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  • Ryun - Tuesday, August 14, 2012 - link

    I would rather AMD just lower the price of the 7950 as a consumer, but coming from their perspective it probably makes more sense to increase performance but keep the price the same. Reply
  • RussianSensation - Tuesday, August 14, 2012 - link

    Previous MSRP was $449.99, then $349.99 and now it's falling to $329.99.

    The thing is you don't have to get a reference 7950B with an overvolted BIOS. There are plenty of after market 7950 cards that can hit 1.1-1.15ghz with 1.15V for example. MSI TwinFrozr III and Gigabyte Windforce 3x 7950 cards come to mind and both can be purchased on Newegg, Amazon, Superbiiz for $320-330 or sometimes even $310. This way the consumer gets the best of all worlds:

    1) Upgraded cooling to reduce noise and better handle overclocking above 925mhz;

    2) Better binned Tahiti chips (esp. in the case of the TF3) that can overclock well on much lower voltage;

    3) The power consumption increase is a lot less dramatic with cream of the crop 7950 cards that can hit 1.1ghz+ with voltages way under 1.2V. It would make sense that the reference 7950B cards would get the worst possible Tahiti chips since reference design isn't really made for much overclocking headroom.

    It will be interesting to see how GTX660Ti compares since at 925mhz, HD7950 is roughly 5-6% behind the 7970 which is just 3-4% behind the 670.
    Reply
  • just4U - Tuesday, August 14, 2012 - link

    Ryan sort of leads readers to believe 7950 is well behind the 670. I'd always thought it was within a 5-10% margin and with these new incarnations would lessen the gap even more. Not that it matters. It's still (imo) 680 670/7970 then the 7950... and current prices reflect that. Reply
  • RussianSensation - Wednesday, August 15, 2012 - link

    Ya, that's because if you saw how the GPU Boost reacts, it doesn't stay pegged at 925mhz as would be the case with a manually overclocked 925mhz 7950. This is why the average increase in speed is only 5-6% on the 7950B as opposed to 10-12% you'd see on the regular 7950 manually overclocked to 925mhz. Reply
  • CeriseCogburn - Saturday, August 25, 2012 - link

    This card is a stupid amd brain fart, right ? I mean all you freaks claim all the amd fans OVERCLOCK or they wouldn't be buying these high end cards....
    So were you lying or is amd stupid as dirt ?
    Reply
  • raghu78 - Wednesday, August 15, 2012 - link

    well said. Factory overclocked cards like Sapphire HD 7950 950 Mhz edition have very good cooler design, enthusiast friendly features like Dual BIOS for aggressive overclocking and excellent binning. These cards overclock to 1150 Mhz or higher speeds with a bit of voltage tweaking. And here we are talking about completely moot points. clock for clock HD 7950 is 3 - 5% slower than HD 7970. As for performance GTX 670 and HD 7950 are competitive when overclocked. the Sapphire HD 7950 950 Mhz edition can be had for USD 350 at newegg. so generally HD 7950 has better price perf and similar overclocked performance. Reply
  • skgiven - Sunday, August 19, 2012 - link

    Good points.
    I don't see any place for this card in the existing market. It's basically competing with itself, or bespoke/non-reference manufacture versions of the card, and I don't think it compares well against those. Why annoy your partners by trying to elbow in an unwanted reference design?

    The extra speed really does come at a price, not cash but a 1.125 base Voltage. This is very high (we are talking about the same territory as the first HOT Firmi's), and an extra 25W is a lot. We have come to expect improved efficiency with refreshes, not a 12.5% increased power requirement for a mere 6% performance improvement. Just a bad card that looks even worse against the 660Ti's load power requirements. I would consider a manufacturer's bespoke implementation of a HD7950 but not this B grade effort.

    "It will be interesting to see how GTX660Ti compares since at 925mhz, HD7950 is roughly 5-6% behind the 7970 which is just 3-4% behind the 670".

    But which GTX660Ti? Although there is a sort of basic spec/reference model there is a huge range of GTX660Ti cards from 925MHz to 1033MHz (so far). That's a performance range of over 11% (or 13% if you go by boost clocks). Some even have higher clocked GDDR5 and some have 3GB instead of 2GB. So there is plenty of diversity/competition. Some performances of the 'superclocked' cards even pass a reference GTX670 (Portal 2).

