AMD HD 7950 Review

By on January 31, 2012
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Bridging the gaps.

Good: Performance better than GTX 580, close to HD 7970, Overclocked performance better than HD 7970, Custom heatsinks provide higher speeds and low temperatures
Bad: Price point may make it worse than competition, Fans can get quite loud
Price: AED 1,750
* The price is the Suggested Retail Price at the time of review. Please call a retailer to confirm the latest price for this product.

Starting off with the PowerColor HD 7950, this custom card has a factory core clock of 880MHz and 1250MHz (effective 5000MHz) on the memory. The core overclock of 80MHz represents a 10% speed increase over stock speeds.

Packed inside the rather huge packaging are the drivers CD, quick install guide, CrossFire bridge, DVI to VGA converter, mini-DP to DisplayPort and HDMI to DVI cables.

Coming on the reference PCB, the HD 7950 from PowerColor is cooled by an impressive looking heatsink. The GPU itself is in direct touch with the heatpipes that go into the metal fins, which are then cooled by the two fans on the top. The entire cooling solution is neatly hidden behind a matt black cover with blue stripes.

Notice that the heatsink is only in direct contact with the GPU, the memory chips are passively cooled with the metal fins on top of them. Perhaps this is why the memory speeds remained intact from PowerColor.

Of the two cards tested here, the PowerColor was the quietest, with barely a whisper of sound when under load. The fans spun to just 1,300 RPM under full load, while keeping temperatures well in check. On idle the PowerColor remained at 33°C, while under full load it never went beyond 58°C.

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From auditing to editing, I now test and analyze the latest gadgets and games instead of the latest financial statements. Both jobs are equally intense and rewarding. When I'm not burning up hardware in the name of science, you'll find me nuking in DOTA 2 or engineering in TF2.

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