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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great card for gaming and unbeatable for GPU Compute
Videocard and Box Accessories:

- Supports 4K resolution displays (4096 x 2160 through Fast HDMI) or 4096 x 2160 (DisplayPort). The card ships with a Fast HDMI cable, which means it is ready for 4K displays out of the box.
- 1x miniDisplay Port to Display-Port adapter (if you need to connect it to a Display Port LCD/LED screen)
- 1x HDMI-to-DVI...
Published on July 24, 2012 by Jinjo

versus
11 of 15 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Great videocard to many problem.
This card will run any game at max setting with good frame rates. Runs very cool under full load. My only problem with it is mine has coil whine that can be very annoying under full load enabling vsync helps some but for a 550$ it's very disappointing other than that its an amazing card. After a couple days of use the noise seems to be getting worse. Sapphire is a very...
Published on April 13, 2012 by Jami


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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great card for gaming and unbeatable for GPU Compute, July 24, 2012
This review is from: Sapphire Radeon HD 7970 OC 3GB DDR5 HDMI/DVI-I/Dual Mini DP PCI-Express Graphics Card 11197-01-40G (Personal Computers)
Videocard and Box Accessories:

- Supports 4K resolution displays (4096 x 2160 through Fast HDMI) or 4096 x 2160 (DisplayPort). The card ships with a Fast HDMI cable, which means it is ready for 4K displays out of the box.
- 1x miniDisplay Port to Display-Port adapter (if you need to connect it to a Display Port LCD/LED screen)
- 1x HDMI-to-DVI Adapter
- 1x Active MiniDisplay Port to DVI adapter ($30 value) -- this is required to drive 3 screens (1920x1080P) in Eyefinity out of the box. Almost none of the other HD7970s ship with an Active DP adapter.
- 1x DVI-to-VGA Adapter
- 1x Crossfire connector
- 1x 8-pin and 1x 6-pin power adapter - so this card will work even with older power supplies still using 2x6-pin PCI Express Connectors
- Videocard supports DX11.1, which introduces Target Independent Rasterization (TIR). This is supposed to accelerate 2D graphics desktop speed in Windows 8 (Google "Microsoft details Windows 8's improved graphics performance"
- The card takes up 2.5 slots as the cooling shroud slightly protrudes beyond 2 slots
- Length: 270mm for the PCB, ~286mm with the plastic fan shroud (11.26")

Performance and temperatures:
- The card comes factory clocked at 950mhz BIOS 1 and 1000mhz BIOS 2, with memory at 5700/5800MHz, respectively.
- My card had an ASIC of 71%, with a stock voltage of 1.174V
- Overclocks on stock voltage to 1150mhz, VRM temperatures in HWInfo64 never exceed 100*C at these settings
- At 1150mhz @ 1.174V, the GPU temperature hovers between 71-76*C with fan speeds varying from 51-63%, respectively. At these levels it is still very quiet for a high-end GPU. If you have a modern case with 2x120mm intake fans and say a 1x 230mm top exhaust fan, the heat being dumped into your case shouldn't be much of an issue. For smaller cases with poor airflow, I would suggest a card with a blower fan design (although those are generally much louder)
- This card is made on reference AMD PCB, which means FULL voltage control for the GPU using CHIL voltage regulator (allows up to 1.300V for the GPU and 1.65V for the memory)
- The Sapphire Dual-X has upgraded power circuitry from the reference card with a 5+2 VRM setup vs. 5+1 for a reference card. The (+2) is allocated to memory, which is why these specific models have some of the highest memory overclocks out of all the 7970 cards on the market.
- I am able to overclock the memory to 1800mhz on stock memory voltage of 1.6V (default)
- The memory cooling heatsink and VRM cooling makes this one of the coolest running 7970s
- At around 1150mhz GPU/1800mhz memory, this card is as fast as a 1280-1290mhz GTX680 at 1080P and noticeably faster at 2560x1440/1600, but costs less
- 3GB of VRAM is a bonus for mods (upcoming GTA V, SKYRIM)
- Faster than GTX680 with MSAA+Max settings in Anno 2070, Bulletstorm, Batman Arkham City, Serious Sam 3, Witcher 2, Crysis 2, SKYRIM, Dirt 3 with latest Catalyst 12.7 Beta drivers
- Absolutely unbeatable performance for a single-GPU card in Crysis 1, Crysis Warhead, Metro 2033, Dirt Showdown, Alan Wake, Arma II / DayZ Mod (2560x1600 4AA = HD7970 1050mhz 60 fps vs. 42 fps for GTX680!)