    AMD need a proper refresh, to regain the lead, not a supped up reference card...
    Reply
  • Jamahl - Tuesday, August 14, 2012 - link

    I agree that the power difference makes this somewhat a double-edged sword.

    I disagree with one part of your conclusion however - having compared both in your bench - http://www.anandtech.com/bench/Product/598?vs=645 the 7950 is starting to look a bit closer to the gtx 670, don't you agree?

    it's only 12% behind at 1920x1200, and really that outlying battlefield result (34% faster on the 670) seems to be making a lot of the difference. Remove that one and it's 9% - then what will happen if you switch out Dirt 3 for Dirt Showdown? Not much in it all of a sudden.
    Reply
  • RussianSensation - Wednesday, August 15, 2012 - link

    Exactly. Also a lot of 7950s scale well past 1.1ghz and there are certain games not in the test bench that run well on AMD cards: Sniper Elite V2, Anno 2070, Bulletstorm, Serious Sam 3, SKYRIM with mods, Risen Dark Waters. Reply
  • bill4 - Tuesday, August 14, 2012 - link

    "Until such a time where the competitive landscape changes, the 7950 will continue to be well behind its next-closest competitor, GTX 670"

    Umm, yeah, and it's also well behind it in price too. Like, $80-$100. Comparing them is stupid, so why did you do it? Compare it to a 560 Ti or something if you just have to compare it to something from Nvidia. This thing will fight the 660 Ti, and guess what, it'll compete well!

    Reviewers really seem to have it out for AMD lately. I dont think Ryan does, I think it was just a clumsy review.

    This seems a little pointless, but by the same token so is Nvidia's boost and reviewers love that. The bottom line is 6% more on some bar graphs makes the 7950 look better to some buyers, and thats why they did it. Nvidia's cards are auto overclocking, so they were gaining an unfair advantage in "stock" reviews. No more.

    Nvidia started all this with their boost, I applaud AMD competing.

    BTW, zero mainstream reviewers have yet addressed the obvious and fundamental issue that Nvidia is (surely) cherry picking their review samples, which with boost means it is actually performing better than the cards the public will buy (the Way AMD's boost works it isn't the case for them). This amazes me, as it was literally the first thing that came to my mind when reading first reviews of Nvidia's new cards. Nvidia has the media in it's pocket.
    Reply
  • bennyg - Wednesday, August 15, 2012 - link

    Agree that 7950 is better price/perf than 670. But;

    Reviewers can only review what they have in their rigs. If Nvidia came out with an auto-OC feature and AMD didn't... tough for AMD but hardly "unfair advantage", remember most buyers don't OC, and everyone who bought a 670 has enjoyed their boosted clocks and frames.

    And before you go alleging NV is defrauding reviewers... "surely" you need some kind of evidence that shows retail cards are measurably slower than review cards (which remember are tested in stupidly-beefy-everything-else so the GPU is as unlimited by the rest of the system as possible). Surely everyone reviewing an Intel CPU and getting higher numbers than AMD isn't in Intel's pockets too... maybe the Geforce just "wins" the last 5 months? After AMD sold heaps of well marked up cards for the first 3 months of this year, remember.

    Things like this happening make me glad Apple didn't "invent" and patent the turboboost algorithm </lolapplebashing>
    Reply
  • prdola0 - Wednesday, August 15, 2012 - link

    Oh come on. Isn't it AMD who is trying desperately to hinder Nvidia's launch with an update which gives only 5% on average, yet it increases consumption by 20W and noise considerably too, and voids warranty if applied to older cards?

    Looking at Steam Survey, it is clear why AMD is so desperate. GTX680 has 0.90% share, while even the 7850 lineup has less, just 0.62%. If you look at the GTX670, it has 0.99%. The HD7970 has only 0.54%, about half of what GTX680 has, which is funny considering that the GTX680 is selling only half the time compared to HD7970. It means that GTX680 is selling 4 times faster.

