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AMD’s driver team is to thank for the reshuffling of results in Skyrim. Across the board a Radeon HD 7970 GHz Edition beats Nvidia’s GeForce GTX 680. In fact, once you hit 2560x1600, even the 7950 gets its licks in, outperforming the 680 in the High and Ultra quality presets.
The Radeon HD 7970 GHz Edition, specifically, finishes just ahead of the older 7970 at all three resolutions, in all six test scenarios. Is the delta between both cards worth $50? Decidedly not—the 7970 has you covered all the way through 2560x1600, and at no point does the GHz card’s extra performance help it make or break playability.
It’s also worth noting that our Radeon HD 7970 overclocks right up to the 1125 MHz limit imposed by AMD’s Overdrive software. Coupled with a 1500 MHz memory clock, you can quite easily exceed the performance of the stock 7970 GHz Edition (and come very close to the same card overclocked) for $50 less.