite of the large blower on the card and the temperatures we’ve seen, the IceQ Turbo well for itself,"

    Perhaps "...the IceQ Turbo does well for itself."

    Thanks for a very interesting article. I would also like to see an AMD OC v. Nvidia OC article.
  • nitrousoxide - Monday, March 19, 2012 - link

    "A loud and quiet card" --> "a quiet and quiet card"

    Gosh I just can't help laughing...
  • LuxZg - Monday, March 19, 2012 - link

    "OCCT on the other hand finally sees every card jump up above 50C, with both cards tying or beating the reference 7870 by a fraction of a degree."

    Aren't you talking about noise here? And not temperature? Tsk tsk ;)
  • Death666Angel - Monday, March 19, 2012 - link

    Especially in the OC section! I don't know how many people are looking at 7970 and 7870 cards, but I for one do like to know how much extra performance that money gives me, especially compared to 7870 OC'ed.
    As for the cards, they are good enough, but I hate seeing these anaemic factory memory overclocks or no overclocks at all.
    Two more things: Is there a chance you will add your OC results to bench in the future? And can you explain why the 7950 beats the 7970 in min. frames Crysis? Doesn't make sense to me. :-)
  • Ryan Smith - Monday, March 19, 2012 - link

    The 7950 only beats the 7970 in Crysis when you use the launch numbers for the 7970. It's been taken care of. Reply
  • Creig - Monday, March 19, 2012 - link

    "Idle noise levels are consistent. Both cards are ever so marginally quitter than the reference 7870 at idle."

    Nobody likes a video card that's a quitter. But I'm sure they'd love one that's quieter.
  • Roland00Address - Monday, March 19, 2012 - link

    I am curious how crossfire 7800 series cards compare to the 7900 series cards Reply
  • Ryan Smith - Monday, March 19, 2012 - link

    Good question. We'll answer it sometime in the next couple of weeks. Reply
  • Roland00Address - Tuesday, March 20, 2012 - link

    now I just have to wait for the results Reply
  • tijag - Monday, March 19, 2012 - link

    The launch date should be today, but i'm not seeing these cards available on any of the major retailers with any reasonable availability.

    Very disappointing. Hopefully there will actually be available inventory of these.
  • Peanutsrevenge - Monday, March 19, 2012 - link

    Please, for the love of god, stop putting an OC'd mid card against stock top card.

    All I ask is that you include the higher end cards OC'd figures in aswell when your mentioning the comparisson.

    I'm so sick of reading
    "Card X often equals and sometimes beats it's $x.xx pricier cousin"
    yes, until you make it fair and show the OC'd results for the other card.

    Either that, or don't point out the obvious and irrelivant information, just let us go and look @ Bench, which the clued up out of us here will do. You're just feeding the inept with misleading information.

    End Rant.
  • cjs150 - Monday, March 19, 2012 - link

    I disagree what it shows is that with a bit of tweaking you can get the same or better performance that a stock higher end card but at a lower price. This is important when many of us want to stick to a budget and get as much bang for our buck as possible.

    Personally I would just stick a watercooling block on the standard card and overclock the hell out of it - and I get lower noise than these fancy cards
  • Iketh - Monday, March 19, 2012 - link

    Yes but you need to also show the other card's OC results... this is the point Reply
  • Frallan - Tuesday, March 20, 2012 - link

    Yes Pls - however the only 78XX waterblock Ive seen so far costs 90€ (aboutish 110 USD I believe) and thats just to expensive.

  • doylecc - Monday, March 19, 2012 - link

    I think the point of comparing less expensive OCed cards to more expensive stock cards is value. If you can get the same performance (or nearly so) as the expensive stock card, but for substantially less money, then the cheaper OCed card may be the way to go, for the budget conscious.

    Of course, if money is no object, then just get the top card and OC it.

    What I would like to see is an article comparing the OCed cards from both companies with each other (and their base stock cards for reference). Then show them in CrossFire and SLI. That is where you will see the maximum performance.
  • Death666Angel - Monday, March 19, 2012 - link

    I am all for OC benchmarks, but I would also like to see OC 7950/7970 results. Your argument makes no sense, because why would you OC a cheap card but not a more expensive one? Reply
  • hieuhef - Monday, March 19, 2012 - link

    Because not everyone can spend $450 on a card? Did you read what you responded to? Reply
  • Death666Angel - Monday, March 19, 2012 - link

    Then why include the 7970 at all since that isn't an option? Just so people can compare their e-peens against higher end cards which in turn can be overlocked so the comparison is moot anyway? Reply
  • kyuu - Monday, March 19, 2012 - link

