PowerColor Devil13 HD7990 Review
Published: 30th September 2012 | Source: PowerColor | Price: £799 |
To say the PowerColor Devil13 is a pleasant surprise is an enormous understatement.
So often the 'two GPUs on a single PCB' cards are great performers, albeit problematic in areas. The GTX690 SLI took us ages to get working properly, the GTX590 is really two GTX570s rather than GTX580s, and the HD6990 was let down by the underlying quality of the Cayman XT GPUs. The only cards that have really made the most of the possibilities on offer is the ASUS Mars II, and that was rarer than hens teeth and equally expensive.
The PowerColor Devil13 is expensive. Let's not beat around the bush. It's amazingly expensive. But, and this is the thing that we can't help be constantly surprised about, it actually is good value. Or perhaps it's better to say that if we had spent the money on the card we wouldn't be disappointed. You're paying a large chunk of change, but getting a large chunk in return. The packaging is outstanding. From the wax seal to the high quality of the included accessories, everything about opening it up is an event. We all know that you want to enjoy the moment for as long as possible when you get a fresh new piece of hardware but more often than not the packaging is merely a delay before getting your hands on it. Not so with the Devil13.
Of course we'd be kidding ourselves if we weren't aware of the real reason you'd splash £800 on a GPU, and the Devil13 doesn't disappoint in that regard either. Barring a couple of titles it was the fastest, highest scoring, card we've ever tested. The only setup that regularly beat it was the GTX690 SLI arrangement and that's twice the price and GPUs. So in real-terms if you buy the Devil13 you'll not only have the ultimate thing to put in your forum signature but the results will back it up too. Probably most amazing is the fact that, with a combination of the way games are coded and planned, most of the titles in our review suite aren't even taking full advantage of the card. More often than not it's only 50 or 60% utilised.
If you're the type of person who skips to our conclusion then we have to repeat that here at OC3D we always test the version that you will buy in the shops, and PowerColor have fixed the heatsink pressure problems that were on their early prototypes.
Normally a product such as this receives our Performance Award. We don't live in a vacuum and understand that value for money and price have to be taken into consideration. But the Devil13 is so impressive, so comprehensive in its "top of the world" performance, that to give it anything other than a Gold Award would be doing it a disservice. It's awesome, and that's not something we often find ourselves saying. The best GPU on the planet.