AMD HD 7770 'Cape Verde' Review

👤by Richard Weatherstone Comments 📅15-02-12
Cape Verde Specifications
The AMD HD7700 series of graphics cards, codenamed Cape Verde are the third addition to the HD7000 series product line.

Prices are set to start at $159USD for the HD7770, while the AMD Radeon™ HD 7750 will be as low as $109USD. As with all new entrants into the market, prices are inflated a little and with the unstable economic markets we will have to wait and see what UK retail prices pan out at. Having a quick perusal over the specifications of the card I would expect the HD7770 to be priced between that of the GTX560Ti and it's smaller brother the GTX550Ti. This will no doubt disappoint some people who were looking for a 'cheap as chips' graphics card but I will reserve my own judgement until we have sampled the graphics cards performance.

Cape Verde

Based on the new 28nm manufacturing process, AMD have managed to cram in 1.5 billion transistors. The 640 stream processors afford 1.28 TFLOPS of computational power. The cores reference clockspeed is a blistering 1GHz and coupled with a gigabyte of GDDR5 clocked at 1125MHz gives a texture fillrate of 40 GT/s and a pixel fillrate of 16 GP/s.

The Cape Verde Core features 640 stream processors for the HD7770 and 512 for the HD7750, each has 512KB of L2 read-write cache but sadly we see the new core doesn't have the same 320-bit memory interface like we saw with the Tahiti but makes do with 128-bit. Regardless, the HD7770 produces up to 72 GB/s of bandwidth which is still impressive.

It is worth noting too that the typical board power consumption is reported to be around 80W with an idle power consumption of less than 3W thanks to AMD ZeroCore power technology. Let's see how these specs measure up to the competition:

Not a bad showing at all. Although the card falls a little short of GTX560 specification, it is clocked much higher and therefore the deficit in cores and ROPs may be compensated a little by the superior clockspeed of the HD7770. Power consumption is much lower than the GTX560 too which will appeal to those looking to save a few pennies on the electricity bill. To be fair to the AMD HD7770 it isn't aimed at the GTX560 Ti, more the GTX560's smaller brother, the GTX550Ti so while we don't currently have a 500Ti for comparison purposes, this should be taken into consideration when we test the card later in the review.

It is worth noting at this point that the replacement for the hugely popular 6800 series, codenamed Pitcairn which will cater for the mid-high range of graphics card solutions will surface around March and with the Tahiti cored HD7900 series already upon us, the HD7000 series will be bringing up the rear.

So, while the HD7700 series may well be considered as 'entry level', it has all of the features of the flagship 7900 range of GPU's which include GCN (Graphics Core Next), Eyefinity 2.0, HD3D, ZeroCore Power and PowerTune to name but a few.

18 pages 1 2 3 4 > »