Which 7950 to buy? (Brand)

I know they're all similar, since they have the same chip, but I want opinions on a specific brand, since cooling and the quality of support for warranties differ.
These are the four cards I had in mind:

- XFX 7950 DD @800Mhz (Personal favorite; best looks, and looks matter to me)
- Sapphire 7950 OC Edition @900Mhz (Dual fans, 15€ more than the XFX)
- MSI 7950 Twin Frozr III @880Mhz (Dual fans)
- Gigabyte OC @900Mhz (Triple fans, the looks aren't there though)

I know the XFX, although 100Mhz behind, can easily be overclocked to 1Ghz (So can all the other cards), so that's not really a huge factor.
Upgrading from a GTS 250 (In essence, a 9800GTX+), and I have an i5 750, so it won't be a huge bottleneck for the card.

Thanks for reading, and I'm looking forward to your suggestions!
15 answers Last reply
More about which 7950 brand
  1. I just bought an XFX 7950 DD and it is very bad indeed, I think its a one off that I got a bad card but I'l be ringing AMD tomorrow to sort things out, then Il return the card and buy a 680:P, personnally id "now" go for sapphire or msi
  2. What was wrong with it? Most of the reviews I've read are very positive.
  3. ASUS
  4. CamaroZL1 said:
    What was wrong with it? Most of the reviews I've read are very positive.

    That's not what I was going to say about XFX, they were just good in the past but I don't know why their products are not as quality as before. maybe i'm wrong but I've seen a lot of members complaining about heat and several issues.

    Sapphire is the best partner for AMD, I've been using their products since the X1900, Also MSI & Asus said to be great and they have great cooling solutions.

    Gigabyte, didn't see a lot of issues towards them, but they are sometimes pricey. At the end I'd recommend the Dual Fan Sapphire.
  5. See, I listed only those 4 brands for a reason: The Asus 7950 DCU II is 600kn (~80€) more, it is absolutely gigantic, and it has a reported problem which I don't have the nerve to deal with (http://www.behardware.com/news/12153/asus-hd-7950-directcu-ii-fault-report.html). For that money I could get a 7970 anyway,
  6. Maybe it's a problem in this specific model, but really they are great brand and any model can be faulty.

    Anyway as i told you I recommend the sapphire the most, and for the HD 7970, If you overclock the HD 7950 to a certain level it will surpass the HD 7970 and be very close to GTX 680. It's the best overclocker in the HD 7xxx series.
  7. I'd look for a card that has a non-reference cooler design, but doesn't necessarily have some huge overclock. You don't want to be paying just for them to tweak a number for you--you can do that yourself. OTOH, you also want a cooler that's good enough (and especially quiet enough) to support a good OC.

    I'd consider this one, though it's out of stock on newegg atm: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16814125414

    And this one, also out of stock: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16814131458
  8. Unfortunately, neither of those are in stock (Gigabyte out of stock, Powercolor can't even be found here - I'm in Croatia).
  9. For some reason, it doesn't allow me to edit my previous message.

    The Gigabye card IS in stock, but triple fans might mean more noise (don't have experience with multi-fan cards, my GTS 250 has 1) and for me it just looks kind of cheap, and I hate the color of the PCB. If there isn't that much difference between these cards, I'd rather take an XFX/msi one, since I'm a real sucker for design.
  10. Thanks, but even if they did, I'd rather not order hardware from abroad because of possible issues with the card, and warranty would get a bit too tricky for my taste.
  11. CamaroZL1 said:
    Thanks, but even if they did, I'd rather not order hardware from abroad because of possible issues with the card, and warranty would get a bit too tricky for my taste.

    I've ordered from them and I'm from Ireland, no problems at all but I suppose things could get a bit tricky if you had to return something
  12. Yes, sorry, I read too fast and didn't realize that you weren't in the US. I've had good luck with an XFX double D 6950, and it's hard to argue with the warranty. The only issue is that it's possible that XFX has binned its OC and non-OC parts, so you might wind up with a slightly worse OC ceiling unless you get a factory OCed XFX. That seems like a second-order concern to me unless you are really planning to push the limits of the card's OC.

    (I understand that the Gigabyte doesn't look that great, and it's not up to me to dispute your motivations for buying whatever you want... but it does seem silly to me to spend more than a trivial amount extra based on looks, given that it will be hidden within your case.)
  13. Bump on this thread. I am currently looking for this as well.
  14. I am right in the same boat! I was planning on getting the sapphire 7850 2gb oc edition for $199, but I have the budget to go up to a $450ish XFX or Sapphire 7970 3gb (non oc due to reading a ton of threads on not wasting money on factory OC units). Also, I keep reading that 3gb is overkill but my goal is to not WANT to upgrade my new system for a good 3-5 years.

    So...Sapphire 7970 3gb I am thinking is the way to go.
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