Monday, May 7th 2012

AMD Readies Radeon HD 7970 GHz Edition

AMD's Radeon HD 7970 could not hold on to the single-GPU performance crown for too long. It lost it to NVIDIA GeForce GTX 680, and the upcoming GeForce GTX 670 threatens to damage its competitiveness even further. Reports suggest that AMD is working on a new Tahiti-based graphics card SKU, the Radeon HD 7970 GHz Edition. AMD unveiled the "GHz Edition" moniker to denote SKUs that come with engine clock speed ≥1 GHz. The new HD 7970 GHz Edition will come with reference core clock speed of 1050 MHz.

AMD needn't tinker with memory clock speed, as it already has a 384-bit wide GDDR5 memory interface compared to the GeForce GTX 680 and its 256-bit memory bus width. Sources told Atomic PC that improved yields and manufacturing processes have benefitted Tahiti just as well as GK104, and ES Tahiti chips from the latest batches "easily" hit 1250 MHz core. These batches could make custom-design graphics cards with extremely high core clock speeds possible.

Sources: Atomic PC, Engadget
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203 Comments on AMD Readies Radeon HD 7970 GHz Edition

#1
TheMailMan78
Big Member
by: Crap Daddy
Where are all the Nvidia users when you need them? They left me here alone to defend the 680 against the mighty 7970 GHz edition... They are all probably searching for the leaks regarding the 670. By the way, it's gonna be launched on the 10th of May.

On a more serious note, in my poor country the cheapest 7970 is the equivalent of 580$ and the only 680, an ASUS, which is available, one can actually buy, is at 740$. So you are right, probably it's the same all over the place. I personally will NEVER pay this amount of money to play console ports but that's another story. If one wants to get these cards then of course the 7970 is the option.
I can get a 7970 for $479 all day. 680 is at the cheapest $499 but none are in stock.
Posted on Reply
#2
Hayder_Master
even with 1Ghz still can't beat GTX680 !!! , better move to make it really active is lower the price.
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#3
Xzibit
This is my simplistic way of putting it.

680 $499
7970 $499
(US MSRP Pricing)

Games
-Nvidia 600 Series

Games + Folding
-AMD HD 7000 Series

The GTX 680 (GK104) folds like a GTX 560 Ti (GF114). Nvidia stated that you would have buy there Quadro or Tesla series cards for folding this generation. Who knows if this is there new direction from now on.

Now if your main concern is only benchmark gaming Nvidia did its job you'll be paying a nice premium the way things are looking. Although if your into getting your moneys worth and not getting screwed over from the norm thats been established by both companies over the years you might want to skip the GK104 series.

Hopefully its simple enough to understand ;)
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#4
HumanSmoke
by: TheMailMan78
1. Depends on what you are looking for. Once you OC the 7970 is smokes the 680 and you gotta admit most people who drop this kinda coin on a GPU tend to OC......Hows that 680 look at idle compared to the 7970? ;)
Do the kind of people who OC really give a rats ass whether one GPU idles at a couple of watts less than another ? And if they do, why don't they care about the 7970's power usage delta with clock increase?
BTW: I though it was fairly well established that clock-for-clock the 7970 gulps wattage like Fermi's bastard kid.


[Source: Sweclockers....both cards OC'ed to 1150M core]
by: TheMailMan78
I mean if you want "plug and play" sure the 680 is better. If you are an enthusiast the 7970 is a better choice
Not sure if a lack of TXAA, adaptive v-sync, no physx, no viable encoder and a lower instance of playability for games on launch day -and I include SLI/CFX here since I assume these people might be termed enthusiasts- is a better choice for enthusiasts...just sayin'
Posted on Reply
#5
eddman
by: TheMailMan78
1. Its doesn't "perform worse"
2. Runs hotter yet OC WAY BETTER.
3. Less then 1 watt at idle and now NVIDIA users care about power consumption?
4. 7970 is cheaper AND in abundance.

There is NOTHING wrong with the 7970. It was just over priced in the first month or so.
1. If it scores lower in benchmarks then it performs worse. Very simple.

2. Exaggeration. Not each and every 7970 can reach a high OC. Same applies to 680. Even then 680 edges ahead a little bit in performance.
An OCed 7970 might be very close to an OCed 680, but there are many buyers, I dare say the majority, that don't OC at all (yes, even when it comes to high-end cards). Not everyone is a geek.

3. The important factor for a gaming card is load consumption, and 680 uses much less. I don't know about TPU, but guru3D, hardware canucks, techreport and anandtech show differences of 22w, 31w, 43w and 29w.

