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Need help choosing between 7970s and 7950

Last response: in Graphics & Displays
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March 18, 2013 12:50:41 PM

I'm a newbie in PC building. I've decided to finally get my hands dirty. I've gotten most of my components but I'm having trouble choosing a GPU. I originally wanted to get a Sapphire 7970 but that is no longer available where I live. Out of what is available to me, I've narrowed it down to 4 choices:

ASUS Radeon HD 7970 DirectCU II = $562
XFX R7970 Double Dissipation Edition = $510
XFX R7970 Double D Black Edition = $598
SAPPHIRE HD 7950 3GB GDDR5 Dual-X = $387

I plan on playing games like Skyrim, Guild Wars 2, Star Wars: The Old Republic and Battlefield 3 on high graphic settings on a single monitor. I want to OC my card a bit eventually but nothing extreme.
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The rest of my build is:

i5 3570k (w/ Cooler Master Hyper 212 Evo)
Asus P8Z77-V Pro
2 x Kingston Hyper X blu - 4GB Module - DDR3 1600MHz CL9 DIMM
HDD Seagate Barracuda 500GB + 2000GB
Samsung DVD Writer SH-216
Cooler Master M2 Silent Pro 850W
Cooler Master USP 100 Black Mid Tower

Any help would be much appreciated.

More about : choosing 7970s 7950

a b Ĉ ASUS
March 18, 2013 12:53:55 PM

Prices?
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a b Ĉ ASUS
March 18, 2013 12:55:37 PM

redeagleman said:
I'm a newbie in PC building. I've decided to finally get my hands dirty. I've gotten most of my components but I'm having trouble choosing a GPU. I originally wanted to get a Sapphire 7970 but that is no longer available where I live. Out of what is available to me, I've narrowed it down to 4 choices:

ASUS Radeon HD 7970 DirectCU II
XFX R7970 Double Dissipation Edition
XFX R7970 Double D Black Edition
SAPPHIRE HD 7950 3GB GDDR5 Dual-X

I plan on playing games like Skyrim, Guild Wars 2, Star Wars: The Old Republic and Battlefield 3 on high graphic settings on a single monitor. I want to OC my card a bit eventually but nothing extreme.
______________________________________________________________
The rest of my build is:

i5 3570k (w/ Cooler Master Hyper 212 Evo)
Asus P8Z77-V Pro
2 x Kingston Hyper X blu - 4GB Module - DDR3 1600MHz CL9 DIMM
HDD Seagate Barracuda 500GB + 2000GB
Samsung DVD Writer SH-216
Cooler Master M2 Silent Pro 850W
Cooler Master USP 100 Black Mid Tower

Any help would be much appreciated.


I VOTE FOR ASUS Radeon HD 7970 DirectCU II
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March 18, 2013 12:56:54 PM

I have pretty much the same build as you and I have been waiting to get a 7950. There is about a 3-13% performance bump with the 7970 but a 25% price increase. If you have the money, Go for it. If you have a tight budget, then go for the 7950. That's what I'm going for.

Also, The XFX cards run hotter than the reference models so I would go for the Sapphire.

Cheers :) 
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a b Ĉ ASUS
March 18, 2013 1:04:58 PM

I'd go for the ASUS Radeon HD 7970 DirectCU II
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a b Ĉ ASUS
March 18, 2013 1:13:06 PM

Based on the prices you listed I'd get the 7950. The 7970 is faster, but for you you'd have to pony up a lot more money. I'd go with the 7950.
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March 18, 2013 1:34:29 PM

7950 for sure. From my testing, it takes a 55-60MHZ increase from the 7970 to match it. Ie, I need 985 mhz on my 7950 to match a 7970 in various games. Not worth the price difference. The 7950 is also cooler and uses less power.w
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a b Ĉ ASUS
March 18, 2013 1:51:27 PM

I don't recommend XFX though that's why i voted ASUS Radeon HD 7970 DirectCU II if you do go for a 7950 get Sapphire.
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March 18, 2013 2:14:24 PM

They're both solid cards. TBH the 7950 has similar performance to a 670 (debatable), and the 7970 often shows higher fps when compared to a 680. Best bang/buck? Probably the 7950, and that Sapphire card has good cooling. For the 7970, I would choose the ASUS DirectCUII card (remember it's a triple slot card, so make sure you have enough motherboard spacing) since it offers very nice cooling and awesome performance, but I'm not completely sure whether it's a Ghz edition card or voltage locked, but the Sapphire Vapor-X card and XFX DD Black Edition cards are both ghz editions and have factory overclocks already.
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March 18, 2013 3:11:59 PM

Thanks for the input. I had been leaning towards the 7970 but the xfx really doesn't seem like it's worth it up against the Sapphire 7950, especially considering the xfx ones are supposedly voltage locked. Seems like it's a choice between the ASUS Radeon HD 7970 DirectCU II and SAPPHIRE HD 7950 3GB GDDR5 Dual-X. Although the price difference is significant I don't plan on upgrading anytime soon. I'm currently running Pentium D integrated graphics so any of the above to would be a colossal improvement. I'll probably stick to my new build until it becomes as obsolete as what I'm using now. So with that in mind I wouldn't mind paying the extra for the Asus 7970. Is it worth it if I'm only playing on 1 full HD monitor over the 7950 or am I not even going to be able to tell the difference besides when running benchmarks?
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March 18, 2013 3:39:41 PM

A 1080p monitor? Get a 7950. In game, you'll see very little difference between both of them, and a pentium system would probably experience bottlenecking with both a 7970 or 7950. Even a 7870 XT would be a great card, but to save money and to prevent bottlenecking, get a 7950, especially for only a 1080p monitor.
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