AMD Radeon HD 7990 6GB Review

Written by Harry Butler

April 24, 2013 | 05:01

Tags: #7990 #hd-7990 #hd-7990-review

Companies: #amd

Power Consumption (Idle and Gaming)

Putting a realistic, repeatable load on a GPU to get a decent idea of its real world power consumption and thermal output has long been something with which we've experimented here at bit-tech. We've found that synthetic benchmarks such as FurMark thrash the GPU constantly, which simply isn't reflective of how a GPU will be used when gaming.

It's such a hardcore test that any GPU under scrutiny is almost guaranteed to hit its thermal limit; the mark at which the card's firmware will kick in, speeding up the fan to keep the GPU within safe temperature limits. Conversely, simply leaving a game such as Crysis running at a certain point also isn't reflective of real-world use. There's no guarantee that the GPU is being pushed as hard as other titles might push it, and the load will vary between play-throughs.

We used to use the Canyon Flight test of 3DMark 06, as this was a punishing and repeatable test. However, we've now adopted Unigine's Heaven 3.0 benchmark, as its DirectX 11 features will stress all the parts of a modern GPU. We use the default settings and a resolution of 2,560 x 1,600. We then hit the Benchmark button and watch the power draw from the wall between the grass field scene and the second dragon scene - this is the toughest portion of the test for both Nvidia and AMD hardware.

Power consumption (idle)

Windows 7 Aero Desktop

  • Nvidia GeForce GTX 660 2GB
  • AMD Radeon HD 7850 2GB
  • AMD Radeon HD 7870 2GB
  • AMD Radeon HD 7970 3GB GHz Edition
  • Nvidia GeForce GTX Titan 6GB
  • Nvidia GeForce GTX 670 2GB
  • Nvidia GeForce GTX 680 2GB
  • Nvidia GeForce GTX 660 Ti 2GB
  • AMD Radeon HD 7950 3GB with Boost
  • Nvidia GeForce GTX 690 4GB
  • AMD Radeon HD 7990 6GB
  • AMD Radeon HD 7970 3GB GHz Edition x 2 (CrossFire)
  • 98
  • 99
  • 100
  • 101
  • 103
  • 104
  • 105
  • 106
  • 106
  • 117
  • 125
  • 131
0
25
50
75
100
125
150
System Power consumption in Watts

Power consumption (load)

Unigine Heaven Benchmark (2,560 x 1,600, default settings)

  • AMD Radeon HD 7850 2GB
  • AMD Radeon HD 7870 2GB
  • Nvidia GeForce GTX 660 2GB
  • Nvidia GeForce GTX 660 Ti 2GB
  • Nvidia GeForce GTX 670 2GB
  • AMD Radeon HD 7950 3GB with Boost
  • Nvidia GeForce GTX 680 2GB
  • AMD Radeon HD 7970 3GB GHz Edition
  • Nvidia GeForce GTX Titan 6GB
  • Nvidia GeForce GTX 690 4GB
  • AMD Radeon HD 7990 6GB
  • AMD Radeon HD 7970 3GB GHz Edition x 2 (CrossFire)
  • 196
  • 216
  • 230
  • 240
  • 252
  • 255
  • 277
  • 312
  • 348
  • 395
  • 480
  • 564
0
100
200
300
400
500
600
System Power consumption in Watts

Thermal Performance (Idle and Gaming)

We also have GPU-Z running in the background, and leave the Unigine benchmark running for ten minutes to record a peak GPU temperature. We present the temperature as a delta T (the difference between the temperature of the GPU and the ambient temperature in our labs).

Heat (idle)

Windows 7 Aero Desktop

  • AMD Radeon HD 7870 2GB
  • Asus Ares II
  • Nvidia GeForce GTX 660 2GB
  • Nvidia GeForce GTX Titan 6GB
  • AMD Radeon HD 7770 1GB
  • Nvidia GeForce GTX 690 4GB
  • AMD Radeon HD 7970 3GB GHz Edition
  • Nvidia GeForce GTX 670 2GB
  • Nvidia GeForce GTX 680 2GB
  • Nvidia GeForce GTX 660 Ti
  • AMD Radeon HD 7750 1GB
  • AMD Radeon HD 7990 6GB
  • Nvidia GeForce GTX 650 1GB
  • AMD Radeon HD 7970 3GB
  • AMD Radeon HD 7950 3GB
  • AMD Radeon HD 7950 3GB with Boost
  • 6
  • 9
  • 9
  • 10
  • 10
  • 10
  • 11
  • 11
  • 11
  • 11
  • 12
  • 12
  • 14
  • 14
  • 15
  • 16
0
3
5.5
8
10.5
13
15.5
18
Delta T in °C

Heat (load)

Unigine Heaven Benchmark (2,560 x 1,600, default settings)

  • Nvidia GeForce GTX 650 1GB
  • Asus Ares II
  • AMD Radeon HD 7870 2GB
  • Nvidia GeForce GTX 660 2GB
  • AMD Radeon HD 7750 1GB
  • Nvidia GeForce GTX 660 Ti
  • AMD Radeon HD 7770 1GB
  • AMD Radeon HD 7950 3GB with Boost
  • Club 3D Radeon HD 7990 6GB
  • AMD Radeon HD 7970 3GB
  • AMD Radeon HD 7990 6GB
  • Nvidia GeForce GTX 680 2GB
  • AMD Radeon HD 7970 3GB GHZ Editon
  • Nvidia GeForce GTX 670 2GB
  • AMD Radeon HD 7950 3GB
  • Nvidia GeForce GTX Titan 6GB
  • Nvidia GeForce GTX 690 4GB
  • 29
  • 36
  • 40
  • 41
  • 42
  • 43
  • 44
  • 50
  • 53
  • 53
  • 54
  • 54
  • 54
  • 55
  • 57
  • 59
  • 63
0
10
20
30
40
50
60
70
Delta T in °C

*as there's no stock model of the HD 7850 2GB, it is not included in these graphs
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