PowerColor Radeon HD 7970 PCS+ Vortex II is an example of what kind of performance can be squeezed out of Tahiti XT graphics processors. PowerColor upped the core clocks by 175MHz so the card runs at 1100MHz, which in turn ensured up to 13 percent better performance. Whether it is faster than Nvidia’s GTX 680 depends on the game you’re playing. Namely, sometimes it will be slower and sometimes faster but all in all it won’t have trouble locking horns with GTX 680 cards.
Vortex II cooler will make sure that the GPU isn’t overheating, because operation and long life at such high clocks require quality cooling. In this case, you need not lose sleep as Vortex II will cool the GPU well and still keep noise levels down to an enviable level. In fact, Vortex II cooler is among the quietest we’ve seen on high end graphics cards. We were impressed to see that our additional overclocking to 1175MHz still produced acceptable temperatures and quiet operation.
The only thing that may prevent you from buying this card is that it will not be available in stores for some time. We’ve seen it listed in several stores but there were no exact availability dates. The price starts at about €470, which is €50 higher than PowerColor’s reference HD 7970. The US market should get the card priced some $20 higher than the reference version. In conclusion the card is blazing fast and packs special cooling that will ensure great cooling and low noise levels, which means that the card will definitely be a worthy addition to any gamer’s rig as soon as it’s available.