Test Setup and Results: 3D Mark 2011

Test Setup

I had a hard time determining what cards I would test these products against. After reviewing benchmarks from quite a few products that I had looked at before, I came to a few conclusions. The overclocked HD 7850 is in the same overall performance class as an overclocked HD 6970. The results of those two cards are essentially a wash. I have not had a chance to review the GTX 670, but the performance is around that of a stock HD 7970.

To keep things interesting, I directly compared these cards to the previous generation’s top card. In this case it is the MSI N580 GTX Lightning Xtreme. This is a heavily overclocked GTX 580 with 3GB of frame buffer. This was a $650 card upon its release. I also compared them to the new R7970 Lightning, which is currently the fastest HD 7970 that can be purchased. It goes for around $550 when available. I felt that these two cards would really give users a good idea of where the HD 7800 series of cards stack up in the big scheme of things.

I continue to use the AMD Phenom II X6 1100T as it is still the overall fastest gaming chip that AMD offers. Yes, the Intel chips will have better gaming performance, but there are still some poor folks out there that will be interested in the performance of an AMD platform with these new graphics cards. Here’s hoping Vishera will at least get AMD back into the basic performance game in Q3.

AMD Phenom II X6 1100T
Asus SABERTOOTH 990FX Motherboard
2 x 4 GB GSkill DDR-3 1600 @
Antec HCP-1200 Power Supply
1 TB WD Caviar Black 7200 RPM HD
Lite-On BDR
Windows 7 64 Bit Ultimate Edition
AMD Catalyst 12.3
NVIDIA 296.10 Drivers


3D Mark 2011

The latest 3D mark features some heavy DX11 content with plenty of tessellation to make most video cards cry. The Performance preset was used.

The results here are quite interesting. The XFX HD 7870 is right at the heels of the previous generation’s top card. Add a few MHz to that overclock and it should surpass the N580 GTX XE. The R7970 is in a class all its own. The HD 7850 is not terribly far behind in this particular benchmark, but other upcoming applications might not be that kind to it.

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