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XFX 7970Ghz Edition Double D throttling problem. Faulty card or PSU related? - Page 3

post #21 of 53
Warning: Spoiler! (Click to show)
Quote:
Originally Posted by SoloSolider View Post

I also have a XFX DD Ghz edition card displaying these problems. I have been going back and forth with the XFX rep for about 2 months now, they are about to suggest and RMA in the coming weeks they have said. I have actually found a work around to stop the card from doing this. It involves MSI AB and a modded set of drivers.

I have a newer version of the XFX 7970 DD Ghz Edition with a locked voltage regulator. So the images of my overclock you will see are the best I could get and remain stable. Different internet reviewers out there got further so I guess I didn't do great in the silicon lottery.

Here are two images I included. One was just sitting on the desktop, the card was freaking out. Working fine but osculating like a bizzach. The other is of during a 3D game, not super intensive but I should only be running 3D stock clocks the whole time. Too boot every-time it switches speeds while I'm in game I notice a quick shudder in the game as well.




Now to my work around.

Go to this site here: http://benchmark3d.com/amd-catalytst-13-2-beta-7-7900-mod

Download the 13.2 Beta 7 Modded Driver *******ULPS OFF******

Install that driver.

Now install MSI AB and set it up for overclocking with option 2 for power saving options off. Quick internet search will get you rolling on how to set that up.

Then in order to stable the clock and them not change you have to do at least a 1 Mhz over clock on your core and memory. I suggest a 5Mhz it's a more incremental number in OCing.

Save the profile.

Apply the profile.

Once you have applied the profile you and adjust it back to stock clocks if you wish they will now stick.

NOTE: These cards get stupid hot running FarCry 3 and Crysis 3 so I created a very heavy fan profile.

NOTE: I suggest you give it the +20 power setting when doing this. There is no reason to shortchange the card power and stress the components.

NOTE: Once you up clock your card you will be running 3D clock voltage until your restart your computer, that means more heat at idle. Also verified that doing this does not void the warranty since it's specified clocks per XFX support.

NOTE: IMPORTANT: I do not know if the card will throttle itself because of heat. Even with my current fan profile playing very high end games with V-Sync off the card can hover at 73 degrees C. Unwilling to test this theory you will see my fan profile reaches 85% at 70 degrees C which is quite loud.

I included two picks showing my results.



In this last pic you'll see I created a down clocked profile for surfing the web and such. It still uses 3D voltages but I reduced the power consumption and clock speeds to remove unneeded heat adders.


You have just described the exact steps I just took to fix this very problem (minus the modded BIOS/Driver, I did not find it to be required since AB v.3 beta has the ULPS disable switch integrated).
I have two XFX 7970 DoubleD (non-boost) cards in crossfire as well. One came from the factory with 1000Mhz/1425Mhz clocks while the other was stock clocks (925/1375). I run both at 1000/1425 in games and have a "2D clocks" preset for desktop use.

And yes, I think it's somewhat absurd that I have to manually manage clock and power settings for AMD's flagship, current-gen graphics cards in xfire.
post #22 of 53
Just signed up on this forum to say....

Yes, the XFX DD cooler is the worst piece of garbage I have ever seen on a graphics card. I have the exact same problems as the OP mentioned. The card overheats just playing a simple game and the temperature sensors aren't available to view from software!?

With the fans set on 100% and the side panel of my computer off, it still overheats. Seriously, how is it possible to release a POS heat sink is beyond belief. The R&D department must be retarded.

Not only that, XFX puts those crappy security stickers everywhere, no wonder, they have such a crappy heatsink, end users HAVE to replace it with anything else, just so it works.

If I bought it retail price, I would have sent it back as faulty because it CLEARLY has a design flaw. Thankfully I only got it for £100, so I can justify spending £110 on an Arctic Accelero Hybrid cooler. Hopefully that will fix the issues. I will report back shortly!

If anyone wants pics on how to disassemble, let me know before I replace the HS!
Edited by BiGK - 3/19/13 at 6:14pm
post #23 of 53
Quote:
Originally Posted by BiGK View Post

Just signed up on this forum to say....

Yes, the XFX DD cooler is the worst piece of garbage I have ever seen on a graphics card. I have the exact same problems as the OP mentioned. The card overheats just playing a simple game and the temperature sensors aren't available to view from software!?

