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Gaming Performance Comparison

Recommended System Requirements
Game Radeon R9 280 Radeon HD 7950 Gigabyte WindForce Edition
Grand Theft Auto V 20% 19%
Battlefield: Hardline 6% 5%
The Witcher III 22% 23%
Pillars of Eternity 43% 42%
Assassins Creed: Rogue 39% 39%
Dying Light 43% 44%
Cities: Skylines 20% 19%
Batman: Arkham Knight 43% 42%
Mortal Kombat X 20% 19%
Star Citizen 81% 83%

In terms of overall gaming performance, the graphical capabilities of the AMD Radeon R9 280 are marginally better than the AMD Radeon HD 7950 Gigabyte WindForce Edition.

The HD 7950 has a 33 MHz higher core clock speed and the same number of Texture Mapping Units as the Radeon R9 280. This results in the HD 7950 providing 3.7 GTexel/s better texturing performance. This still holds weight but shader performance is generally more relevant, particularly since both of these GPUs support at least DirectX 10.

The HD 7950 has a 33 MHz higher core clock speed than the Radeon R9 280 and the same number of Render Output Units. This results in the HD 7950 providing 1 GPixel/s better pixeling performance. However, both GPUs support DirectX 9 or above, and pixeling performance is only really relevant when comparing older cards.

The Radeon R9 280 was released over a year more recently than the HD 7950, and so the Radeon R9 280 is likely to have better driver support, meaning it will be more optimized for running the latest games.

Both GPUs exhibit very powerful performance, so it probably isn't worth upgrading from one to the other, as both are capable of running even the most demanding games at the highest settings.

The Radeon R9 280 and the Radeon HD 7950 Gigabyte WindForce Edition have the same amount of video memory, but are likely to provide slightly different experiences when displaying game textures at high resolutions.

The memory bandwidth of the Radeon R9 280 and the Radeon HD 7950 Gigabyte WindForce Edition are the same, which means the Radeon R9 280 and the HD 7950 have equal limitations when it comes to graphical data transfer.

Both the Radeon R9 280 and the Radeon HD 7950 Gigabyte WindForce Edition have 1792 Shader Processing Units. While the two GPUs have the same number of SPUs, the actual performance delivered by the . Knowing that the shader performance of the Radeon R9 280 is superior, it is not necessary to examine the GPUs' respective Texture and Pixel Fill Rates.

The Radeon R9 280 requires 200 Watts to run but there is no entry for the Radeon HD 7950 Gigabyte WindForce Edition. We would recommend a PSU with at least 500 Watts for the Radeon R9 280.

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GPU Core Details

Core Speed827 MHzvs860 MHz
ArchitectureGCN 1.1 Tahiti PRO2GCN 1.0 Tahiti PRO
Notebook GPUnono
Release Date04 Mar 201401 Jun 2012
GPU LinkGD LinkGD Link

Resolution Performance

1366x768 - green tick vs green tick -
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GPU Memory

Memory3072 MBvs3072 MB
Memory Speed1250 MHzvs1250 MHz
Memory Bus384 Bitvs384 Bit
Memory TypeGDDR5vsGDDR5
Memory Bandwidth240GB/secvs240GB/sec
L2 Cache 768 KB green tick vs green tick 768 KB

GPU Display

Shader Processing Units1792vs1792
Actual Shader Performance1421vs1310
Texture Mapping Units112vs112
Texture Rate92.6 GTexel/svs96.3 GTexel/s
Render Output Units32vs32
Pixel Rate26.5 GPixel/svs27.5 GPixel/s

GPU Display Tech

Shader Model5.0vs5.0
Open GL4.3vs4.2
Max Resolution (WxH)4096x2160vs4096x2160
VGA Connections0vs0
DVI Connections2vs1
HDMI Connections1vs1

GPU Power Requirements

Max Power200 Watts-

GPU Supporting Hardware

Recommended RAM8 GBvs8 GB
Recommended Screen Size1920x10801920x1080
Recommended PSU500 Watts-

Gaming Performance Value

Performance Value

GPU Mini Review

Mini ReviewRadeon R9 280 is a high-end graphics card based on the second revision of the Graphics Core Next architecture.
It packs a Tahiti PRO2 Core and features 1792 Shader Processing Units, 112 TMUs and 32 ROPs, on a 384-bit memory interface. While the central unit runs at 827MHz and goes up to 933MHz, in Turbo Mode, the memory clock operates at 1250MHz.
The Tahiti PRO2 is a revision of the Tahiti PRO seen on Radeon HD 7950 and that was first used on Radeon HD 7950 Boost Edition.
Radeon R9 280 is slightly higher clocked than its predecessor but expect exactly the same performance and rated board TDP. Thus, the card is suited for 1080p gaming but will have trouble at higher resolutions with some modern demanding games and GeForce GTX 760 is still faster.
Radeon HD 7950 Gigabyte WindForce Edition is a special edition of the Radeon HD 7950. See the standard's version page to know more about it.
The new features include a core-clock raise from 800MHz to 860MHz. A new cooling system which features a "Triangle Cool" Technology and an Ultra Durable VGA board.
The performance boost is around 4% when compared to standard Radeon HD 7950.
Recommended CPUIntel Core i3-4350 3.6GHz
Intel Core i3-4340 3.6GHz
Intel Core i5-750S 2.4GHz
Intel Core i5-750 2.66GHz
AMD Phenom II X4 B65
Intel Core i7-4785T 4-Core 2.2GHz
Intel Xeon E5-2407 v2
Intel Core i5-4570 3.2GHz
Intel Core i5-4670S 3.1GHz
Intel Core i5-3570 3.4GHz
Possible GPU Upgrades-GeForce GTX 770 Galaxy GC 2GB Edition
Radeon R9 280X Sapphire Toxic 3GB OC Edition
Radeon R9 280X XFX Double D Black Edition
Radeon R9 280X Matrix Platinum 3GB Edition
Radeon R9 280X DirectCU II TOP 3GB Edition
GPU VariantsRadeon R9 280 Sapphire Dual-X OC 3GB Edition