    You can see that even with the absence of Nvidia's mainstream until tomorrow, Nvidia is outselling AMD massively. And that's why AMD is trying dirty tricks, like promoting 7970Ghz and then not really selling it afterwards, the same with 7750 and now this little bump to 7950, which we might not see in reality as well. Who's to guarantee, that the cards are really comming with AMD's current track record in mind? Noone is. And the poor fella deciding to buy a 7950 would have to be informed well enough not to buy an old 7950 with the old spect and actually be able to tell them apart in a store. Most won't be able to and they won't be getting what they see in the reviews, even though this cheat is just 5%.

    Peace.
    Reply
  • jabber - Wednesday, August 15, 2012 - link

    AMD/Nvidia are never too worried about total sales of their top of the range cards.

    It's the models below that in the $250-$75 range that pays the wages.

    These cards are the equivalent of the S Class Mercedes. Basically what you find in a S Class today filters down into what we drive in ten years time.

    Tech testers basically. Stuff thats in these cards will be then added into my 8770/9770 in due course.

    Six years ago who would have thought $30 GPUS would have 1GB of ram on them.
    Reply
  • prdola0 - Wednesday, August 15, 2012 - link

    Well then if Nvidia sells more S-class Mercedes than AMD sells mainstream cars, you could say that AMD is in trouble. No? Reply
  • jabber - Wednesday, August 15, 2012 - link

    So you are saying that Nvidia is selling far more $350 cards than AMD is selling $50-$250 ones?

    Well that would be amazing. Tech news of the century.

    Fact is I've never seen one of these top of the range cards in a PC that I know of AMD or Nvidia while they are being sold.

    I sometimes see them a few years after when they have filtered down via Ebay.

    They sell in very small numbers compared to the rest of the ranges.
    Reply
  • RussianSensation - Wednesday, August 15, 2012 - link

    That's non-sense. Only 4-5% of cards above $350 comprise the entire sales of a GPU maker. Already shown 100x. Using Steam Hardware survey to compare sales is not accurate. NV didn't even say that Kepler on the desktop gained market share in the latest earnings. They attributed most of their success to Tegra 3 and mobile Kepler contracts. Reply
  • CeriseCogburn - Saturday, August 25, 2012 - link

    Still, the Steam Harware Survey shows your little stupid amd pet getting it's blankity kicked.
    LOL
    Why so sad ?
    Reply
  • RussianSensation - Wednesday, August 15, 2012 - link

    HD7970 was 1 month behind but plenty of versions are for sale on Newegg and actually even better than AMD promised:

    - Prices well under $499
    - You still get 3 free games included, which wasn't part of the GE cards

    http://www.newegg.com/Product/ProductList.aspx?Sub...

    So essentially that's a faster card than all 680s except for GTX680 Lightning and it costs $30-50 less than the cheapest 680. What's not to like?

    Just because people are buying 4x as many 680s doesn't mean anything. They could be stuck reading reviews from March and haven't seen 7970 GE recapture the performance crown overall and surpass 680 in Dirt 3, SKYRIM, Batman AC, especially with 8AA.
    Reply
  • CeriseCogburn - Saturday, August 25, 2012 - link

    No one is listening - Steam Survey has proven it - nleat all you want, heck you're still bleating... amd sales SUCK for the card you are promoting....
    Here let me help you amd fanboy out of his mind on failing sales...
    The 660Ti is kicking because it STOMPS the 7870/7850 and barely costs more than 7870 and it matches and beats 7950 plenty of the time and as thejian has shown you in 660Ti thread 24/7/365 for 1920x1200 and ever more 1920x1080, and the 660Ti costs LESS than the 7950...
    nVidia hit the SWEET SPOT - jamming it right in and amd is going down in sales ever more - next Steam Survey.. you'll be WEEPING and cursing the fools for not taking your twisted advice...
    Happy gaming ! :-)
    Reply
  • CeriseCogburn - Saturday, August 25, 2012 - link

    LOL - " and thats why they did it. Nvidia's cards are auto overclocking, so they were gaining an unfair advantage in "stock" reviews. No more.

