R9 290X vs HD 7970M Crossfire

General info

Comparison of graphics card architecture, market segment, value for money and other general parameters.

Place in our rating
 
Value for money (0-100)
2.26
 
7.66
Architecture
GCN
 
GCN
GPU code name
Hawaii XT
 
Wimbledon XT
Market segment
Desktop
 
Laptop
Release date
24 October 2013 (7 years ago)
 
1 May 2012 (9 years ago)
Launch price (MSRP)
$549
 
no data
Price now
$469 (0.9x MSRP)
 
$126

Technical specs

General performance parameters such as number of shaders, GPU core base clock and boost clock speeds, manufacturing process, texturing and calculation speed. These parameters indirectly speak of performance, but for precise assessment you have to consider their benchmark and gaming test results. Note that power consumption of some graphics cards can well exceed their nominal TDP, especially when overclocked.

Pipelines / CUDA cores
2816
 
2560
Core clock speed
1000 MHz
 
850 MHz
Number of transistors
6,200 million
 
no data
Manufacturing process technology
28 nm
 
28 nm
Thermal design power (TDP)
290 Watt
 
200 Watt
Texture fill rate
176.0
 
no data
Floating-point performance
5,632 gflops
 
no data

Compatibility, dimensions and requirements

Information on Radeon R9 290X and Radeon HD 7970M Crossfire compatibility with other computer components. Useful when choosing a future computer configuration or upgrading an existing one. For desktop video cards it's interface and bus (motherboard compatibility), additional power connectors (power supply compatibility). For notebook video cards it's notebook size, connection slot and bus, if the video card is inserted into a slot instead of being soldered to the notebook motherboard.

Laptop size
no data
 
large
Interface
PCIe 3.0 x16
 
no data
Length
275 mm
 
no data
Supplementary power connectors
1x 6-pin + 1x 8-pin
 
no data

Memory

Parameters of memory installed: its type, size, bus, clock and resulting bandwidth. Note that GPUs integrated into processors have no dedicated VRAM and use a shared part of system RAM.

Memory type
GDDR5
 
GDDR5
Maximum RAM amount
4 GB
 
no data
Memory bus width
512 Bit
 
2x 256 Bit
Memory clock speed
5000 MHz
 
4800 MHz
Memory bandwidth
320.0 GB/s
 
no data
Shared memory
-
 
-

Video outputs and ports

Types and number of video connectors present on the reviewed GPUs. As a rule, data in this section is precise only for desktop reference ones (so-called Founders Edition for NVIDIA chips). OEM manufacturers may change the number and type of output ports, while for notebook cards availability of certain video outputs ports depends on the laptop model rather than on the card itself.

Display Connectors
2x DVI, 1x HDMI, 1x DisplayPort
 
no data
Eyefinity
+
 
-
HDMI
+
 
-

Technologies

Supported technological solutions. This information will prove useful if you need some particular technology for your purposes.

AppAcceleration
+
 
-

API support

APIs supported, including particular versions of those APIs.

DirectX
12 (12_0)
 
DirectX 11.1, Shader 5.0
Shader Model
6.3
 
no data
OpenGL
4.6
 
no data
OpenCL
2.0
 
no data
Vulkan
1.2.131
 
-

Benchmark performance

Non-gaming benchmark performance comparison. Note that overall benchmark performance is measured in points in 0-100 range.

Overall score

This is our combined benchmark performance rating. We are regularly improving our combining algorithms, but if you find some perceived inconsistencies, feel free to speak up in comments section, we usually fix problems quickly.

R9 290X 27.55 +9.8%
HD 7970M Crossfire 25.08

3DMark 11 Performance GPU

3DMark 11 is an obsolete DirectX 11 benchmark by Futuremark. It used four tests based on two scenes, one being few submarines exploring the submerged wreck of a sunken ship, the other is an abandoned temple deep in the jungle. All the tests are heavy with volumetric lighting and tessellation, and despite being done in 1280x720 resolution, are relatively taxing. Discontinued in January 2020, 3DMark 11 is now superseded by Time Spy.

R9 290X 16168 +45.4%
HD 7970M Crossfire 11119

3DMark Vantage Performance

3DMark Vantage is an outdated DirectX 10 benchmark using 1280x1024 screen resolution. It taxes the graphics card with two scenes, one depicting a girl escaping some militarized base located within a sea cave, the other displaying a space fleet attack on a defenseless planet. It was discontinued in April 2017, and Time Spy benchmark is now recommended to be used instead.

R9 290X 37284 +19.8%
HD 7970M Crossfire 31127

Mining hashrates

Cryptocurrency mining performance of Radeon R9 290X and Radeon HD 7970M Crossfire. Usually measured in megahashes per second.

Bitcoin / BTC (SHA256)
623 Mh/s
 
no data
Decred / DCR (Decred)
1.07 Gh/s
 
no data
Ethereum / ETH (DaggerHashimoto)
25.75 Mh/s
 
no data
Monero / XMR (CryptoNight)
0.76 kh/s
 
no data
Zcash / ZEC (Equihash)
350 Sol/s
 
no data

Gaming performance

Let's see how good the compared graphics cards are for gaming. Particular gaming benchmark results are measured in FPS.

R9 290X satisfies 97% minimum and 87% recommended requirements of all games known to us.

Minimum
97%
Recommended
87%
Minimum
97%
Recommended
87%

HD 7970M Crossfire satisfies 97% minimum and 86% recommended requirements of all games known to us.

Minimum
97%
Recommended
86%
Minimum
97%
Recommended
86%

Here are the average frames per second in a large set of popular games across different resolutions:

 
R9 290X
HD 7970M Crossfire
900p
 
no data
132
1080p
 
87 −17.2%
102 +17.2%
4K
 
49
no data

Competitors of Radeon R9 290X from NVIDIA

The nearest Radeon R9 290X's NVIDIA equivalent is GeForce GTX 1650 Ti, which is faster by 1% and higher by 1 position in our rating.

Here are some closest NVIDIA rivals to Radeon R9 290X:

Competitors of Radeon HD 7970M Crossfire from NVIDIA

The nearest Radeon HD 7970M Crossfire's NVIDIA equivalent is GeForce GTX 680M SLI, which is faster by 2% and higher by 4 positions in our rating.

Here are some closest NVIDIA rivals to Radeon HD 7970M Crossfire:

Advantages of AMD Radeon R9 290X

9.8% higher performance in benchmarks

Much newer (24 October 2013 vs 1 May 2012)

Wider memory bus (512 vs 256 bit)

More pipelines (2816 vs 2560)

Mantle (an API developed by AMD for 3D graphics acceleration. Discontinued and later superceded by Vulkan)

Advantages of AMD Radeon HD 7970M Crossfire

Cheaper ($126 vs $469)

Lower power consumption (200W vs 290W), meaning that the rival with higher TDP might require a better cooler or other thermal solution.

So, which one is the better GPU?

Technical City couldn't decide between AMD Radeon R9 290X and AMD Radeon HD 7970M Crossfire. The differences in performance seem too small.

Be aware that Radeon R9 290X is a desktop card while Radeon HD 7970M Crossfire is a notebook one.

Should you still have questions concerning choice between the reviewed GPUs, ask them in Comments section, and we shall answer.

Cast your vote

Do you think we are right or mistaken in our choice? Vote by clicking "Like" button near your favorite graphics card.

AMD Radeon R9 290X
AMD Radeon HD 7970M Crossfire
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