And it’s finally been revealed. AMD’s latest high-end GPU model that is based on the ‘Tahiti’ chip has just been unveiled and it’s the fastest single-GPU card on the market. Which was to be expected but what are the performance gains that PC gamers can expect from it? According to the earlier leaks, Radeon 7970 was expected to be 60% faster than Nvidia’s GTX580. Sadly though, the card is not that much faster. There are cases where the gap between these two cards is almost around 50% and it’s definitely the faster single-GPU, but it’s nowhere as fast as we wished. Oh, and the card can’t touch Nvidia’s dual-chip offer, the GTX590, despite earlier rumors suggesting that it would be almost on-par with it.
VrZone gave Radeon 7970 a 9/10 rating, suggesting that Radeon has some excellent Overclocking headroom and that comes with fantastic GPU Compute performance. On the other hand, the card is priced at $549 USD so that’s a bit expensive, right?
AnandTech have included Crysis Warhead in their benchies and we can see that Radeon7970 offers around 20% better performance than Nvidia’s GTX580. The game runs with 50.3fps at 1920×1200 with max settings and 4xAA, so we can assume that it’s fully playable and enjoyable without any AA. Yeap, it’s finally a reality. Crysis is almost 60fps locked, though we wonder if there is any performance hit with the fan-made HD Texture Packs.
PCPerspective claim that the card offers 27% better performance – compared to GTX580 – in Metro 2033 at 1920×1080 and 34% at 2560×1600. In addition, PCPerspective claims that “The Tahiti GPU offers more than enough horsepower to push past the year-old GTX 580 and take the performance crown and is able to do so using less power than NVIDIA’s GeForce option as well“. Well done Red Team.
HardOCP claim that in Skyrim, Radeon HD 7970 is 18% faster than the Galaxy MDT GeForce GTX 580, an overclocked edition of Nvidia’s GTX 580 card. They also claim that Radeon 7970 is “worth it as an upgrade” and that “AMD has taken the performance crown back, and currently has the fastest single-GPU video card for PC gaming“
Guru3D has benched Crysis 2 with its official DX11 High-Resolution Texture Pack and witnessed a 12fps increase in 1920×1200 with max settings and 4xAA. The Guru’s conclude that “AMD finally has an answer at hand to dethrone the mighty GeForce GTX 580, and with a decent enough margin. The new GPU architecture seems to work out well and definitely is more capable then the last generation GPUs.“
Last but not least, TechPowerUp included STALKER: Call of Pripyat in their benchmarks and saw a 20fps increase from Nvidia’s GTX580 at 2560×1600 with max settings and 4xAA. In case you were unaware of, Call of Pripyat uses some advanced – and quite demanding – light shafts that have a huge impact on the game’s performance, so it’s nice to see that the game runs so fluidly with AMD’s latest card. They conclude that the card will be available on January 9th and that “AMD’s new flagship cruise past NVIDIA’s GeForce GTX 580 with a healthy 15% performance margin averaged over all our benchmarks – at 2560×1600, making it the fastest single GPU graphics card in the world“
AMD is back with a punch. It will be interesting now to see what Nvidia has in store for us and what performs gains will be introduced with Kepler. Until then though, AMD is the new king with the fastest single-GPU solution. Good play Reds.
John is the founder and Editor in Chief at DSOGaming. He is a PC gaming fan and highly supports the modding and indie communities. Before creating DSOGaming, John worked on numerous gaming websites. While he is a die-hard PC gamer, his gaming roots can be found on consoles. John loved - and still does - the 16-bit consoles, and considers SNES to be one of the best consoles. Still, the PC platform won him over consoles. That was mainly due to 3DFX and its iconic dedicated 3D accelerator graphics card, Voodoo 2. John has also written a higher degree thesis on the "The Evolution of PC graphics cards."