Radeon HD 7800 series belongs to the so called sweet spot segment of graphics cards. The card is aimed at more budget conscious gamers playing at 1680x1050 and 1950x1080. Our today’s test sample was one of the fastest HD 7850 cards – XFX’s Black Edition DD Radeon 7850 975M.
XFX did a great job when it comes to designing the cooler and factory overclocking. The card’s GPU runs 115MHz faster while the memory is 50MHz faster (200MHz effectively). This results in 7 to 11 percent performance increase when compared to reference clocks. The included 2GB of GDDR5 memory and 256-bit memory interface also come in handy when gaming at 1920x1080.
Bear in mind that the XFX Black Edition’s PCB was borrowed from XFX’s HD 7870 and is 24cm long, meaning it’s longer than most other Radeon 7850 cards. Good thing is that XFX also borrowed the same cards Double Dissipation cooler that boasts two silent fans. For starters, this means that the card will never overheat as the cooler is more than enough for the needs of Pitcairn Pro chips used on Radeon HD 7850 cards.
The Black Edition R7850 is silent in idle mode whereas during gaming, we had to turn down all other fans in our case only to hear it run. The DD cooler works great both at factory clocks and after our further overclocking.
One of the flagship features of AMD's graphics cards made in 28nm is low consumption, something that our today's sample already proved. Although overclocked, the Black Edition Radeon 7850 provides performance better or similar to Radeon HD 6950 while maintaining lower consumption.
Perhaps the only downside to this XFX's Black DD Radeon 7850 975M 2GB graphics card is the price. It currently goes for €258, making it the priciest HD 7850 around. On the other side of the fence, Nvidia offers GTX 560 Ti 448 cores that can stand up to the HD 7850 and is prices similarly. However, if you’re not willing to compromise and are looking for silence as well as a high factory overclock with headroom for further overclocking, then there’s no excuse why XFX’s Black Edition R7850 shouldn’t make your shopping list. XFX has once again shown that it’s capable of making quality HD 7850 cards so the only thing left is to hope the price will be slashed once Nvidia rolls out its sweet spot cards.