With the fans set on 100% and the side panel of my computer off, it still overheats. Seriously, how is it possible to release a POS heat sink is beyond belief. The R&D department must be retarded.

Not only that, XFX puts those crappy security stickers everywhere, no wonder, they have such a crappy heatsink, end users HAVE to replace it with anything else, just so it works.

If I bought it retail price, I would have sent it back as faulty because it CLEARLY has a design flaw. Thankfully I only got it for £100, so I can justify spending £110 on an Arctic Accelero Hybrid cooler. Hopefully that will fix the issues. I will report back shortly!

If anyone wants pics on how to disassemble, let me know before I replace the HS!

I have a theory that the XFX DD cooler is made out of left over engines parts from a TU-95 bear why well both seems to be loud and made by someone drunk

Or by the same people who made this http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/XF-84H_Thunderscreech
Edited by shilka - 3/19/13 at 6:23pm
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post #24 of 53
Thread Starter 
Well, the thing about this is that I am not even sure about the card overheating being the issue at hand. Sometimes it does it 30 seconds into a game, other times after 10 minutes or more. It's always fixed if I go and change the clocks and apply them (at least it fixes it for a while) if it was an overheating problem, I doubt that changing clocks would magically make the parts of the card cool down enough to hold the clocks for god knows how long (could be 10 seconds or 10 minutes). Same things goes for powertune, with powertune at 20% the likelihood of throttling occurred is GREATLY reduced, if it was indeed an overheating issue, the powertune setting would have no influence on the card behavior right?

I've made two small videos that I will use to show XFX what's exactly my issue is. Since other people are posting in this thread with the same issues as mine, I'll post them there so they might be useful if any of the people in this thread decides to RMA the card and wants to show XFX some visual proof. I've had a talk with my retailer (I am europe based so my RMA goes through them who ships the gpu to the distributor who tests it and then if it doesn't pass, it ships it to the manufacturer who will then test it again). Sadly, my retailer told me that due to the trick nature of the issue (card not displaying artifacts/not crashing) there's a very high chance card will be returned as working, and my best bet would be to have a "direct" RMA with XFX, getting clearance from them to send my card directly to them.

Here's the videos:

On this one the clocks start out as planned, then they start to throttling, the throttling is not as worse as it is (interestingly, if there's some program who keeps busy the CPU thus avoiding the videocard GPU usage to go at 99% the throttling takes longer to occurs) but you can see the GPU usage % shifting from 100% to 64% almost continuously. It got lost in the video conversion, but each time a gpu usage spike or clock shift occurs, there's a microsecond 'freeze".

Here you can see that albeit the GPU usage is more constant (just a couple spikes) the clocks throttle wildly all over the place. Same as above, this is somehow influenced and ultimately it boils down to how GPU intensive the game is. If it's a game that uses the GPU just at 70,80 or 90% the card will sit happily at 1050mhz for hours.

@SoloSolider:
What version of the DD cooler do you have, the original one (you can recognize it, because on the red bar it will read XFX R7970 SERIES) or the revised one? (it will just read XFX R7900 SERIES)
Edited by -red- - 3/21/13 at 1:13pm
post #25 of 53
Quote:
Originally Posted by -red- View Post

@SoloSolider:
What version of the DD cooler do you have, the original one (you can recognize it, because on the red bar it will read XFX R7970 SERIES) or the revised one? (it will just read XFX R7900 SERIES)

I believe it's the revised cooler since I purchased the card a little over A month ago. I'm at work and can't check but I'll post for sure when I get home. As long as you follow my steps the card should never revert clocks once applied. Like I said though it probally won't throttle due to heat anymore.

I have the SAME problem when the GPU is under ultlized it starts occalating almost instantly and if it's under heavy load it can stay pretty solid for most of the time. It wouldn't bother me if it didn't cause my games to shudder like you explained.

I'm working with XFX on RMA now but I'm trying to make it clear to them whats wrong because it seems as if they don't kno what I'm talking about at all and I don't want to spend 40 dollars shipping a card to have it shipped back and called good because they don't know what to look for.

It's deffinattly not your PSU causing the problem I have a 1200 watt PSU and have the problem as well. With the powertune option more power increases stability and heat as well.