4. That's true.

Saying all that, 7970 is a good card and is priced accordingly. You won't go wrong buying one.
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#6
the54thvoid
Here is a breakdown of W1zz's 7970 Lightning review. It has clocks at 1070. Look at red wins, look at green wins. The Lightning consumes 35 watts more (gaming average). These are taken as is from W1zz's review, no fiddling.

The resolution quoted in the table is at 1920x1200. At 2560x1600 the 7970 fares even better.

W1zz's test suite is the most comprehensive out there, no other site bar another German (HT4U) tests as many varied games. A final summary graph never plays out very well, one major win can skew an average.

Please take a minute to look at the factually accurate chart below (it took me half hour to compile) and understand the cards are absolutely equal . But the 7970 has more oomph.

A minus score is a green win. If it's not coloured it's under a 5% win (either way). These are statistically accurate.

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#7
amdftw
by: BarbaricSoul
AMD needs to do something, GK110 is coming
Yes, Gk110 is coming, just the problem is it will not be game oriented Geforce product line.
NV ended the Keplers products with gtx680 and gtx690, won't come faster gamer card with kepler gpu. So the next step will be the Maxwell in next year.

NV redisegned the Kepler architecture for GPGPU aplications to professional users and workstations which named Gk110 gpu.
NV Quadro and Tesla cards will builded this Gpu with 2-3-4000 Usd price tag.

So it is better if you do not wait for Gtx685 card.
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#8
marsey99
i love readin the shite buttsore fanbois make up :lol:

this thread is 5* and i will read it again :D

amdftw you are the best mate :D
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#9
deadmansclick
in the uk the price diff is a fair amount. 7970 are around £370 & 680's are around £440.

so for us the 7970 is a far better deal atm.
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#10
HumanSmoke
by: the54thvoid
Here is a breakdown of W1zz's 7970 Lightning review...
Nice work, although I'd say a little incomplete. Here's a (not really) quick breakdown of 1920x1080/1200, 2560x1440/1600 and 5760x1080/1200 benches from 48 sites: (ABT, Anandtech, Benchmark Reviews, Bit-tech, Bjorn3D, BSN, ComputerBase, eTeknix, Guru3D, [H]OCP, Hardware Canucks, Hardware France, Hardware Heaven, Hardware info (nl), Hardwareluxx, Hardware-mag (de), Hartware.net, Hexus, Hi Tech Legion, Hot Hardware, HT4U, iXBT, KitGuru, Lab501 (ro), LanOC, Legit Reviews, Maximum PC, Motherboards.org, Neoseeker, OC3D, Overclockersclub, OCaholic, PC Perspective, PCGH, PCinlife, PClab (pol), PC Watch (jp), PureOC, Sweclockers, T-Break, TPU, Tech Report, Techspot, Tom's Hardware, Tweaktown, Vortez, VR Zone and Xbit)
(# No of site reviews. One bench per site at each resolution-only the highest level of image quality bench used). Numbers are overall percentage (red = 7970, green= Nvidia). Percentages arrived at by totalling the single bench per site game averages, then averaging those averages.


and just for shizz and giggles...SLI / CFX


(original excel spreadsheet available)
Posted on Reply
#11
the54thvoid
by: HumanSmoke
Nice work, although I'd say a little incomplete. Here's a (not really) quick breakdown of 1920x1080/1200, 2560x1440/1600 and 5760x1080/1200 benches from 48 sites...
Dude, you're sadder than me :toast:

But as you obviously visit many sites for reviews (as do I) you'll notice scary differences between review sites. I tend to stick to the few i know from experience that are not biased one way or another or that use good test structures.

But I always come back to W1zzard. He'll only ever be the real deal. :D

Edit: so at 2560x1600 res, 24 wins for 7970, 28 wins for 680. Considering a lot of those games are TWIMTBP (sponsored) it's not too bad a result. And I'm guessing that's ref clocks?
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#12
v12dock
Fantastic thread, they are both awesome cards.
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#13
HTC
What i have yet to understand is how the 680 manages to use less then 2 GBs VRAM in some games when the 7970 uses quite a bit more then 2 GBs VRAM.

Does the use of less VRAM indicate the image quality suffers? Thus far it seems not to be the case. If this has been explained already, i missed it :(


On topic:

This will make the 7970 a bit better @ stock: i just wonder how much the premium for this GHz version compared to the "regular" version.
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#14
iCookie
In order for AMD to stay in the game they'll need another price drop to equalize that price performance, because as of this moment you still get more bang out of your buck with a 680 (regardless of how little that is).

