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Gigabyte Radeon HD 7970 Super Overclock: Now With Windforce 5X

A Cool Radeon HD 7970 That You Can't Buy

Now, here's the bad news: according to Gigabyte, there are only about 200 Radeon HD 7970 Super Overclock with Windforce 5X cards in the world, and they're all stuck in Asia and Europe. So, if you're reading this story from one of those continents, there's a slim chance you can get your hands on one, limited though the card may be. If you're in the U.S., unfortunately, the card won't be found for sale. 

This is more a demonstration of what Gigabyte might be able to achieve with its Windforce 5X cooler than a mass-market card. But we're at least happy to report that our initial fears of ghastly acoustics were unfounded, and that it's even possible to improve on the original sample by removing the memory's thermal pads, by re-applying thermal compound, and by setting up our own fan speed profile.

Most importantly (and more noteworthy than the benchmarks and comparisons to other cards), we see now that this type of cooling solution is a viable way to dissipate heat without recirculating warm air inside a chassis, as many aftermarket designs are guilty of doing. The only shame is that you're required to use a very particular type of chassis. Otherwise, this approach to cooling would, in fact, simply blow heat around inside.

We cannot give this card our recommendation or any sort of award. We don't know when it'll be available or how much it will cost. And we do know that customers in the U.S. won't be able to get it. We are fans of Gigabyte's cooling solution, though, which does prove to be innovative. It's not just some third-party heat sink re-branded for this one card. So, we congratulate Gigabyte for daring to create something new. 

The only changes we'd suggest would be a less aggressive fan speed profile and a few minor adjustments to the hardware finish. Otherwise, the card could be a great enthusiast's collector's piece.

Enter To Win Your Own Radeon HD 7970 Super Overclock!

Click here for your chance to win Gigabyte's Radeon HD 7970 Super Overclock.

The contest opens on August 6, 2012 9:00 PM PDT and closes on August 20, 2012 9:00 PM PDT.

One (1) Winner Will Be Chosen Randomly. Prize (provided by Gigabyte): One (1) Gigabyte Radeon HD 7970 Super Overclock Graphics Card with Windforce 5X Cooling

DUE TO LEGAL REQUIREMENTS, THIS CONTEST IS LIMITED TO LEGAL RESIDENTS OF THE USA (EXCLUDING RI) AND 18 YEARS OF AGE OR OLDER.

UNLESS OTHERWISE NOTED, ALL PERSONAL INFORMATION WILL ONLY BE USED TO QUALIFY AND CONTACT THE WINNER.

  • unksol
    While the cooler is an interesting concept, and the cards components are solid build quality and attention to detail seem to be severely lacking. The cooler isn't even designed for this board. Loose screws? thermal pads and TIM you have to scrape off/replace and void your warranty? And on a review sample of all things. I can't imagine one off the line would improve that situation...

    And while good on Toms for reporting it why isnt the card tested as it comes from the factory so we know what to actually expect...
    Reply
  • I will surely like to have that Gigabyte HD 7970 Super Overclock graphics card and be the only one in the US to claim so.
    Reply
  • amuffin
    The Gigabyte SOC Cards were always on of the most intriguing series out there of GPU's!
    Reply
  • jase240
    I like the idea of this card, but really that thing is LOUD. I have an Asus GTX 670 Direct CUII TOP and its silent even at load its barely audible. Personally I think if someone is going to overclock to the extent that they need a card that keeps the ambient temps to be low, they will probably be liquid cooling their CPU with a radiator at the top of their case(that's what I'm doing).

    Honestly though if this card could be a little quieter it would be a great standard considering most people do still overclock with air coolers, and one thing bad for air coolers is a hot GPU blowing air towards the CPU.
    Reply
  • goodguy713
    To be honest i think its a pretty sexy card.. loud yea.. but still a sweet card.. ill keep my fingers crossed..
    Reply
  • JeanLuc
    Yikes at the fan noise. Makes me glad I invested in a water cooling loop!
    Reply
  • Over 90 degrees celcius? That card might not last too long if its under load all the time!
    Reply
  • hellfire24
    gigabyte gtx 7970 *house brick* edition.
    lol
    Reply
  • gsxrme
    Water cooling is truly the only option for really overclocking. Those fans are way to noisy. I wish toms had a 1300Mhz GTX680 listed because my factory ASUS reference board even hits 1300Mhz Core / 6750Mhz Ram with no mods or voltage tweaks. I don't see this as a breakthrough and with the cost of 2500 res monitors less than 1% of the market are running that high.
    Reply
  • nforce4max
    This card isn't meant for the chickens that want cards to mostly silent but is for those who are much more aggressive in overclocking while being more forgiving when it comes to noise. This card isn't that loud compared to some rack mounted servers, I think that you guys could have pushed it further (why not) despite the power consumption. I like the build quality despite the R10 rated inductors that are driving the memory and gpu Q_Q As for the cooler I wonder if the heat pips only make contact with the vapor chamber or actually part of it? It isn't hard to design a good cooler but will cost more to produce.

    A lot of noise is a lot cheaper than going liquid cooling and as hot as it gets where I live you Need a really good cooling solution.
    Reply