    The point is to show that you can achieve equal or better performance to a higher-end stock card with this particular card, that is the one being reviewed, over clocked. You're making up some theoretical audience that is somehow misreading it and arguing that they're being mislead, but I don't think those people actually exist. No one is claiming you can't over clock the more expensive card, nor is it really relevant. Reply
  • kyuu - Monday, March 19, 2012 - link

    Sorry, it was actually the OP who imagines there is some "inept" audience misreading it, not you, so my apologies. However, there's still no need to include OC figures for every single card (making a huge, messy, difficult-to-read graph). This article is about two particular products. They are then compared to other stock cards, with some OC figures presented for good measure. There's nothing to complain about here. Reply
  • Ryan Smith - Monday, March 19, 2012 - link

    Funny enough several people asked why we didn't include the 7970 in our This Just In article. Reply
  • Iketh - Monday, March 19, 2012 - link

    how is comparing an OC card to a higher stock card determining value???? You have to compare to the higher card's overclock... why is this difficult to understand? Reply
  • Ryan Smith - Monday, March 19, 2012 - link

    Hi Peanutsrevenge;

    The primary goal we have with our overclocking comparison isn't to say any given card is more or less superior because of how far it can overclock, but rather we're trying to give the appropriate framing and significance to our overclocking results. An overclocked 7870 will never be better than an overclocked 7950; the fact that an overclocked 7870 can reach the performance of a stock 7950 is what's important. The only question I'm trying to answer here is "what new performance level can you reach with overclocking".

    Ryan Smith
  • bassface2001 - Monday, March 19, 2012 - link

    I agree with the original sentiment that overclocked versus stock is a silly comparison. Since whatever is stock can be overclocked as well. Budget reasons don't add validity to this type of comparison either. If you're limited by budget then it doesn't matter how close or far away an overclocked product is to the next one up when you can't afford the next step up.
    What may be of interest would be percentage overclocks between different levels of product. This then answers the question of "what new performance level can you reach with overclocking" with fair comparisons acrosss the board.
    So if the entry level can be overclocked by 5% the midrange by 25% and the highend by 10%. The mid range may present the best value over the other two or it may not but the reader has a like with like comparison to make an informed decision.
  • Death666Angel - Monday, March 19, 2012 - link

    "The only question I'm trying to answer here is "what new performance level can you reach with overclocking"."
    Fair enough. :-) And you are doing a great job btw.! But that just isn't the type of question I would set regarding OC ability of different cards. :-)
    For that reason, I like the overclockersclub.com reviews, because they have a database of all overclocked cards and compare new overclocked cards against old overclocked cards. It's still not technically "apples to apples" since overclocks vary by a lot. But it is more useful to me and more what I expect than anandtechs treatment of overclocks. :-)
  • Ryan Smith - Monday, March 19, 2012 - link

    It's fair criticism.

    The reality is that we're sticklers for the scientific method, which means we need as few variables as possible. To keep a DB of overclocked video cards we would need to rebench every overclocked card every time a new driver with a measurable performance impact came out. This isn't practical for purposes of time, nor for that matter do we keep these retail cards on hand. The alternative would be to compare overclocks across different drivers, and we would rather give you fewer accurate numbers than to make such a comparison.

    Ryan Smith
  • Frallan - Tuesday, March 20, 2012 - link

    Thanks for the replys Ryan,

    first its very nice to have the dudes acctually sitting with the hardware and performing the tests communicating with us like you are.

    Scondly regarding the discussion at hand I just want to give you my support since it is very valueble to have the tests as you do them. This is bc I will be looking for the best possible effect out of a given budget framework since I dont have the funds to buy whatever I want whenever I want it.

    Keep up the good work and Anandtech will remain my main tech reference site another 10 years.

  • CeriseCogburn - Wednesday, March 21, 2012 - link

    But for a long period of time you kept the very same drivers in many released articles, listed right along, one run for AMD drivers was over a year long as I recall or it certainly seemed, as well as for nVidia, and those were recent. you were asked about it and claimed the 10.3a drivers or whatever it was, were nearly identical to never ones so you weren't going to redo all the tests.
    So your excuse holds no water, you never updated all the time even in regular release benches.
    If we accept your answer, it invalidates probably 90%+ of all your reviews.
  • CeriseCogburn - Wednesday, March 21, 2012 - link

    It's reasonable if here they take the short time to assemble the "overclocked chart" they obviously have the data for with all the prior released cards they include in the article, and show one fair game with the respective included cards all OC'ed.
    Without that there is no real justification, nor is it fair or equitable, or honest.
  • Peanutsrevenge - Tuesday, March 20, 2012 - link

    Thanks for the reply Ryan.
    From all the replies to replies, I think it's clear.
    You'll never be able to please everyone all the time :D

    Still, nice review and always come to Anandtech when I'm looking for trustworthy information.

