As you have learned from the previous section, the AMD Radeon HD 7970 GHz Edition is designed identically to the Radeon HD 7970. This also refers to its cooling system which consists of a heatsink with a copper vapor chamber, a copper sole, a fan, and a plastic casing.
We didn’t find any difference in the design of this cooler from the one installed on the reference HD 7970.
According to our monitoring tools, the speed of the fan is varied from 1050 to 5400 RPM. The fan’s maximum power draw is 20 watts.
We checked out the card’s temperature during five consecutive runs of Aliens vs. Predator (2010) game with the highest image quality settings in 2560x1440 resolution with 16x anisotropic filtering and MSAA 4x antialiasing):
We used MSI Afterburner 2.2.2 and GPU-Z 0.6.3 as monitoring tools. This test was performed inside a closed system case at 25°C room temperature. All thermal tests were carried out before we took the card apart, i.e. with its default thermal interface still intact.
Let’s see how the reference cooler copes with the high-frequency Radeon HD 7970 GHz Edition.
Auto fan mode
Maximum fan speed
Well, of course it copes, yet the GPU was almost 90°C hot when the fan was regulated automatically. The fan worked at 3200 RPM, which was very loud. At the maximum speed of 5400 RPM the card’s roar is hard to bear, but the temperature is reduced by 18°C at peak GPU load.