Drivers:
- Using Catalyst 12.7 Beta. No BSOD, coil whine, or driver issues / coming out of sleep problems to report. These may have existed in prior versions when the cards were first released in January

GPU Compute
- At 1150mhz GPU, almost 400,000 BOINC points in MilkyWay@Home, up from 235,000 points on HD6970.
- 680 MHash/sec in Bitcoin mining ~ 10-11 Bitcoins a month (Free $$$ on the side when not gaming)
- WinZip 16.5 compression/decompression acceleration with OpenCL extensions increases performance almost 2x over a $1000 Core i7-3960X.
- Single-Precision performance of 4.71 Tflops (1150mhz GPU) vs. Nvidia's K10 Tesla card that gets 4.58 Tflops (Using 2x GK104 GPUs). NV K10 expected to cost > $2,000
- Double-Precision performance of 1.18 Tflops (1150mhz GPU) vs. Nvidia's K20 Tesla card that is expected to get ~ 1 Tflops (Using GK110). NV K20 expected to cost > $3,000 in Q4 2012

Cons:
- At 1150mhz @ 1.174V, this card will consume about 40-50W of power more than a GTX680 @ 1280-1290mhz. To me the GPU Compute advantage is well worth the extra power consumption, but Kepler is still more efficient for gaming alone
- I wish the copper heatpipes were nickel plated to slow down oxidation and the card had a backplate. Minor personal gripes
- The card is not made using the most premium High-C Caps, Dark chokes that are present on other cards such as PowerColor Vortex II and MSI Lightning. Thus, there may be a chance of coil whine for some users
- Performance isn't as great as GTX680 in some Frostbite 2.0 games: Battlefield 3, Beta testing of Medal of Honor Warfighter
- Sometimes lacking performance against GTX680 in less 'popular' games: World of Planes, The Secret World, TrackMania 2, Hard Reset
- HD7900 series cannot enable their ZeroCore Power Idle saving feature when connected to multiple screens

Additional Overclocking Tips:
- You may need to modify the MSI Afterburner .cfg file using Notepad to allow Unofficial Overclocking Mode 1 or 2 (if you want full ability to downclock the memory to 685mhz in idle)
- In Sapphire Trixx, just keep moving the slider past all the way to the limits for GPU and Memory and it will keep unlocking EVEN faster speeds (Took me a while to figure that one out :)) You may want to Disable ULPS in Sapphire Trixx to aid in overclocking
- There is a leaked HD7970 GE Bios and some have tried flashing their Reference PCB cards with it. The GE BIOS manually forces the GPU voltage to 1.256V at load vs. 1.162/1.174V on the Sapphire Dual-X cards. This is complete overkill especially if you don't plan on overclocking beyond 1200mhz (i.e., you'll just add 40-50W of extra power consumption for no reason running the card at 1.256V). Also, the XT1 revision cards do not support the 50mhz GPU Boost function of GE (XT2) chips. So really I don't see any point in flashing the BIOS to the GE version.

Other:
- If you want to save some $, MSI TwinFrorz III HD7950 is a great value now and can be found for $310-330. I needed the extra compute but for gaming alone a 1.1-1.15ghz HD7950 will even beat a GTX680, negating much of the need to spend $100+ more on an HD7970.
- The Amazon cards do not come with 3 FREE games voucher
- Sapphire has just launched their VAPOR-X HD7970 GHZ EDITION 3GB GDDR5 cards with vapor chamber and 1000mhz GPU clocks (with 1050mhz GPU Boost). Those should be available shortly. I bought this card a while back, but for those who didn't, that's pretty much the successor to the Dual-X.
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10 of 12 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars 7970 OC Crossfire Setup, April 3, 2012
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This review is from: Sapphire Radeon HD 7970 OC 3GB DDR5 HDMI/DVI-I/Dual Mini DP PCI-Express Graphics Card 11197-01-40G (Personal Computers)
Bought two of these for crossfire and my 3x1080p monitor setup and was very excited to get them and I got them quite fast, 2 days. Now, this is supposed to be a 2 slot card, but it's not, it takes up 3 slots easily, so it's blatantly misleading for those hoping to crossfire on any size board with any other cards in pci slots.

