Until now we are used to the fact that after a couple of months after nVidia and AMD launch their new referent cards, we will get their improved models by the other companies. This goes a bit slower for the high end cards and faster for the low end ones. We are reviewing three of these cards that have been improved by Sapphire. With their non-standard design of the PCB and power units these cards are able to spread their wings and show their real potential of their GCN architecture and 28nm production method. For the ultimate overclock of these cards we have a top of the line coolant system by Sapphire, this time represented by heat pipes and two fans.
The HD 7870 OC has a coolant with four heat pipes, while on all of the 7900 there is an improved version of five heat pipes and more dissipation ribs. The common thing is a great acoustics in all of these models. All of the three models, even when stressed by a heavy overclock are almost silent. When aiming at the raw performances, the symbiosis of great processor and coolant shines the greatest. This makes these cards give out almost class better performances than the referent ones. With this in mind we can see that the 7870OC will beat the GTX 580 and it has almost the same specs as the referent HD 7950 and the 7950 OC is as good as the referent 7970, as for the strongest one the Sapphire OC 7970 takes the lead and gets the crown from GTX 680 and the best thing is it does that silently.
At the end the question is if they are worth the money, because they are 10 to 15 percent more expensive than the “regular models”. But for additional few euros, the serious buyer won’t back off when faced with these great speeds and the comfort of silent gaming.