    Nvidia started all this with their boost,... "
    ROFL - HAHHAHAHAAH BWAHAHAHAHAAAA
    Why so sourpuss bill4, amd fanboy much ?
    Look, amd blew it badly on this card - it's a hot core housefire mess.
    My advice for the amd fan - go buy the average/regular 7950 and cross your fingers.
    Of course my real advice is quit being such and idiot and buy the 660Ti at this point.
    I mean that's a no brainer.
    Reply
  • Rick83 - Tuesday, August 14, 2012 - link

    And I thought that we were over that chapter with the last generation of cards.
    Oh well, let;s turn up that voltage and crank up those clocks, we can always get triple 8-pin pcie power!

    225 Watts in an upper mid range card is just a bit too much.
    Reply
  • bennyg - Wednesday, August 15, 2012 - link

    </IMO>

    If the card can do it, why not improve the primary functionality of this class of GPU, crunching graphics. If for some reason 200W is OK for you and 225W isn't... cue tada.wav now - don't upgrade it's BIOS.

    I've heard too the new model Viper gets no more MPG than the Gen 4.
    Reply
  • JPForums - Wednesday, August 15, 2012 - link

    225 Watts in an upper mid range card is just a bit too much.


    The 7950 isn't upper mid range. (At least in AMD's eyes.)
    High end - 79xx
    Upper Mid range - 78xx
    Lower Mid range - 77xx
    Low End - Higher end A-Series processors (76xx/75xx)
    Entry Level - Lower end A-Series/E series Processors

    I understand the confusion given the low end discrete market has been largely displaced by Integrated GPU's. I also have a hard time deciding whether the 7870 performs like a high end card, or the 7950 performs like an upper mid range card. I like to draw the line at the up coming GTX660(Ti). I wouldn't call my GTX670 mid range, but I wouldn't call any form of GTX660 high end. My guess is that the 7950B will slot in between the two in performance. If it doesn't then it will go down as a high end card that performs like an upper mid range card.
    I'm glad they revamped the 7950 as it had plenty of power headroom for a high end card and its performance was too close to the 7870. I just wish they would have named the new 7950/7970 - 7955/7975 (or if you prefer 7960/7980). They could still let the 7950 fade out. There is still no need for a new reference design. There would be no confusion when buying in the interim. It would accurately reflect the marginal upgrade in performance. Honestly with all the new model numbers assigned to old parts that both nVidia and AMD use to make products appear new and better, I can't imagine why either of them would choose not to rename a legitimately different part.
    Reply
  • JPForums - Saturday, August 18, 2012 - link

    It seems the 7950 trades blows with the reference GTX660Ti. It wins some and looses some. However, it suffers some pretty massive loses in games like Battlefield 3 and Shogun 2. However, it seems the 7950 has better resilience at higher resolution. Overall, it comes up short though, so it is a good thing AMD released the update. The 7950B, overall, seems to maintain a small margin of victory over the overclocked variants of the GTX660Ti, thus saving face as a high end card (even if barely). It will be interesting to see how well the 3GB GTX660Ti does. It doesn't have the asymmetric memory penalty that the 2GB variants have. Reply
  • n0x1ous - Tuesday, August 14, 2012 - link

    u mad bro? Reply
  • hechacker1 - Tuesday, August 14, 2012 - link

    With the voltage already set higher in the bios, I wonder how these cards overclock?

    I know they are low quality parts, but considering not every single one of these requires 1.25V, I bet some of them overclock really well. Plus you wouldn't have to resort to driver/bios hacks to get it running at a higher voltage.

    But I guess then you might run into the PSU limit of trying to power it.
    Reply
  • CeriseCogburn - Wednesday, August 29, 2012 - link

    Where's the big rant about amd's failing gpu production where their cores need extra voltage for a tiny OC ?
    LOL
    I thought we'd get ten pages of the "astute" amd fans who spent three years+ bashing nVidia's "process" since the - heck 4-5 years since the 200 series.
    Where did they all go when the amd crapship needs a giant voltage bump to come out barely above where it wsa before and WAY BELOW WHERE ALL THE AMD FANBOYS HAVE BEEN CLAIMING FOR ALMOST A YEAR IT PASSES ON OLDER LOWER STOCK VOLTAGE...
    Where's all the whining and moaners and laughing fools screaming housefire on amd's failing fire hot core production ?
    I guess they... I was going to say finally went looking for a job so they wouldn't have to whine about price all the time but the economy clearly nixes that...
    I guess I'll have to fill in for them...
    amd = 1.7% good cores
    amd= CEO's fled the housefires
    amd= another stupid move
    amd= no problem our fanboys will suck down and swallow the koolaid
    Reply
  • martyrant - Tuesday, August 14, 2012 - link

    It's pretty obvious why this is happening the way it is (and when), and why there is no name change. They're getting ready to compete with the gtx 660 that releases this month (supposedly) and instead of the time and money it would take to create a new card, they devised this BIOS "hack"/"update" as a response.

