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Sapphire Radeon HD 7950 3GB Vapor-X Review

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Testing of the Sapphire HD 7950 3GB Vapor-X will consist of running it and comparison cards through the OverclockersClub.com suite of games and synthetic benchmarks. This will test the performance against many popular competitors. Comparisons will be made to cards of a range of capabilities to show where each card falls on the performance ladder. The games used are some of today's newest and most popular titles, which should be able to provide an idea of how the cards perform relative to each other.

The system specifications will remain the same throughout the testing. No adjustment will be made to the respective control panels during the testing, with the exception of the 3DMark 11 testing, where PhysX will be disabled in the NVIDIA Control Panel, if applicable. I will first test the cards at stock speeds, and then overclocked to see the effects of an increase in clock speed. The cards will be placed in order from highest to lowest performance in each graph to show where they fall by comparison. All NVIDIA comparison cards will be using the 305.37 drivers; AMD will be using Catalyst 12.6 drivers.


Comparison Video Cards:



  • Sapphire HD 7950 3GB Vapor-X Core 1100 MHz, Memory 1450 MHz

Overclocking the Sapphire HD 7950 3 GB Vapor-X was an interesting endeavor. Using the included Sapphire TriXX software was quite easy and intuitive, so the software really wasn't an issue at all. Using Unigine Heaven 3.0 looping for 30 minutes at a time, I slowly brought up the core clocks; after settling on a maximum core clock, I did the same thing with the memory clocks (while leaving the core clock at the maximum stable value). Usually, this process goes quite smoothly, but for some reason, this card was a bit more picky than most and took me a lot longer to settle in on stable values. Thankfully, after hours of testing, I arrived at the rock solid values of 1100 MHz core clock and 1450 MHz memory clock using 1200 mV and the board power limit at +20. This amounts to an overclock of 150 MHz (16%) on the core and 200 MHz (16%) on the memory over the stock boost clocks. Not too shabby, but I was hoping for more.



Maximum Clock Speeds:

Testing for the maximum clock speed consists of looping Unigine 3.0 for 30 minutes each to see where the clock speeds fail when pushed. If the clock speed adjustment fails, then the clock speeds are adjusted and the test is rerun until each card passes the testing.



  • Gaming Tests:
  1. Metro 2033
  2. Batman: Arkham City
  3. Battlefield 3
  4. Sid Meier’s Civilization V
  5. Unigine Heaven Benchmark 3.0
  6. DiRT 3
  7. Mafia II
  8. 3DMark 11
  • Usage:
  1. Temperature
  2. Power Consumption

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