Select any two GPUs for comparison

Gaming Performance Comparison

Recommended System Requirements
Game Radeon HD 7850 XFX Core Edition Radeon HD 7970 OC Sapphire Edition
Red Dead Redemption 2 158% 51%
Cyberpunk 2077 254% 107%
Doom Eternal 122% 29%
Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 158% 51%
Dragon Ball Z Kakarot 59% 7%
Halo: Reach 18% 52%
Microsoft Flight Simulator 254% 107%
Star Wars: Jedi - Fallen Order 254% 107%
Grand Theft Auto VI 294% 130%
Need For Speed Heat 158% 51%

In terms of overall gaming performance, the graphical capabilities of the AMD Radeon HD 7970 OC Sapphire Edition are significantly better than the AMD Radeon HD 7850 XFX Core Edition.

The HD 7970 has a 90 MHz higher core clock speed and 64 more Texture Mapping Units than the HD 7850. This results in the HD 7970 providing 66.6 GTexel/s better texturing performance. This still holds weight but shader performance is generally more relevant, particularly since both of these GPUs support at least DirectX 10.

The HD 7970 has a 90 MHz higher core clock speed than the HD 7850 and the same number of Render Output Units. This results in the HD 7970 providing 2.9 GPixel/s better pixeling performance. However, both GPUs support DirectX 9 or above, and pixeling performance is only really relevant when comparing older cards.

Both the Radeon HD 7850 XFX Core Edition and the Radeon HD 7970 OC Sapphire Edition were released at the same time, so are likely to be quite similar.

The HD 7970 has 2048 MB more video memory than the HD 7850, so is likely to be much better at displaying game textures at higher resolutions. This is supported by the fact that the HD 7970 also has superior memory performance overall.

The HD 7970 has 113.6 GB/sec greater memory bandwidth than the HD 7850, which means that the memory performance of the HD 7970 is massively better than the HD 7850.

The Radeon HD 7850 XFX Core Edition has 1024 Shader Processing Units and the Radeon HD 7970 OC Sapphire Edition has 2048. However, the actual shader performance of the HD 7850 is 749 and the actual shader performance of the HD 7970 is 1654. The HD 7970 having 905 better shader performance and an altogether better performance when taking into account other relevant data means that the HD 7970 delivers a massively smoother and more efficient experience when processing graphical data than the HD 7850.

The Radeon HD 7970 OC Sapphire Edition requires 230 Watts to run but there is no entry for the HD 7850. We would recommend a PSU with at least 500 Watts for the HD 7850 and a PSU with at least 500 Watts for the HD 7970. The two GPUs have been recommended a PSU with the same amount of wattage. As such, there is no need to worry about which will more significantly affect your yearly electricity bills.

Game FPS Benchmarks On Ultra

GPU Architecture

Core Speed860 MHzvs950 MHz
Boost Clock-vs-
ArchitectureGCN 1.0 Pitcairn PROGCN 1.0 Tahiti XT
OC Potential Good vs Fair
Driver Support Good vs Good
Release Date01 Mar 2012vs01 Mar 2012
GPU LinkGD LinkGD Link

Resolution Performance

1366x768 - green tick vs green tick -
vs green tick
vs green tick
vs green tick
vs green tick

GPU Memory

Memory1024 MBvs3072 MB
Memory Speed1250 MHzvs1425 MHz
Memory Bus256 Bitvs384 Bit
Memory TypeGDDR5vsGDDR5
Memory Bandwidth160GB/secvs273.6GB/sec
L2 Cache 512 KB vs green tick 768 KB
Delta Color Compression no vs no
Memory Performance 0% green tick vs green tick 0%

GPU Display

Shader Processing Units1024vs2048
Actual Shader Performance36%vs80%
Texture Mapping Units64vs128
Texture Rate55 GTexel/svs121.6 GTexel/s
Render Output Units32vs32
Pixel Rate27.5 GPixel/svs30.4 GPixel/s

GPU Outputs

Max Digital Resolution (WxH)4096x2160vs4096x2160
VGA Connections0vs0
DVI Connections2vs1
HDMI Connections1vs1
DisplayPort Connections-vs-

GPU Power Requirements

Max Power-230 Watts
Recommended PSU500 Wattsvs500 Watts & 33 Amps

GPU Features

Shader Model5.0vs5.0
Open GL4.4vs4.4
Open CL-vs-
Notebook GPUnono

GPU Supporting Hardware

Recommended ProcessorIntel Core i5-3330 3.0GHzvsIntel Core i5-2500K 3.3GHz
Recommended RAM8 GBvs8 GB
Maximum Recommended Gaming Resolution1920x1080vs1920x1080

Gaming Performance Value

Battlefield 3vs
Crysis 3vs
Tomb Raidervs
Performance Value

GPU Mini Review

Mini ReviewRadeon HD 7850 XFX Core Edition is a special edition of the powerful Radeon HD 7850. See the standard version for more information about it.
This edition features a special cooling system that allows twice as much heat dissipation when compared to the reference AMD cooling system but its performance is still the same, as there's no over-clocking out of the box.
Radeon HD 7970 OC Sapphire Edition is a special Edition of the Radeon HD 7970. See the page of the standard edition for more information.
The new features include increases in the core and memory clocks that went from 925MHz to 950MHz and from 1375MHz to 1425MHz, respectively. However, Sapphire claims that the user can OC it even more at home to a core-clock of 1000MHz and a memory-clock of 1450MHz.
Benchmarks indicate a 3% performance boost when compared to the standard Radeon HD 7970.
Therefore, all games, including very demanding ones, should be fully playable at max settings and with very attractive resolutions.
Recommended CPU
Possible GPU Upgrades
GPU Variants