    Would like to see a GTX 660 review from here, as I think they're starting to pop up around the web (saw at least one already). While typically an ATi fanboy since the 9700 series (my first was a 7500, which predates that a bit) I've noticed that this round in the ring it seems to be in favor of nVIDIA (and while I've had a few great nvidia cards, I've most lately become accustomed to being able to use eyefinity).

    Seeing as nVIDIA now has 3+1 displays, I might give it a shot this time around--still waiting to decide on what to upgrade to--but being able to use up to 6 is quite nice in my opinion. With the price drop of the 7970 now it makes a lot of sense compared to the 670/680, but with the 660 coming into play soon we may see a new price/performance king. I just read a ton of horror stories on AMD's driver support for their top tier cards these days...

    Anyway, 660 review please!
    Reply
  • RussianSensation - Wednesday, August 15, 2012 - link

    HD7970 is now faster than 670 and 7970 GE is faster than the 680 overall:

    http://www.computerbase.de/artikel/grafikkarten/20...

    Take a 7950 and overclock it to 1.1ghz and see what happens to an overclocked 660Ti with MSAA enabled.
    Reply
  • CeriseCogburn - Wednesday, August 29, 2012 - link

    " I just read a ton of horror stories on AMD's driver support for their top tier cards these days..."

    LOL - reality bites
    Reply
  • gobaers - Tuesday, August 14, 2012 - link

    Dismayed to see the power and noise go out the window with this card. Yes, it's not as tangible as framerate charts, but for me, a card has to be quiet for me to buy.

    I just replaced my aging 8800GT SLI setup with a single GTX 560, and am amazed at how quietly the entire rig runs. It's breathing some new life into the old Sonata Plus.
    Reply
  • rarson - Tuesday, August 14, 2012 - link

    The 560 is a ~$120 card. This is $300+. So clearly you weren't in the market for one of these anyway. Reply
  • JlHADJOE - Thursday, August 16, 2012 - link

    His 8800GT SLI setup was considered top-end and cost at least $500 when it was new. I think he could easily be in the market for HD7950 or GTX670 if and when he chooses to do a full upgrade or new build. Reply
  • CeriseCogburn - Wednesday, August 29, 2012 - link

    He said it has to be quiet so forget 7970 and 7950 and 6970 and 6950. Reply
  • haukionkannel - Tuesday, August 14, 2012 - link

    It seema, that it would be better to reduce the boost voltage to 1.2 or even less. Then with good chip you would get the same performance as in here and would not hit the head to the top ceiling so hard...
    Allso there can be guite huge differencess between 7950 vs 7950 where one can keep running at the 925MHz longer than another.
    Reply
  • ratbert1 - Tuesday, August 14, 2012 - link

    " AMD is announcing that they will be releasing a new Radeon HD 7950 with higher clockspeeds. The new 7950, to be called the Radeon HD 7950"

    Did I miss something?
    Reply
  • silverblue - Tuesday, August 14, 2012 - link

    They probably should've called it the 7950 XT. Reply
  • MrSpadge - Thursday, August 16, 2012 - link

    No, you didn't. Ryan is just showing you how ridiculous it is not to give the new card a new name. HD7955 would have been perfect, given the usual meaning of their numbers. Reply
  • redeemer777 - Tuesday, August 14, 2012 - link

    You guys realize that a 7950 which easily overclocks to 1.1Ghz matches a 680 7970? Reply
  • Sufo - Wednesday, August 15, 2012 - link

    er... more like "Com'on really" people are still doing the old "overclocked card X can match stock clocked card Y" routine.

    Are you retarded? Do you think the high end cards do not overclock at all? People have been blowing past 1.3ghz with their reference 680s.

