Which brand of Radeon HD7850 to buy?

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Which brand of Radeon HD7850 to buy?

Postposted on Sun Jul 29, 2012 10:56 pm

Hi all,

Thinking of upgrading to an HD7850, and I'm rather baffled as to which one to choose. Is there any significant difference between the different manufacturers? They mostly seem to be in the same price range, so that just leaves performance etc.

Any good/bad reviews on specific ones? My current card is a Gigabyte... haven't had it long, but it generally seems to work fine. XFX was the first one I looked at based on a sample build recommendation, but I've also heard that Sapphire, ASUS, MSI, and Powercolor are good, depending on where I've been reading.

Planning on having this card last for a while, so any insight would be appreciated :)

Ty muchly!
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Re: Which brand of Radeon HD7850 to buy?

Postposted on Sun Jul 29, 2012 11:19 pm

I hear the Sapphire card can be overclocked like a monster thanks to the dual fans and the airflow design.
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Re: Which brand of Radeon HD7850 to buy?

Postposted on Sun Jul 29, 2012 11:43 pm

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.a ... 6814150609

I have the 7770 version of this card, it is truly a work of art. The Double D cooling system is quite, designed to last, and powerful (when turned up for overclocking). Though these cards tend to have a price premium, their build quality justifies it!

I haven't had Sapphire experience, but I can also recommend Asus cards.
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Re: Which brand of Radeon HD7850 to buy?

Postposted on Mon Jul 30, 2012 12:57 am

I've been quite happy with XFX and VisionTek for ATI cards, and EVGA for nVidia cards. No problems across multiple cards and GPU generations. I do tend to stay a step or two behind the bleeding edge though, so YMMV.
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Re: Which brand of Radeon HD7850 to buy?

Postposted on Mon Jul 30, 2012 6:26 am

Almost all of the 7850's are reference designs so the only real differences are the warranty length and cooler.

My experience with XFX has been one of good build quality, annoying "must register" for more than 1 year of warranty and excellent cooling, though in two cases the XFX coolers I've had have been tuned for performance at the expense of quietness.

Sapphires seem decent, I am a big fan of their vapor-x coolers, since they're usually vapor-chamber + heatpipe + dual-fan. I've never heard a noisy one, but they're more expensive.

Another good cooler I've come accross is Asus' Direct CuII coolers, though I hear that they now make a heatpipeless version that's noisier, so you probably want to check reviews of the specific model before plonking your money down.
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Re: Which brand of Radeon HD7850 to buy?

Postposted on Mon Jul 30, 2012 8:43 am

Don't forget HIS they too have been a long time ati/amd partner along with sapphire. The HIS IceqX TurboX comes with a factory 1ghz overclock compared to the factory 860 MHz I believe.
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Re: Which brand of Radeon HD7850 to buy?

Postposted on Mon Jul 30, 2012 8:51 am

I just got the MSI TwinFrozr 7850, and the cooler on it is great... keeps temps very low, while at the same time being amazingly quiet, even under load.
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Re: Which brand of Radeon HD7850 to buy?

Postposted on Mon Jul 30, 2012 9:06 am

BTW, welcome to TR!

And as people have already said, warranties are probably one of the most important differences. Even if you get slightly better performance, the peace of mind of a long warranty versus a shorter one should outweigh that. Aside from warranty, I would look at ports. The XFX card linked for the Sweet Spot build has some good offerings.

Last thing to look for is overclocking, IF you're into that sort of thing.

EDIT: Doh! Memory. The Sweet Spot links a 1GB version, but the one BloodSoul linked is 2GB from the same manufacturer. More RAM = more eye candy. I'm unfamiliar with how much this affects the 7850's performance, but it would be a major distinction.
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Re: Which brand of Radeon HD7850 to buy?

Postposted on Mon Jul 30, 2012 10:07 am

Thanks for the input guys :)

@Super, I'll be going with the 2GB version, as there seems to be very little price difference between the two, and it seems silly not to spend an extra $20-30 for double the memory :)

Anyone ever had any bad experience with MSI? NCIX has a $40 M.I.R. on that one right now, along with being the weekly special... seems hard to argue with a $66 discount, unless there's a good reason to.

Although with that being said, there's some sketchy wording on the rebate... it says to send in the Original UPC (fine, that I'm ok with) and the "serial number barcode label". I checked the rebate for the XFX card that's also going on, and it say nothing about sending in the serial number label. Wouldn't removing that label void my warranty? I was actually all set to order the MSI card until I noticed that... now I'm feeling a little leery.

EDIT: I've just been reassured by someone that there'd be a serial number label on the box itself as well, which is what I'd be sending in. Phew ;)
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Re: Which brand of Radeon HD7850 to buy?

Postposted on Mon Jul 30, 2012 10:22 am

I can check the box on mine when I get home... I still haven't sent in my rebate.
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Re: Which brand of Radeon HD7850 to buy?

Postposted on Mon Jul 30, 2012 12:07 pm

MSI - really slow RMA turnaround.

I'm sure I'm not the only one to experience this, but if high-end GPU has an 18-month useful lifespan (before it's due an upgrade) then being without it for two months seems a little excessive.
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Re: Which brand of Radeon HD7850 to buy?

Postposted on Tue Jul 31, 2012 12:27 pm

Clownfishie wrote:EDIT: I've just been reassured by someone that there'd be a serial number label on the box itself as well, which is what I'd be sending in. Phew ;)

I just sent in my rebate. Yes, there is a label on the box with both a serial number and UPC. There didn't seem to be a way to peel off the label without destroying it in the process, so I just cut it out of the box and taped it to the rebate form (which I got by going to the rebate website and filling in my info). I stapled the invoice from Newegg to the form, and mailed it off. It says to expect a response in 8-10 weeks, or you can have them deduct $3 to "rush" it.

The MSI 7850 has a 3 year warranty, which hopefully I won't need. The MSI 6600GT AGP card I got back in the day still works all these years later. The only card I've ever had to RMA in 16 years of DIY builds was an Asus Ti4200 card, and I think it took about a month to get it back (though in most cases, it would probably be at least a week quicker if you live on the west coast instead of the east coast like me).
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Re: Which brand of Radeon HD7850 to buy?

Postposted on Tue Jul 31, 2012 1:27 pm

If you live in the US, which I assume you do, you won't be disappointed with the XFX. I've had great experiences with their support, and honestly I don't see what the big deal with registering the card is, it takes all of 1 minute.
And yeah, the UPC and S/N label are right next to each other on the box.
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Re: Which brand of Radeon HD7850 to buy?

Postposted on Tue Jul 31, 2012 1:45 pm

The last card I had was a HD5850 from XFX. RMA'd once and the whole process from the first email to getting the card back took right at 4 weeks. Maybe some others have had better luck, some worse luck, I don't know. The card was nice though. Everyone i dealt with from XFX was nice enough. It obviously wasn't the speediest operation, but the result was something I couldn't complain about. I now own a MSI TwinFrozr HD7850. Definitely quieter than my old 5850. Haven't dealt with MSI at all yet. Hope not to really. I can say the card is nice though. Very quiet and cool.
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