Gigabyte HD 7950 WindForce & MSI HD 7950 Twin Frozr III Review
Since the HD 7950 was launched several months ago, we have seen AMD’s top to bottom HD 7000-series take shape and gradually morph into a great looking lineup that offers something for everyone. The most recent introduction was the HD 7870 and HD 7850 pairing which succeeded in hitting all of the high points in two very competitive prices. Unfortunately, the momentum was taken out of AMD’s sails when the GTX 680 launched at a lower than expected price,
The advent of Kepler left some of the board partners out in the cold since their custom HD 7950 cards tended to carry a premium on top of the already hefty $449 reference price. That has changed over the last week since the HD 7950 has received a cut from its somewhat lofty price tag to a more modest $399. Not only does this change make it all that much more affordable but any down-market movement could also put some pressure upon NVIDIA’s inevitable lineup additions.
In light of these changes, we thought it was a good time to look at a few more HD 7950 cards since they are now more affordable than ever. For this review, we’ve chosen the MSI Twin Frozr III version and Gigabyte’s Windforce 3X.
In terms of specifications, neither MSI nor Gigabyte have strayed all that far from the reference specifications with their initial custom HD 7950 offerings. The Twin Frozr III gets a modest bump while the Windforce 3X hits the 900MHz mark but in both cases, memory speeds stick to reference clocks. It seems like both MSI and Gigabyte and hedging their bets until they’re ready to introduce Lightning and Super Overclock versions respectively. As you may have expected, their prices are nearly identical as well at around $439.
At least on paper, neither of these cards really holds the edge over the other but consumers will ultimately have to make a decision between one of them or what their competitors are offering. Both have excellent heatsink designs, three year warranties and some great looking features so it will be interesting to see if either comes to the forefront once the dust settles in this review.
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