Here is the pic of my card from another thread:


Edited by SoloSolider - 3/21/13 at 4:08pm
post #26 of 53
Greetings, I've just registered on OCN mainly due to this rather interesting XFX topics.
I also bought two XFX 7970 GHz DD Edition Cards, mostly because I got a decent price for them and general 7970 GHz Edition availability was rather lackluster around here - I guess AMDs Never Settle Reloaded program paid off. In any case, temps on my cards have been ok while using just one of them. However I can't really tell whether I suffer from the same stuttering problem or not. I keep an eye onto GPU-Z which is running in the background and I only had one game which caused the GPU to clock down, however not too much... it throttled down to 9xx MHz for a second or two before going back up to either 1000 MHz or 1050 MHz. That only happens after a longer gaming session.

To make a long story short:
My Crossfire rig is having heavy temperature problems and just today, while looking how temps behave without side panel of my case, I noticed my PSU was hot as hell. Checked the fan and it was dead. Wanted to order a new PSU anyways, since my Corsair HX1000W is more than five years old now. Due to the crippled PSU I don't want to do any further testing until my new AX860 arrives.

I'd like to know what kind of stuff XFX actually "revised" on the DD cooler. Both of my cards had different packaging, one had a black inbox with printed white XFX logos, the other one had a recycled paper cardbox with stamped logos. However the cards have the same BIOS and the cooler also reads the said newer "XFX R7900 Series" text. Now I took a much closer look at the cooler itself and I am baffled a bit.
I am sure no pro when it comes to cooling, but there seems to be a major design flaw: Unlike other custom coolers, which feature open aluminium fins, the DD cooler has closed fins. This means no air should even reach any PCB parts at all, because it is blocked by that fin closings. Also that black cooling plate placed onto the PCB appears to have little to none direct contact to the big cooling unit itself. If you touch your card(s) during a stressfull gaming session, you'll notice how hot the black frame gets.
Since the shroud of the DD is rather closed, even passive airflow (case fans etc.) has a hard time to cool the PCB components. I mean just look at that rounded, closed off rear - even if you (like me) put a fan near the rear of the card, the airflow won't reach the actual cooler or that PCB plate.
Back to that "revised" cooler. I did some research and tried to compare the original "XFX R7970 Series" design with the newer "XFX R7900 Series" but I just couldn't find any changed appart the lettering. The fins are still closed. The cooling plate still has virtually no ventilation openings and connections to the actual cooler are not really existent.

While I don't want to conclude the XFX 7970 DD is doomed in general, there are sure some serious quirks about this card. Too bad I didn't know about this earlier, my 14-day cash-back warrenty just ended yesterday for one of the cards. A shame really, I read a couple of reviews prior buying and most of them where positive or ok - not a single one mentioned this card being bad. I also like the general looks and finish of the cooler - a great thing this all aluminium shroud compared to those cheap, strange formed plastic shrouds other companies use. However those looks don't help with the temperatures.mad.gif

I'll keep you folks updated once I can do some further testing.
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post #27 of 53
Quote:
Originally Posted by Taigatrommel View Post

Greetings, I've just registered on OCN mainly due to this rather interesting XFX topics.
I also bought two XFX 7970 GHz DD Edition Cards, mostly because I got a decent price for them and general 7970 GHz Edition availability was rather lackluster around here - I guess AMDs Never Settle Reloaded program paid off. In any case, temps on my cards have been ok while using just one of them. However I can't really tell whether I suffer from the same stuttering problem or not. I keep an eye onto GPU-Z which is running in the background and I only had one game which caused the GPU to clock down, however not too much... it throttled down to 9xx MHz for a second or two before going back up to either 1000 MHz or 1050 MHz. That only happens after a longer gaming session.

To make a long story short:
My Crossfire rig is having heavy temperature problems and just today, while looking how temps behave without side panel of my case, I noticed my PSU was hot as hell. Checked the fan and it was dead. Wanted to order a new PSU anyways, since my Corsair HX1000W is more than five years old now. Due to the crippled PSU I don't want to do any further testing until my new AX860 arrives.