I inserted them into my Sabertooth X-79 2011 board and they blocked every slot. No sound card, revo SSD, nothing can fit, not even a network card. Make sure you are aware of this or buy an extended board before you purchase more than 1.

This isn't exactly a con because it was something I thought might be an issue, but with no actual dimensions for the depth of the card, it was impossible to know without actually buying them because very few have crossfired 7970's, let alone these exact model. This is something that should have been clearly stated somewhere and it will cost me a couple weeks of returning the other parts that now wont fit and I now have to repurpose from other sources/models.

Overall the cards are amazing, crossfire is a little buggy but I'm not too worried. 5760x1080 Battlefield 3 @ 55 fps? Easily. Great cards. Just needed more info on the product page.
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7 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Fantastic Card, May 24, 2012
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This review is from: Sapphire Radeon HD 7970 OC 3GB DDR5 HDMI/DVI-I/Dual Mini DP PCI-Express Graphics Card 11197-01-40G (Personal Computers)
AMD knows how to make GPUs. They make great cards, and every now and then, nail it and make an absolute perfect card. They succeeded with the 5850 and it's brother 5870 and they succeeded again with the 7970. The 5850 had MASSIVE OC headroom with a starting stock core clock at 725 and people easily reached core clocks of 900 and above the 1 ghz mark. With the 7970, the OC headroom may not be as large, but is still there. A starting core clock of 925 and an easy OC up to 1125/1575 is just a lower oc.

I had a 7970 reference card by Sapphire, and I loved it. It did run extremely hot, at around 85 degrees C at 1175/1575. I had to set the fan at around 65% at that temperature and the sound and heat was just too annoying for gaming for more than 10 minutes. I considered buying an aftermarket cooler for around $80 which was reviewed to be excellent, although a tad on the larger side, and extremely tedious to install. I own an Antec 900 case, so combination of putting in another $80 with $579 original 7970 price, amount of work required and the smaller case size put me off buying the cooler. I returned my reference card and switched to this one.

The Sapphire Dual-X card is absolutely amazing. Although the GTX 680 is reviewed to be slightly better than the 7970 in a few categories, it is important to remember that the 7970 has a larger advantage in higher resolutions. This isn't to say that the 7970 is bad at 1920 x 1080. The performance of this card is ridiculous even when overclocked to around 1125/1575, which is the max in CCC, and can reach that clock at stock voltage. However, if you would wish to OC it higher, using other programs such as MSI afterburner and Trixx easily suffice.

Another amazing feature this card offers is its Dual Bios. It has two bios settings, one for a normal every day use and one suitable for a more aggressive OC profile. For all OCers it is recommended to switch to BIOS 2, which is a simple as flipping a switch on the top of the card when installed but not powered on, and provides so much more comfort in knowing if you brick one BIOS (extremely unlikely) you can just pop to the other one.

My main original problem with the reference 7970 was the fact that it was very loud and hot. Running this card at 1200/1600 at 1.3 volts with a modest fan profile that I have only seen running at 55%, the card reaches a maximum of 50 degrees C and idles at around 28 deg C. This is a fantastic improvement, and the fan is nearly silent as well. The only time I hear the fan running over the case fans and operation volume is when I'm torturing the card in Heaven, Kombustor, 3D Mark Vantage, and other benchmarking programs.

This card blows the reference design out of the water, but I may have received a card that has random kinks in it. While it is not a dud and can OC a little bit, I am unable to OC it more than 1200/1600 at 1.3 volts compared to other owners of the same card, cpu and mobo that I have talked to. Yes, I know that there are many variables in OCing GPUs but I think 1.3 volts is rather high for a more average clock speed. I have read multiple reviews of people achieving 1200/1600 on voltages around 1.22, and my voltage of 1.3 seems like overkill. Running the card at 1200/1600 is still satisfactory and still deserving of a 5-star rating.