While the 680 might not be a very large threat in terms of price performance, the 670 on the other hand is. AMD appears to have recognize that issue and as a result has planned to release a Ghz Ed 7970, and don't quote me but in my opinion i believe it's safe to say AMD will follow the launch with a price drop just to sweeten the deal a bit.
Posted on Reply
#15
HumanSmoke
by: the54thvoid
Dude, you're sadder than me :toast:
Probably!
This does have a greater purpose though. I'm a system builder, and generally have to tailor my component fit-out advice based on specific need -for gamers usually a core of games/game engines, and I find that a lot of reviews tend to stick with a limited number of releases (BF3, Metro 2033, DiRT3, AvP for example), so going further afield nets a larger variety.
The information (in spreadsheet form) also highlights which benchmarks offer consistancy, and what kind of range is covered. Consistant outliers favouring one brand or another tend to be readily apparent
by: the54thvoid
But as you obviously visit many sites for reviews (as do I) you'll notice scary differences between review sites
Partly due to bias (or non consistant benchmark settings), recycling old benchmarks and/or testing games that aren't to the same patched/revision status, misreporting the game i.q. used, forced CP/third-party utility settings which may, or may not be applied in game, and whether the bench is run with normal backround processes concurrently or not.
by: the54thvoid
I tend to stick to the few i know from experience that are not biased one way or another or that use good test structures
Likewise. The ones I put the most faith in are those that quantify all settings used and the revision/patch status of the bench/game being used. I will include all benchmarks (within reason) for an overview.
by: the54thvoid
so at 2560x1600 res, 24 wins for 7970, 28 wins for 680. Considering a lot of those games are TWIMTBP (sponsored) it's not too bad a result.
Much like auto racing it's "run what you brung". You could argue that a lot of games featured are Nvidia friendly or TWIMTBP- that also says to me that Nvidia have an eye for sponsoring/supporting gaming titles that gamers want to play. It stands to reason that a benchmark suite should reflect current gaming trends and game popularity, so I certainly wouldn't begrudge the widespread use of BF3, DiRT3, TESV:Skyrim or Batman:AC...although, the continued use of Metro 2033 (ok from a torture test angle) and Far Cry 2 I find debateable...does anyone actually play these, and if so how many would replay them?
by: the54thvoid
And I'm guessing that's ref clocks?
The GTX 680 is stock in every case. The HD 7970 is stock in most cases ( a minority of reviews used factory overclocked cards for comprison. Maximum PC for instance used the XFX Black Edition 7970).
As gaming f.p.s. was only a part of the info I was culling (along with power usage, heat, acoustics, overclocking headroom, overclock-to-power draw delta etc.) I figured that a handful of slight OC'ed 7970's wouldn't impact the overall dataset too highly.
by: iCookie
In order for AMD to stay in the game they'll need another price drop to equalize that price performance, because as of this moment you still get more bang out of your buck with a 680 (regardless of how little that is).
That kind of depends what you have to pay for each respective card. Prices seem to fluctuate wildly depending upon the market.
As for AMD cutting prices...that is a double edged sword. Might gain some favourable comments at the conclusion of a few reviews, but I'm guessing if you're in the market for an enthusiast level card (or two), pricing isn't the be all and end all.
From a PR and public perception standpoint; AMD have just had a hefty price reduction...they are also giving away a three game pack...add another price cut and it starts looking like desperation...meanwhile, Nvidia's latest and greatest (GTX 690) is being compared to a work of art and/or supercar. Add in the fact that all this stems from ONE GPU (GK104) that traces it's origin to a general laughingstock (GF100) and you have a near complete swing in performance, die area, and most importantly, brand perception, and you can see that the momentum favours Nvidia regardless of AMD reaction -short of rolling out their own quantum leap in GPU tech. A much harder job when the baseline you are comparing with isn't a bad level of performance in its own right.
To a degree, pricing becomes secondary (esp if GK 104 is constrained) since the thing AMD are losing is not marketshare, it's mindshare.
Buying a performance AMD card already has one caveat built in against it for a lot of people* -it sorely doesn't need two.