I'd like to know what kind of stuff XFX actually "revised" on the DD cooler. Both of my cards had different packaging, one had a black inbox with printed white XFX logos, the other one had a recycled paper cardbox with stamped logos. However the cards have the same BIOS and the cooler also reads the said newer "XFX R7900 Series" text. Now I took a much closer look at the cooler itself and I am baffled a bit.
I am sure no pro when it comes to cooling, but there seems to be a major design flaw: Unlike other custom coolers, which feature open aluminium fins, the DD cooler has closed fins. This means no air should even reach any PCB parts at all, because it is blocked by that fin closings. Also that black cooling plate placed onto the PCB appears to have little to none direct contact to the big cooling unit itself. If you touch your card(s) during a stressfull gaming session, you'll notice how hot the black frame gets.
Since the shroud of the DD is rather closed, even passive airflow (case fans etc.) has a hard time to cool the PCB components. I mean just look at that rounded, closed off rear - even if you (like me) put a fan near the rear of the card, the airflow won't reach the actual cooler or that PCB plate.
Back to that "revised" cooler. I did some research and tried to compare the original "XFX R7970 Series" design with the newer "XFX R7900 Series" but I just couldn't find any changed appart the lettering. The fins are still closed. The cooling plate still has virtually no ventilation openings and connections to the actual cooler are not really existent.

While I don't want to conclude the XFX 7970 DD is doomed in general, there are sure some serious quirks about this card. Too bad I didn't know about this earlier, my 14-day cash-back warrenty just ended yesterday for one of the cards. A shame really, I read a couple of reviews prior buying and most of them where positive or ok - not a single one mentioned this card being bad. I also like the general looks and finish of the cooler - a great thing this all aluminium shroud compared to those cheap, strange formed plastic shrouds other companies use. However those looks don't help with the temperatures.mad.gif

I'll keep you folks updated once I can do some further testing.

Hi! Welcome to OCN, please be sure to fill out your rig and make it available for viewing. I'm interested in knowing what kind of case and airflow you have.
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post #28 of 53
Quote:
Originally Posted by Taigatrommel View Post

Greetings, I've just registered on OCN mainly due to this rather interesting XFX topics.
I also bought two XFX 7970 GHz DD Edition Cards, mostly because I got a decent price for them and general 7970 GHz Edition availability was rather lackluster around here - I guess AMDs Never Settle Reloaded program paid off. In any case, temps on my cards have been ok while using just one of them. However I can't really tell whether I suffer from the same stuttering problem or not. I keep an eye onto GPU-Z which is running in the background and I only had one game which caused the GPU to clock down, however not too much... it throttled down to 9xx MHz for a second or two before going back up to either 1000 MHz or 1050 MHz. That only happens after a longer gaming session.

To make a long story short:
My Crossfire rig is having heavy temperature problems and just today, while looking how temps behave without side panel of my case, I noticed my PSU was hot as hell. Checked the fan and it was dead. Wanted to order a new PSU anyways, since my Corsair HX1000W is more than five years old now. Due to the crippled PSU I don't want to do any further testing until my new AX860 arrives.

I'd like to know what kind of stuff XFX actually "revised" on the DD cooler. Both of my cards had different packaging, one had a black inbox with printed white XFX logos, the other one had a recycled paper cardbox with stamped logos. However the cards have the same BIOS and the cooler also reads the said newer "XFX R7900 Series" text. Now I took a much closer look at the cooler itself and I am baffled a bit.
I am sure no pro when it comes to cooling, but there seems to be a major design flaw: Unlike other custom coolers, which feature open aluminium fins, the DD cooler has closed fins. This means no air should even reach any PCB parts at all, because it is blocked by that fin closings. Also that black cooling plate placed onto the PCB appears to have little to none direct contact to the big cooling unit itself. If you touch your card(s) during a stressfull gaming session, you'll notice how hot the black frame gets.
Since the shroud of the DD is rather closed, even passive airflow (case fans etc.) has a hard time to cool the PCB components. I mean just look at that rounded, closed off rear - even if you (like me) put a fan near the rear of the card, the airflow won't reach the actual cooler or that PCB plate.
Back to that "revised" cooler. I did some research and tried to compare the original "XFX R7970 Series" design with the newer "XFX R7900 Series" but I just couldn't find any changed appart the lettering. The fins are still closed. The cooling plate still has virtually no ventilation openings and connections to the actual cooler are not really existent.

