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XFX R7970 Double Dissipation Graphics Card Review

To test today we are using our long standing Core i7 970 system, which is overclocked. We have a variety of hardware benchmarked on this system within the last couple of weeks which will make for an interesting market comparison.

Test System:
: Core i7 970 @ 4.6ghz
Graphics: XFX HD7970 DD
Cooling: Coolit Vantage
Motherboard: MSI X58A-GD65
Chassis: Thermaltake Level 10 GT
Power Supply: Corsair AX1200
Memory: 6GB ADATA @ 2133mhz 9-10-9-32
Storage: Kingston SSDNow V+ 512GB Gen 2 SSD (Storage) / Crucial RealSSD C300 256GB (OS boot)

Comparison Cards:
HD6990 (880 core)
GTX580 SLi

Monitors: Dell U3011 / LaCie 730

Windows 7 Enterprise 64 bit
Catalyst 11.11/11.12 press driver
ForceWare 285.62 WHQL
Unigine Heaven Benchmark
3DMark Vantage
3DMark 11
Fraps Professional
Steam Client

Alien V Predator
Dead Island
Tom Clancy HAWX 2
Resident Evil 5
Lost Planet 2
Far Cry 2
F1 2011
Deus Ex: Human Revolution

All the latest BIOS updates and drivers are used during testing. We perform generally under real world conditions, meaning KitGuru tests games across five closely matched runs and then average out the results to get an accurate median figure. If we use scripted benchmarks, they are mentioned on the relevant page.

Some game descriptions are edited from Wikipedia.

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  • Adrian

    Wow…Wow…Wow!!! I can’t wait for Ivybridge chips to start rolling in so I can start thinking about one of these or any of the possible new custom coolers/pcb designs coming out. For now the 6970 will do me just fine.

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  • Ethan

    They did supply it in an overclocked state. Its called the Black Double D 7970. I bought one just now lol. Its over clocked at 1 Ghz out of the box.


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  • Colin

    seems they have two models, one with an updated bios. good move !

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  • Peter Saunders

    XFX have two versions of this card available soon. this is the non black edition which kitguru reviewed, at reference clocks. FX-797A-TDFC

    The black edition seems only available in America this week, and its 1ghz clocks – its FX-797A-TDBC. They seem identical cards, so the non black edition is better value as price is lower. Black Editions are meant to be hand picked but I think either Kitguru got a great card, or they are all the same batch as 1,200mhz is pretty much as good as it gets when ocd’

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  • Kenny

    Great looking card, love the cooler !

  • Desmond

    I am getting one of these when they are availabile.

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  • Gary Odonnell

    Very sexy ! nice job from XFX on this card. out of my price range, but pisses on all the rest today.

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    omg, this card is out of this world, am waiting for the next batch as the ones i wanted are all sold out, am going XFX this time round… good job xfx & amd/ati

  • mbryans

    HD 7970 consumes only 250 watts just like HD 6970, so the temperature and noise from R7970 XFX DD is still considered average, not interesting. Components used by XFX look cheap.

    I’m waiting, who is able to make HD 7970 has load temperature below 60 and noise below 30 dBA. Is Asus or MSI Twin Frozr DirectCU?

  • Im curious mbryans. what ‘components’ look cheap?

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  • mbryans

    What I mean with look cheap is the blue-pink colored capacitors on the PCB, as painted by hand. As a semi-custom graphics card, the XFX card is is more like a reference card with custom cooler added. XFX should use a special color or logo on the capacitors and other components. Looks cheap does not mean really cheap, but rather to it felt.

  • mbryans

    I think there is something wrong from HQV 2.0 table. After the “Resolution Enhancement”, followed by “Theme Park”, “Driftwood”, “Beach at Dusk” (not “Ferris Wheel”), and “White and Black Cats” (this is not in table). End with “Skin Tones”.

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  • Blackops_2

    I was under the impression voltage was locked on these cards?

  • poep

    There is no voltage lock if you use Sapphire Trix 4.4.0 B.
    Otherwise ur limited.

    And afterburner is gh3y software these days which limits almost everything!! even the maximum clocks you can set i hope they die those mofos who make afterburner, F***ING HATE THOSE F*GGOTS!!


  • Sean

    the card may be crazy powerful, but longevity is a joke. I have been a long time xfx fan but after my recent experience I’ll NEVER buy another xfx product. 4 months ago I purchased their 7970 ghz edition card and about 30 days ago it fried, and by fried I mean computer won’t “post” with card installed. Their warranty policy is horrible and it will likely take you a month to get your replacement. I actually read their warranty policy which states they do not actually have to replace the card you send them with the same brand ie. AMD or Nvidia. On top of that they do not offer an advanced replacement option, I even offered to let them hold the full retail value from my bank account to make sure they got their defective card back…. “nope I do not have the ability to do that” I actually paid not only for shipping to them but put a return shipping label in the box so I didn’t have to wait for their 5 to 7 day gound shipping on the return. About 2 weeks ago I received my replacement 7970 ghz and all was good, until last night when the exact same failure took place and again after only 2 weeks I have a brand new dead XFX 7970 ghz edition video card. God I wish I would have done some research instead of just buying from the brand I had used in the past. Think I’ll look into ASUS’s ROG series, they actually offered an advanced exchange when my crosshair v died.