    I can't fathom the point you were trying to make with this point.
    Reply
  • silverblue - Wednesday, August 15, 2012 - link

    The point being - why spend $400 when you can save a hundred and overclock your card to the same speed. What if a specific card performs perfectly fine for your needs - why buy its faster brother?

    And less of the "retarded", please... all credibility gets blown out of the water when that particular gem pops up. Thanks.
    Reply
  • Sufo - Wednesday, August 15, 2012 - link

    Not entirely convinced that's what OP was getting at. You make a valid enough point, however it kind of goes without saying that if a cheaper card performs to the level you require then that is the card you should buy - I'm not sure we've learnt much new here.

    As for using language such as "retarded" - if it diminishes my credibility then so be it. You can either digest the points within the post and take them for what they are, or you can read them, feel that they were totally reasonable then throw them out the window as soon as you encounter some phrasing aggravating to your delicate sensibilities. You *could* do this, but ofc it would make you a retard.
    Reply
  • CeriseCogburn - Wednesday, August 29, 2012 - link

    He is. He brainfarted again. He said the same crap as the other tard, but for some reason, probably the retardation, he had to say it. Reply
  • CeriseCogburn - Wednesday, August 29, 2012 - link

    " The point being - why spend $400 when you can save a hundred and overclock your card to the same speed. "

    Are you RETARDED TOO ?
    Reply
  • Frallan - Wednesday, August 15, 2012 - link

    (sic!)

    Well wonderful 1/16th of a boost on the normal cards but still no 7950M what is AMD doing?
    Reply
  • CeriseCogburn - Wednesday, August 29, 2012 - link

    Clearing out crap cores and trying to STOP the endless crashing at stock their cards suffer from.
    Think "stability voltage tweak" disguised as an "upgrade".
    Reply
  • smithrd3512 - Wednesday, August 15, 2012 - link

    Its a very impressive card. I am curious what to see what the 7990 Radeon can do when it comes out this fall. Reply
  • tcool93 - Wednesday, August 15, 2012 - link

    I get so sick and tired of all the Nvidia fanboys who post their crap anymore.

    Funny how overclocking a card is now a big deal, yet its just fine when Nvidia sells overclocked cards, or uses proprietary game benchmarks to benefit their own cards.

    Nvidia is a thug run company, just like their users are.

    And if the AMD cards can overclock (and they do overclock by a lot), why not raise it. But no, the Nvidia fanboys can't have that, because it might make their cards not look so good.
    Reply
  • RussianSensation - Wednesday, August 15, 2012 - link

    Remember when EVGA GTX460 FTW 850mhz card was for sale on Newegg? imo that was fair to include in the HD6870 review since the 460 is a card a user can buy. But now that 7950 is for sale with 880-950mhz factory clocks (MSI TF3, Gigabyte Windforce 3x, Sapphire Dual-X), those cards are "cheating" and now 460's famous overclocking isn't applicable to the 7950? Interesting. Next thing we'll hear that MSAA is outdated and obsolete and that real gamers use TXAA..... Reply
  • raghu78 - Saturday, August 18, 2012 - link

    Exactly. These reviewers think we are all fools to believe a GTX 660 Ti competes with HD 7950 and overclock it further with voltage tweaking .

    clock for clock HD 7950 is 3 - 5% slower than HD 7970. its easily proven by comparing OC benchmarks of anandtech itself.

    http://www.anandtech.com/show/5476/amd-radeon-7950...

    So even if you overclock HD 7970 the relation holds true. HD 7970(1250) would be 3 - 5% faster than 7950 (1250). So people who bring the whole " the faster card can overclock too" are just silly. The problem is reviewers can't do anything which will piss off Nvidia. So they play by the 800 lb gorilla's rules. No reviewer has the guts to take a factory overclocked HD 7950, HD 7970, GTX 670, GTX 680 and push it to their maximum speeds with voltage tweaking. This will clearly prove that the HD 7950 is the best value for you money and it will make the people who purchase GTX 680 cards for USD 600 look silly. Unfortunately in the real world Nvidia holds too much power and influence. so no reviewer will do that.
    Reply
  • Ryan Smith - Saturday, August 18, 2012 - link

    "The problem is reviewers can't do anything which will piss off Nvidia. So they play by the 800 lb gorilla's rules. No reviewer has the guts to take a factory overclocked HD 7950, HD 7970, GTX 670, GTX 680 and push it to their maximum speeds with voltage tweaking."