While I don't want to conclude the XFX 7970 DD is doomed in general, there are sure some serious quirks about this card. Too bad I didn't know about this earlier, my 14-day cash-back warrenty just ended yesterday for one of the cards. A shame really, I read a couple of reviews prior buying and most of them where positive or ok - not a single one mentioned this card being bad. I also like the general looks and finish of the cooler - a great thing this all aluminium shroud compared to those cheap, strange formed plastic shrouds other companies use. However those looks don't help with the temperatures.mad.gif

I'll keep you folks updated once I can do some further testing.

I believe from searching other threads and such the design change was to add heat syncs to the RAM moldules on the card so effectively its the same cooler just with a few extra heatsinks under the hood. They also locked down the voltage regulator so it can't be changed with out BIOS moddification which is risky. Also please move your post and info into a new thread as it really isn't on topic with the problems were experiencing and trying to find a solution too, thanks. I have given the link to this thread to XFX support staff in hopes that thier review of this thread will generate a better understanding of whats happening and hopefully come up with a solution.
Edited by SoloSolider - 3/21/13 at 4:30pm
post #29 of 53
Thread Starter 
Well, chances for the RMA seem to be rather slim, I got in touch with XFX support as well and showed them the videos I took. This was the answer I got:
"Looks like the card is working fine, but the clock speeds are adjusting to the need of the engine. Until there's an actual problem, there's not a lot we can do."
This was from the NA support, so anyone considering the RMA might want to take this into consideration before sending their card. Sounds like there's a high likelihood of being without a card for a couple weeks/month just to get the same old back.

I honestly do not believe much to that answer at all, and to me it just sounds like a cheap way to avoid a RMA, if the card was throttling down to adjust to engine needs, why that would stop when using workarounds? Not to mention, should this be a common behavior for 7970 there would be definitely more threads about this around the internet.

@SoloSolider

To me it's actually the opposite. If it's a game with a fairly low GPU Usage (say 80% low 90s) the card will sit at 1050 stable for as long as you want. But, when you run a game that pushes the GPU to 99%, the throttling starts. Feel free to show the XFX support the videos I took, hopefully that will give them a better understanding.
Edited by -red- - 3/22/13 at 2:21am
post #30 of 53
Quote:
Originally Posted by SoloSolider View Post

I believe from searching other threads and such the design change was to add heat syncs to the RAM moldules on the card so effectively its the same cooler just with a few extra heatsinks under the hood. They also locked down the voltage regulator so it can't be changed with out BIOS moddification which is risky. Also please move your post and info into a new thread as it really isn't on topic with the problems were experiencing and trying to find a solution too, thanks. I have given the link to this thread to XFX support staff in hopes that thier review of this thread will generate a better understanding of whats happening and hopefully come up with a solution.

I am not sure if it is completely off-topic. I am pretty sure there is a temperature problem going on here with the OPs case too. Two days ago my clockspeeds also were unconsistent after a longer Tomb Raider session. I checked GPU-Z (haven't logged though) and there have been some very small, yet noticable negative spikes in both GPU clock and voltage. The game also ran obviously choppier compared to when I fresh started playing. On the opposite I have a ~23 minutes log of Far Cry 3 (Crossfire enabled) yesterday which only shows two clock drops to 1000 MHz for a single second each as well as a drop to 501 MHz for a single second. That drop to 501 MHz also dropped the voltage to 2d numbers of 0.950v.
I think it would be interesting to find out wether there is (still) a problem with all of XFXs 7970 DD cards or if there is a specific fault with the setup -red- uses.

As for the cooling modifications: These would hardly make any use. As already said the primary cooling block of the DD version is pretty sealed of, no air can reach the PCB surface nor its components. So heat gets stuck in there, I am not sure what kind of use RAM heatsinks would have in such an environment. There still is a question about the VRM cooling situation, which I learned to be rather questionable. The VRM also seem to have some sort of heatsink (maybe integrated in that cooling plate on the PCB?), however what use is this passive heatsink if hardly any airflow touches it to remove the heat?


As for the answer XFX gave you, I call it BS. I have never heard about a 7970 or any other card, even GeForces, clock down during a game when GPU usage is low. Taking a look at the earlier mentioned FC3 log, I have situation where GPU usage sits well below 50% and none of the cards throttle down. Why should they? It doesn't make any sense. The only reason why this card ever should throttle down would be either 2d mode to save power or during games in 3d mode when a temperature problem appears to keep the card save. But not to save energy while playing...
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Sapsan
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