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Written by Hank Tolman   
Monday, 29 April 2013
Table of Contents: Page Index
XFX Radeon HD R7790 Video Card
Closer Look: XFX R7790
Testing and Results
Assassin's Creed III
Hitman: Absolution
Far Cry 3
Unigine Heaven 3.0
Temperature and Power Consumption
XFX Radeon HD R7790 Conclusion

XFX Radeon HD R7790 Video Card

Manufacturer: XFX Creation, INC.
Product Name: Radeon HD 7790
Model Number: R7790
Part Number: FX-779A-ZNJ4
UPC: 816909101843 EAN: 4719072277901
Price As Tested: $139.99 (Amazon | Newegg)

Full Disclosure: XFX provided the product sample used in this article.

The PC graphics card industry has been somewhat turned on its head in 2013. As consumers, we've grown accustomed to the annual launches of a new and improved series of GPUs from both sides of the competition. The Radeon HD line has followed this pattern for a while now. With AMD's announcement of the 8000M series plans at the end of 2012, everything seemed to be progressing normally. Throughout Q1, 2013, however, we have been kept waiting for a retail desktop GPU release. With confusing rhetoric in their press releases, it almost appeared as though AMD had disappeared completely from the desktop market this year.

As it turns out, AMD's graphics plans seem to have taken an unexpected turn. Rather than seeing 8000 series GPUs, we are hearing from AMD that their existing line of 7000 series GPUs are stable through 2013. AMD has ensured consumers that this does not mean they won't be releasing any new GPUs in 2013 and the first proof we have of that is the release of Radeon HD 7790. Manufacturing partners are now releasing their versions of the Radeon HD 7790 and Benchmark Reviews has received a sample of the XFX Radeon HD R7790 video card for testing. This article is dedicated discovering what XFX has done with the latest Radeon HD 7000 series GPU, the 7790.


The Radeon HD 7790 is codenamed Bonaire and is the first GPU release from AMD in 2013 for the retail desktop market. The Radeon HD 7790 fills an important performance gap between the HD 7770, known as Cape Verde, and the HD 7850, known as Pitcairn. In fact, it fits into a slot previously only occupied by NVIDIA's GTX 650 Ti. That gap sits between $110 and $180, roughly. On a performance level, the gap between the Radeon HD 7770 and the 7850 is just as large, with the HD 7850 doubling nearly every spec in the HD 7770.

In the Radeon HD 7790, the Bonaire GPU comes fully enabled. This parts a little with conventional die usage, where we generally see an XX50 and an XX70 using the same part but with some functionality disabled on the lower card. What the HD 7790 gives us is 14 CUs for a total of 896 stream processors and 56 texture units. Those numbers look just right for the product's placement. Interestingly enough, though, Bonaire has twice the geometry engines and command processors as Cape Verde, allowing for two primitives per clock over one in Cape Verde. This is on par with Pitcairn and Tahiti. Of course, the ROPs, memory bus, and clock speed all mimic Cape Verde at 16, 128-bit and 1GHz respectively. The memory clock on the HD 7790 has also been increased to 6GHz, higher than both Cape Verde and Pitcairn. Finally, because 28nm Bonaire die is slightly larger than Cape Verde, it naturally comes with higher power consumption. AMD puts the typical board power at 85W for the reference design.

Those are the basics, now let's look into the XFX Radeon HD R7790 and see what they've done with their version.



# RE: XFX Radeon HD R7790 Video CardJeff 2013-04-30 08:44
I'm sure there's a point to this card, but with the HD 7850 at very nearly the same price I don't know what it is.
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# AgreedHank 2013-05-04 07:37
I agree. When the 7790 was released, the 7850 prices dropped to within $15 or $20, and if you get one with a rebate, it could be even less. There is no point to buying a 7790 if you can get a 7850 for the same price.

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# But if I'm not mistaken...TANGLDWEB 2013-06-17 09:05
...this is more a review of what XFX has done with the card, price point's not withstanding. It exist's, has a price point, a baseline performance, AND,.. has the ability to be "Tweaked". This is the Tweak review. Thank you, I'll be here all week! :)
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# RE: XFX Radeon HD R7790 Video Cardfunkydmunky 2013-06-17 21:06
I'm just not seeing the 7850's dropping as close to 7790 levels. I do see the discontinued 1GB 7850 within $20, and I would say that is a better buy then the 7790, but real 2GB 7850/70's are a fair chuck of $$ above a 2GB 7790( yes I'm saying no to 1GB RAM going forward.)
Where is AMD's retaliation to the 650ti Boost? AMD has held the best bang for the $$ for a while. Yet they are dropping the ball in this most important segment? Are they just running out 7850/70 stock to launch the replacements? Why is the 7790 not priced to kill?
AMD is pricing their top dogs extremely aggressive. Why play so soft in the most important mid-low sector?
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# Price/PerformanceCasecutter 2013-06-18 11:58
Bonaire... where to start? AMD gave us the impression that the 7850 1Gb would effectively "dry-up" in the market making a 7790 the cheaper surrogate, while hinting it would be within 10% of such a card. The problem we all still find plenty of 7850 1Gb, and pricing still being hard-hitting. AMD didn't give Bonaire the "oomph" to maintain categorically never more than 10% behind the 7850 1Gb, it just doesn't attain the 1920x quality setting that a 7850 1Ghz without the drop in FPS. It's needs a 1125Mhz Boost and memory that's more approaching 7Ghz to be truly "one step back and one step to the right" of such Pitcairn.

What was Bonaire made to do...? Beat down the GTX650Ti and that it did! Nvidia had commenced and maintained ridiculous pricing, even when they had no business being a $150 card. When it would be naive not to ante-up 10%, and attain a completely different class with a 7850 1Gb. It seemed like reviewers had folks somehow thinking the GTX650Ti as an brilliant choice?

Now, had Bonaire been what was initially highlighted to us, and truly been the "understudy" it would've justified the MSRP of $150. My problem with Bonaire is Boost state and if you OC it you lose that energy saving of it running with a more reasonable clock and efficiency when not need.

Is 7790 bad card no! When price at $125 for such 1075Mhz cards it's a good deal. To make it great AMD could've move both the boost and memory clocks more aggressive, while kept it that when you OC'd, it immobilized Boost as it does now, more just for the plug and play folks. Or gave us the ability to raise core/boost/memory while still maintain the Boost function and throttle efficiency tighter (aka like Nvidia Boost 2.0). Either of those would've perhaps made the 7790 more of a viable option to a 7850 1Gb.
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