    Honestly, I resent that remark.

    What you propose is fundamentally unsound science. OVERCLOCKING IS NOT GUARANTEED. This especially goes for video cards as there's a wide variation in quality among GPUs.

    When reviewing a card we will gladly overclock it just to give you an idea of what we achieve. But outside of roundups where we're looking at several similar cards, we will never, ever directly compare an overclocked card to another overclocked card. To do so and then to draw conclusions from that would be irresponsible if not negligent. We would be one bad (or particularly good) card away from drawing the wrong conclusion.

    This brings us to testing methodologies and what is sound scientific testing. Overclocking is a wonderful bonus, but it is never something you should count on because a significant overclock cannot be guaranteed. The only thing that we can be certain of and thus the thing we should be testing on a typical card is its stock performance.

    This also extends to “virtual” SKUs where manufacturers are shipping factory overclocked cards; we must test and base our opinions around reference-clocked cards, since they represent the bare minimum of performance for an entire family.
    Reply
  • CeriseCogburn - Wednesday, August 29, 2012 - link

    Looks to me like clock for clock the 7950 is 8% slower, not 3-5.
    The xfx has oc ram
    33fps to 36 fps is about 8%, not 3 percent.
    Reply
  • tcool93 - Wednesday, August 15, 2012 - link

    Just so the non AMD video card owners know. This article is being biased about the noise. Due to the fact that they are using an AMD card that uses the hamster style wheel fan which is noisey. Most, if not all the 7950 cards use the single or better dual fan design which is MUCH quieter. Just check newegg if you don't believe me. They also run much cooler.

    But of course, that can't be reported because it might make AMD look good.
    Reply
  • raghu78 - Saturday, August 18, 2012 - link

    yeah you said it right. When they are so many custom cooler designs who is going to buy a ref cooler design which is louder. Actually I blame AMD. They should have sent a factory overclocked custom HD 7950 like Sapphire HD 7950 950 Mhz edition to reviewers and just told them to review it like the EVGA GTX 460 FTW edition. Reply
  • CeriseCogburn - Wednesday, August 29, 2012 - link

    I will, I am an amd penny pinching freak fanboy, so I will buy the supercheap extra discounted, egg only, powercolor crapster or the visiontek tinker... of course, because I'm getting my amd bang for the buck... even after the massive driving into the dirt 3 times nVidia did to amd, I'm not satisfied - I might wait for the real 680 nVidia delayed to get rich off amd's fail, to get a really cheap amd card, hopefully another billion in debt for amd that means cheapo cards for me and my fanboy bruhs. Reply
  • seasick - Thursday, August 16, 2012 - link

    that's a good move for amd
    and yeah why are people compairing gtx660ti with hd7950
    its the same situation as we've seen last year
    my hd7950 is a beast I just flashed the new bios and difference is just 3-5fps bt I oc that beast to sweet 1270mhz(with Arctic tt2) it even beats a gtx670 and touches the gtx7970ge
    and it costed me 319$
    and I agree that new hd7950 deserves a new name as well like 7955 or BoostEdition,which will give a clue to customers, what they are really buying ...(CON)
    Reply
  • CeriseCogburn - Wednesday, August 29, 2012 - link

    Plus $55 for the twin turbo actic, and another two or three hours to install, and probably thermal glue for the passive ram chip attachment.
    So $400 bucks at least, unless your time is worth nothing.
    Reply
  • MrSpadge - Thursday, August 16, 2012 - link

    1.25 V for 920 Mhz boost is totally ridiculous. My HD6950 is almost reaching this clock speed at 1.10 V - and that's on a 40 nm process. Granted you couldn't sell a card at such a tight clock speed tolerance, but AMD is not doing the majority of cards & users a favor here by aiming at the absolute worst chips. I hope manufacturers are using better binning & voltage settings. Absurd as it may seem, but a lower voltage would actually make the card faster (since it could turbo longer / more often).

    MrS
    Reply

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