Graphics Cards Guide

AMD Radeon HD 7970 & HD 7950 - Heading to Southern Islands with Tahiti

AMD Radeon HD 7970 & HD 7950 - Heading to Southern Islands with Tahiti



Test Setup

Test Setup

We welcome the South Islanders to our trusty setup which comprises the following key components. The version of the AMD Catalyst used for testing the AMD Radeon HD 7970 and 7950 is 11.11.

  • Intel Core i7-975 (3.33GHz)
  • Gigabyte GA-EX58-UD4P motherboard
  • 3 x 1GB DDR3-1333 G.Skill memory in triple channel mode
  • Seagate 7200.10 200GB SATA hard drive
  • Windows 7 Ultimate 64-bit

For comparison, we have pitted the Southern Islanders against cards from the Northern Islands as well as worthy top competitors from NVIDIA. Note that we've also included dual-GPU varieties to see how the new flagship from AMD stands against these behemoths. 

The list of card tested and driver versions used:

  • AMD Radeon HD 7970 3GB GDDR5 (AMD Catalyst 11.11)
  • AMD Radeon HD 7950 3GB GDDR5 (AMD Catalyst 11.11)
  • AMD Radeon HD 6990 4GB GDDR5 (AMD Catalyst 11.11)
  • AMD Radeon HD 6970 2GB GDDR5 (AMD Catalyst 11.11)
  • NVIDIA GeForce GTX 590 3GB GDDR5 (ForceWare 285.62)
  • NVIDIA GeForce GTX 580 1560MB GDDR5 (ForceWare 280.26)

In moving with the times, we have updated our benchmarking software to include three other gaming titles to the mix - Crysis 2, Batman: Arkam City and Dirt 3.

The full list of benchmarks used:

  • Futuremark 3DMark 11
  • Futuremark 3DMark Vantage
  • Crysis Warhead
  • Far Cry 2
  • "Heaven" from Unigine v2.1
  • S.T.A.L.K.E.R.: Call of Pripyat
  • Batman: Arkham City
  • Crysis 2
  • Dirt 3