Overall, this purchase is absolutely worth every penny. When compared to the GTX 680 at around $500, with performance that rivals if not outperforms the GTX 680, and for a good $30 cheaper, this card is an absolute must buy for computer enthusiasts and gamers alike.
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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Best 7970 out available, April 27, 2012
This review is from: Sapphire Radeon HD 7970 OC 3GB DDR5 HDMI/DVI-I/Dual Mini DP PCI-Express Graphics Card 11197-01-40G (Personal Computers)
Originally, I bought the MSI 7970 Lightning because of the legendary performance that usually comes with the Lightning product line. Unfortunately, I was only able to overclock the card to 1170 on the core and 1500 on the VRAM. This was in line with the experience that reviewers related, but it was a bit disappointing. In addition, the Lightning that I had would occasionally lock up, even when it wasn't overclocked. For six Benjamins, I wasn't going to put up with that, so I sent it back.

After scouring the reviews, I decided that I would get a GTX 680, even though I was uncomfortable with the 2 GB of VRAM (I game at 2560x1600). The reason I was a little doubtful was that when I tracked VRAM usage in Skyrim with all my HD mods, I frequently utilized all of the 3 GB of VRAM on the 7970. Despite these misgivings, I settled down to wait for a GTX 680 to pop up.

THEN I had a chance to get a Sapphire Dual-X 7970 OC for four hundred thirty dollars. I had read good reviews on the Sapphire 7970, and was impressed with the overclocks that reviewers were able to get on them. I decided to take a chance on the Sapphire over the GTX 680, since it was nearly a hundred less than what I could get a 680 for.

So far, I'm very glad I took the plunge. The OC I'm getting on the card I got is amazing! I can play Skyrim at 1270 on the core and 1700 on the VRAM (at 1.2 volts) with no problems. And I haven't even pushed it to the max yet to see how high I can go! At these speeds, I think I'm getting better performance than an overclocked GTX 680 would provide. To top it off, the Sapphire cooler is both quieter AND cooler than the MSI Lightning cooler. Max temps with my MSI were about 70 C in game, but I haven't ever hit above 65 C with my Sapphire yet.

The only two issues I see being a potential problem is a slight coil whine when I abuse the card in Furmark (no sounds at all during gaming, though), and the fact that the 7970 won't wake up after the computer goes to sleep. I have to reboot it. However, that is a problem with all 7970s it seems, since my MSI did it too, and I have read that a lot of other people have the same problem.

The other sticking point for me is Sapphire's warranty. Sure, 3 years is good, but several manufactures are doing the warranty by serial number instead of having it stuck with the purchaser. This could be a problem if you ever want to sell the card in the future. If Sapphire did their warranty by serial number, like some of their competition, that would be a huge boost in their favor.

In short, if you want a fantastic video card for a great price, look no further. Get it!
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11 of 15 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Great videocard to many problem., April 13, 2012
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This review is from: Sapphire Radeon HD 7970 OC 3GB DDR5 HDMI/DVI-I/Dual Mini DP PCI-Express Graphics Card 11197-01-40G (Personal Computers)
This card will run any game at max setting with good frame rates. Runs very cool under full load. My only problem with it is mine has coil whine that can be very annoying under full load enabling vsync helps some but for a 550$ it's very disappointing other than that its an amazing card. After a couple days of use the noise seems to be getting worse. Sapphire is a very good graphic card maker It's seems like I've just been unlucky.

Update:
Got a replacement card still has the coil whine but its not nearly as bad as the first one. I'm bumping the score up to 4 stars for now. It really is an amazing card especially if you overclock it. Also make sure to use bios 2 it has a much better fan profile.

