ASUS Radeon HD7970 DirectCU II Benchmark results






In today’s market we have a range of graphics cards to choose not to mention one that best suits our needs, requirements and especially to our pockets. However, the sector is pretty demanding in this area, not all graphics cards are suitable for this. And today we present a benchmark comparison of a graphics card that is well located at the top of this Gamer sector, we are talking about the ASUS Radeon HD 7970 DirectCU II.

Asus assemblers have brought their own models with custom coolers and factory increased frequencies to provide more performance point to this already powerful graphics card. This is the case of the Asus DirectCU II, where a large sink incorporate triple slot of the 7970 to significantly improve cooling (and noise level).

Let’s see its technical characteristics.

TECHNICAL.

HD7970 DirectCU II specs

Specs

As we see, this chart from Asus it has a factory overclock of 75Mhz on the core to become part of they call the Ghz Edition, while memory has been given an extra 25Mhz to move from the base 1375MHz (5500MHz effective) to 1400MHz (5600Mhz effective). Another difference is the power supply requirement, since this version of Asus needs two PCI-Express 8-pin for service, while the reference model needed 1 and a 6-pin.

Moreover, removing the heatsink and the video outputs (which allows the simultaneous connection of up to 6 screens), the card is exactly like the AMD reference model. It features the same technologies such as AMD Zero Core Power, technology used to reduce the consumption of the graphics card when in idle completely off the GPU core.

TESTING.

To test this Asus Radeon HD7970 DirectCU II the following hardware was used:

– Intel Core i7-2600K @ 4,4 Ghz.
– Asus Sabertooth P67 B3.
– Noctua NH-D14.
– Kingston HyperX 2x4GB 2400MHz Beast.
– FSP Aurum Pro 1200W.
– Cooler Master HAF XM.
– Neutron GTX Corsair 240GB SSD.
– Western Digital Black 2TB SATA3.

The operating system used was Windows 7 Ultimate x64 SP1 with all patches installed, and graphics drivers used was the AMD Catalyst 13.3 BETA.

We start things off with a screenshot of GPU-Z.

GPUZ-stock HD7970 DirectCU II

Temperature

For measuring temperature Open Hardware Monitor has been employed, and Delta is the measured data of temperature, ie, the measured temperature minus ambient temperature. Thus, although the latter varies, is not affected in the comparison measurement.

The following graph results have been obtained with the fan on automatic, and in the following situations: Idle long (30 minutes of complete rest), Idle (10 minutes rest), Heaven Benchmark (maximum temperature during the benchmark ), Games (maximum temperature playing) and Furmark for 10 minutes.

hd7970-directcu-ii-temps

As if this data does not tell you anything, let’s see it compared to the results obtained with other graphic cards that have passed through our hands.

hd7970-directcu-ii-temps-co

As we see, despite the huge heatsink Asus DirectCU II, this card is quite hot, although the temperature is lower than the reference model, which is not bad considering it has factory overclock. However, best results expected.

The consumption data was measured with eSocket Efergy meter plug that was plugged only to the computer. That is, the consumption data is complete regardless of the monitor, speakers or other possible devices. Therefore, we also wanted to include the data of maximal (Full LOAD), in addition to stressing with Furmark graphic processor with Prime95.

As we see, at 440W maximum consumption we might as well run this card with a good quality 600W power supply. Now let’s see it compared to the other cards.

hd7970-directcu-ii-consumpt

Here we can see that, interestingly, the consumption of this Asus 7970 is lower than the AMD reference charts.

SYNTHETIC TEST.

In this section, we dedicate the ASUS Radeon HD7970 DirectCU II to various synthetic benchmarks to measure its performance in different fields.

HD7970 DirectCU II Heaven-4.0-Settings

This benchmark comes with several pre-configured presets, but the most demanding of these preset does not use a full HD resolution, so we have customized the settings to choose the most demanding settings.

Heaven 4.0 Settings

This was the result:

HD7970 DirectCU II Heaven-4.0-high

As this benchmark version is relatively recent we have many other graphic cards for comparison. However, here’s a comparison with a GTX670 which is what we had in our possession.

hd7970-directcu-ii-Heaven-4

3DMark 11

Now on to the performance in 3DMark 11. This test is going to show specific DirectX11 graphics power.

HD7970 DirectCU II 3DMark11-Performance 1 HD7970 DirectCU II 3DMark11-Extreme

Since this data does not say much, let’s see it compared to other cards.

3DMark11-HD7970 DirectCU II-vs other cards

As we can see, the performance of this Asus Radeon HD7970 DirectCU II is superior to the AMD reference model (also the drivers are more polished than at the time of testing the reference model), but still lower than the gains obtained with the MSI GTX680 Lightning.

3DMark

Let us now refer to this chart to the latest version of the famous 3DMark. These were the results:

3DMark-FireStrike-Extreme-HD7970 DirectCU II

3DMark-Benchmarks HD7970 DirectCU II

And now again compared to the ASUS GTX670.

ASUS Radeon HD7970 DirectCU II

Again, this 7970 performs just higher than the GTX670 but just barely.

Games.

Next we show the performance tests in some of the most popular games in the current scene. Performance is measured in FPS (Frames per Second) and has been measured with FRAPS benchmarking utility for sessions of 20 minutes, trying to test in graphic intensive missions as possible. Each game is different, but in all cases the graphics have been set to maximum at a resolution of 1920 × 1080, after all this is what anyone who will buy a ASUS Radeon HD7970 DirectCU II graphics card will want to know: How it plays in full HD.

The methodology in different games is as follows:

  • Resident Evil 6: benchmark utility.
  • Tomb Raider: benchmark utility.
  • Metro 2033 benchmark utility (5 runs).
  • Assassin’s Creed 3: 20 minutes going from one place to another in the city, climbing towers and running as quickly as possible.
  • Battlefield 3: Game of 20 minutes on the map “Operation Firestorm”.
  • Guild Wars 2: Game of 20 minutes, 5 minutes to city overloaded (Lion’s Arch) and 15 doing various missions.
  • Bioshock Infinite: benchmark utility.

game benchmark HD7970 DirectCU II

The result of FPS in games has been excellent.

CONCLUSION.

The ASUS Radeon HD7970 DirectCU II is a good quantum leap with respect to the reference Radeon HD7970, although AMD still has a long way to go to with their drivers to be at the height of the NVIDIA GTX680, its direct competitor. Thanks to the massive DirectCU II heatsink, Asus has managed to maintain decent temperatures with this card and low noise level, so that in this respect we can say they have done a good job. However, I miss native HDMI output, as using an adapter it performs scaling in large monitors and needs a fix by software (which fortunately the Catalyst Control Center brings this feature).

Keep in mind that if it is true that this card costs about the same as the GTX670 from the same brand that we used for comparison in this benchmark and achieves higher gains, there are other 7970 models cheaper and offer the same performance, but, not with the quality of materials used by this model from Asus.

PROS:

– Good performance.
– Decent temperatures and low noise level.
– Factory Overclock.
– Dual BIOS.
– High-quality components.

CONS:

– Price.
– Requires 2 PCI-Express 8-pin.
– No native HDMI output.
– Takes up 3 slots.

Therefore, we believe that this ASUS Radeon HD7970 DirectCU II is worthy of our recommendation.