    Keep up the good work and good luck with us whiners ;)
  • CeriseCogburn - Wednesday, March 21, 2012 - link

    I think that's just a cop-out. One chart of a neutral game with all the cards OC'ed would be good enough to appease everyone. It would solve the problem. Reply
  • CeriseCogburn - Wednesday, March 21, 2012 - link

    Yes, as in the case of the highly overclockable GTX460 EVGA the complaints never ended when it was included without other cards being overclocked.
    It appears they excused themselves then, and decided promoting amd OC cards in a (near paper and completely unmentioned in the entire article) launch now was iresistable.
    I noted the excuse, that AIB's would be bypassing stock cards...(for the most part) - which isn't correct either - as the truth is permission for OC cards at launch is the near difference from the usual standard.
    All of them will still issue stock and OC for more money 'for the most part'.
    I seriously doubt you can find a single launch in the entire archive that OC's the two launching ( or even one) nVidia card and nothing else.
    That of course proves nothing since this is a very special case, one that AMD has approved.
  • johnpombrio - Monday, March 19, 2012 - link

    This will probably be the last AMD release before NVidia comes out with their GTX 680 on March 22. AMD has been making up for the different release times by putting as much product out there as possible while NVidia tries to fix their manufacturing yields. It will interesting to see what happens in the next 6 months.
    Let the games begin.
  • CeriseCogburn - Wednesday, March 21, 2012 - link

    Which isn't much product at all especially the 7870's and 7850's. Reply
  • MrSpadge - Tuesday, March 20, 2012 - link

    I keep hearing how great the SI GPUs overclock on stock voltage. However, that voltage is set to 1.2 V. From my point of view that's already a lot - my HD6950 on a 40 nm process runs at just 1.10 V. It reminds me of AMDs 45 nm CPUs which are set to painful 1.40 V and reviewers are pleased with their overclockability.. not withstanding the fact htat it should have been 1.30 V for better stock efficiency.

    In the same spirit I think the SI GPUs should get lower stock voltages.. higher efficiency and still plenty of head room.
  • Onus - Tuesday, March 20, 2012 - link

    That was a constructive discussion on the overclocking comparison. I think it is meaningful if only because it adds another data point to the "index" we all maintain when working on configurations or contemplating upgrades. Overclocking may be extremely variable, but if all of a handful of tech sites get only a 5% OC, that tells something.
    The power usage figures of the new AMD cards look great, especially considering the performance. Now I just hope prices can come down some.
  • CeriseCogburn - Wednesday, March 21, 2012 - link

    They have the data to include a neutral type game with all the cards overclocked, and it would be helpful and easily repeatable, and the excuse that every new driver would need to be used is refuted by the entensive archive here where old drivers were used for extensive periods of time.
    It appears bias or laziness and excuses is the real answer.
  • Cisephys - Tuesday, March 20, 2012 - link

    Any word on retail availability? Some 7850/7870 cards finally popped up on NewEgg this morning (or maybe late last night), but the PowerColor one there is not the PCS+ version, it's the stock, non-factory-overclocked one.

    Seems like a fairly clumsy launch... But then, I'm likely just impatient.
  • CeriseCogburn - Tuesday, March 20, 2012 - link

    Why didn't the article mention it's near barren ?
    Is this now 'just forgotten" ?
    Is AMD favored this much ?
    Really it is absolutely unbelievable the bribe must be spectacular.
    ( i believe it's the free Island Vacation AMD sponsors for 500 of these 'lucky reviewers" - it's an 'information and learning gathering' and 'fact finding mission', of course...
    It's actually missing from the entire article... the phrase paper launch let alone 'availability" is washed over as we are told AMD has after 'unveiling" two weeks ago 'released to retail '...
    So will this be another 2.5 months of near barren shelves ?
    How is it we hear nothing on this matter in the entire article... what sorry excuse will we be given - if any at all.
    There's no mention of manipulating the market with this underhanded tactic and early empty release either ...
    Sorry it's just inexcusable and no you're not impatient, we've been deceived.
  • CeriseCogburn - Wednesday, March 21, 2012 - link

    That excuse is beyond ridiculous, as the higher the cards level, the more likely it is one has a willing and avid overclocker.
    It's really getting deep in here. 6970 6950 both top cards of this level a gen back were proclaimed as highly valuable for the OC bias switch.
    I mean it's really, really deep in here, my chest is soaked and fear I might be drinking slop soon
    Let's just tell the truth,
    AMD fans love this, this time.
    But when the nVidia based GTX460 EVGA OC was included to trounce the amd cards in price/perf, the outcry was nothing short of enormous.
    Worse yet, we have just recently been treated to exclamation points on the 7970 20% possible on stock volt Oc'ing raves.
    It's really sad, now please, I'd like to not have to brush my teeth and gargle right now.

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