Update: I got a Third replacement card doesn't have the coil whine what so ever very happy. I must have been just very unlucky.

update: After a couple weeks of use I started getting terrible artifacts In Bf3 and unigine heaven 3.0. I went through every step I could think of tried 4 different drivers, re-seated the graphics card, Uninstalling and reinstalling Bf3, Cleaning the PCI-E slot with compressed air, nothing worked. It saddens me because this is such an amazing card while it works but for 450-500$ product I shouldn't be having all these problems. The other issue I've dealt with was coil whine. I have 4 120mm fans and 2 140mm fans running at 100% and I could still hear it. it's something a 450+ card shouldn't Be having issues with. I really like sapphire and amd as a company But enough is enough I'm on to a new product. I still give it 2 stars cause I'm sure some people have had very good experiences with this card.

Last Update: For all people that are having no issues with this card I Just wanted to let you know I have switched to a GTX 680 don't believe all the hype the radeon 7970 is very very close to the same performance the only way you can even tell the 680 is faster is if you run fraps. I'm really disappointed that this card didn't work out for me I really wish it had. for all potential purchasers I would say at 450$ give this card a shot.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great cards, October 21, 2012
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This review is from: Sapphire Radeon HD 7970 OC 3GB DDR5 HDMI/DVI-I/Dual Mini DP PCI-Express Graphics Card 11197-01-40G (Personal Computers)
Very cool, great overclock, so much better then my old GTX 580. AMD drivers could be a little better.

It uses 7970 reference PCB, so you can fit any waterblock in the market.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Huge upgrade over the GTX 550, May 15, 2012
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This review is from: Sapphire Radeon HD 7970 OC 3GB DDR5 HDMI/DVI-I/Dual Mini DP PCI-Express Graphics Card 11197-01-40G (Personal Computers)
The graphics card itself is amazing and everything just looks so much better and plays so much better but I have had alot of driver issues which isn't uncommon so be prepared for some restarts. When it's working properly though it is a treat
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Rocking Card, October 31, 2012
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This review is from: Sapphire Radeon HD 7970 OC 3GB DDR5 HDMI/DVI-I/Dual Mini DP PCI-Express Graphics Card 11197-01-40G (Personal Computers)
This card is everything I wanted right out of the box, Fast, quiet, and so far no limit to anything I've run on it, need a new monitor now, 1680x1050 just doesn't do it justice!! Did have to carve a small piece of the corner on the plastic fan cover so it would fit in the case, an Apevia X-Jupiter.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars AMD + Sapphire = Genius, October 6, 2012
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This review is from: Sapphire Radeon HD 7970 OC 3GB DDR5 HDMI/DVI-I/Dual Mini DP PCI-Express Graphics Card 11197-01-40G (Personal Computers)
When I purchased this card, it was $450 after rebate - a bargain compared to the (at the time) unavaialable $500 nVidia GTX 680. Stock HD 7970s ran at about 90% of the performance of the GTX 680; I figured this edition, factory clocked in BIOS 2 at 1 GHz GPU, would be close to GTX 680 performance.

Then Catalyst 12.7 came out, offering a great boost in performance for the 7970. Combined with a lower-than-max, non-overvolted (I want my card to last) 1115 MHz GPU / 1700 MHz memory OC, this little baby flies, and quietly, with about 55% fan speed at no more than 71C GPU, mid-high 50s on the VRs. Definitely a worthwhile purchase. It bests the GTX 680 in benchmarking, but more important, games are great at max settings viewed on my lowly 1920x1080 monitor. And now that it's available for $380 with rebate, it's time for another.

Kudos to AMD and Sapphire - these guys know how to do it right, not just for us single-monitor guys, but all the way up to the hard-core CrossFire multi-monitor OC beasts out there. Keep up the great work!

And bring out the HD 7990 already...
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars the silent killer, September 24, 2012
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This review is from: Sapphire Radeon HD 7970 OC 3GB DDR5 HDMI/DVI-I/Dual Mini DP PCI-Express Graphics Card 11197-01-40G (Personal Computers)
the card runs Crysis2, Borderlands2, Battlefiled3, Max Payne3 and many other with all graphics options high and it keep its coldness and silence, like I'm runnnig digger...
now it's 70-100$ less then when I bought it and that make it great price/performance ration card. my 3DMard06 gave it more then 28600.. that says it all.
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