Overall and FV
Sapphire went back to the drawing board after the launch of the HD 7770 and came back with the card we just took a look at, the HD 7770 Vapor-X. They managed to improve both the noise and cooling performance over their original design that we covered previously but we were a little surprised they didn’t go a little more extreme with the overclock considering the cards improved cooling. The upgraded cooling had the side benefit of near silent operation. This is also one of the best looking cards we have seen from Sapphire; the design is unique but still very simple.
On top of all of that this finally gave us the chance to stop and rethink our original recommendations with the HD 7770. Before it was priced in a way that it wasn’t competing with cards priced similar, even from AMD themselves. Today we can say that the price has dropped. But with Nvidia recently introducing new cards how will that affect things? A quick look at online retailers and we actually see Nvidia’s 550 Ti and the HD 6850 priced right along with the HD 7770. This is assuming the card sells for MSRP; any sort of discount would put it ahead of both in almost every case. Having said that jumping back to performances we saw the DH 7770 Vapor-X out performing both cards as well. Finally the HD 7770 has reached the price point it needed to be at launch. Until we start to see mid-range Kepler cards from Nvidia, AMD can finally take a breath with the HD7770 inching out ahead as the better buy right now.