*Resale. If you're updating cards regularly, resale value tends to play a significant part in the upgrade cycle. AMD's cards have historically lost value faster than Nvidia's cards. You now have the situation where one of AMD's biggest virtues- Bitcoin- also becomes a force that drives down the resale market, since many are wary of picking up a card which may have spent it's life at near 24/7 100% GPU usage
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#16
MxPhenom 216
Corsair Fanboy
by: Am*
Not going to happen in the next 6 months at least, which makes it irrelevant. By then AMD will have their next gen GPUs ready. Nvidia will be spending those 6 months working on getting CUDA and GPGPU performance up to scratch on their CURRENT cards and getting Quadros out the door.
to bad it is. GK110 is in the works and will be out Q4 this year.
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#17
erocker
by: nvidiaintelftw
to bad it is. GK110 is in the works and will be out Q4 this year.
Nvidia has never made a statment. Your post is just rumor. Granted, I would love to see this card. Too bad Nvidia can't make enough 680's.. I doubt they've sold a whole lot either.
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#18
MxPhenom 216
Corsair Fanboy
by: erocker
Nvidia has never made a statment. Your post is just rumor. Granted, I would love to see this card. Too bad Nvidia can't make enough 680's.. I doubt they've sold a whole lot either.
true. GTX680s have been in stock on newegg a few times today for 20 minutes haha.
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#19
Fluffmeister
by: nvidiaintelftw
true. GTX680s have been in stock on newegg a few times today for 20 minutes haha.
Hehe exactly, they haven't sold a lot, they are selling all of them as soon as they come in. :laugh:
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#20
SIGSEGV
the correct header/title for this thread should be "Nvidia Readies For GTX680 GHz Edition : Availability and Markets Profit Gain "
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#21
swirl09
by: sanadanosa
Most review site talk about bad 7970 crossfire performance on several game due to AMD bad driver and I`m sure they are not fanboys
Well, each site you visit you get a different story - this review on scaling shows it goes back and forth between the 2 and yet last week Anand said Xfire was too broken to recommend.

Tbh, neither company has a clean record and it really depends on your setup and what your doing with it. Ive personally had more trouble with nVidia as a company, with a G82 dying in my mac brook pro a few years ago, to which nVidia acknowledged there was a problem with the platform but largely shrugged when it came to helping their customers. And in a kind of funny twist, someone who I built a machine for 2 or so years ago specifically asked for an nVidia and one day he was quite unlucky and downloaded drivers which were pulled in less than 24 hours as they pushed the cards too hard, seemingly panic drivers.

Sure enough, reading around more people will tell you nVidia are stronger on the driver front, but my point is simply neither company is perfect.


by: phanbuey
Drivers or not - if it performs worse then who cares.

Their biggest issue is really not performance but pricing. The pricing for the entire 7 series was way too high.

The 5 series was when AMD really pulled off a huge victory, mostly due to pricing.

Right now they are trying to pursue the Nvidia model of "offer the best performance and overcharge for it", and it seems that it is not working out for them.
Could not agree with this less. While it would be nice if both sides were a bit cheaper this round, AMDs current reduced price is what sold me on getting a 7970 last week. Also, the 5 series wasnt just a nice victory thanks mostly to price, it was the small fact they were half a year ahead with DX11 ^.^

It was a very easy choice for me, 497EUR for a custom cooled 7970 vs 568EUR for a reference 680. Cheaper, cooler, quieter and faster out of the box = no brainer. I couldnt give a shit if it consumes more power. 680 is a nice card and had there been a custom cooled option available for a small premium over a similar 7970 I would have picked the 680, but that was far from the case.
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#22
Nothgrin
If Intel gets their way and 4K resolution becomes a standard then these cards will be completely useless in high res gaming. I can wait a few years for standardization. And a few more for prices to fall.
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#23
HumanSmoke
by: Nothgrin
If Intel gets their way and 4K resolution becomes a standard
1. Intel has nothing to do with display standards
2. 4K is already a standard- or a number of them to be exact;
4096 x 2160 (4K)
3840x2160 (QFHD)

UHDTV (7680x4320) is also working towards a standard afaiw

Now check the pricing, and work out if we're in any danger of 4K gaming overrunning us.
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#24
TRWOV
by: Crap Daddy
Where are all the Nvidia users when you need them?
TheMailMan78 is one of them.

:toast:
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#25
sergionography
i think many people here are missing the point, this is a new revision not just an overclocked hd7970, meaning it will be doing 1ghz at the same voltage which usualy means at the same power consumption as the first batch of hd7970, in other words the 28nm process matured and can now achieve better efficiency, note that the hd7970 was released at the infancy stage of 28nm and it still pulled off something great but now it can do better, even nvidia claims the reason behind its efficiency this round is due to the tsmc 28nm process, and them starting production like 3-4 month later meant they were fine tuning their chips with a more refined 28nm

as for gk110 i heard it will be released around october, that is 2 month before its time for amd to release the hd 8970
so if you ask me i think amd is giving nvidia a run for their money
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