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

In Video: Custom Fan Speed Profile And Stress Test

Custom Fan Speed Profile

We customized the Gigabyte Radeon HD 7970 Super Overclock's fan speed profile based on the previous page's noise benchmarks. We used a 30% duty cycle at idle, which should keep temperatures below 40 degrees Celsius in a 28 degree room. If you can cool your room to 22 degrees Celsius, it's possible to drop to 20% or 25% fan speed, resulting in 32 or 34 dB(A), respectively.

We pushed the fan speed from 55% to 100% once the GPU hits 85 to 92 degrees Celsius. Altogether, these settings are good enough to run below 50% in games and and the near-55% needed for full loads imposed by compute-oriented apps.

Our first benchmark shows that our custom fan speed profile manages to keep the card cool enough under heavy load.

The temperature goes all the way up to 86 degrees Celsius using our custom fan speed profile, but it only gets that high under heavy load. You won't see numbers that high while gaming, as we'll see later.

Six Minutes of Stress Testing

We used six minutes of stress testing to further illustrate the behavior of our custom fan speed profile. Six minutes are enough for Gigabyte's Radeon HD 7970 Super Overclock to its maximum temperatures and fan speed.

Check out our graph, spectrograms, and video. You can compare specific parts of the graph and spectrograms to the video by jumping to the time you see on the graph in the video.

Bottom Line

Once our custom fan profile is applied to make the Radeon HD 7970 Super Overclock quieter, it becomes an aggressively tuned model that'd work well in a CrossFire configuration. Provided you have the space on your motherboard, two cards can operate side-by-side without them interfering with each other (or an overclocked CPU). Ideally, warm air is simply exhausted out the side of your case.

  • 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...
  • 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.
  • amuffin
    The Gigabyte SOC Cards were always on of the most intriguing series out there of GPU's!
  • 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.
  • goodguy713
    To be honest i think its a pretty sexy card.. loud yea.. but still a sweet card.. ill keep my fingers crossed..
  • JeanLuc
    Yikes at the fan noise. Makes me glad I invested in a water cooling loop!
  • Over 90 degrees celcius? That card might not last too long if its under load all the time!
  • hellfire24
    gigabyte gtx 7970 *house brick* edition.
  • 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.
  • 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.