PowerColor has bucked the trend of other AMD board partners and blazed a new trail here, deftly sandwiching two Tahiti cores onto one PCB, and creating a card that essentially doesn’t exist within AMD’s 7000 series lineup. No doubt about it, we love the innovation shown here by PowerColor.
The design and engineering features don’t stop there. The Devil 13 HD 7990 contains just about everything you would want in an enthusiast-oriented card, including the improved 12+2+2 power design, LED indicators, and voltage reading points. There’s also the dual BIOS that essentially gives the card a turbo boost with the push of a button. The accessory package is also outstanding, and arguably overkill, but PowerColor is to be commended on the attention to detail. Sleek styling is the icing on the cake, and this card has it all.
The performance results are on par with what we’d expect from what is essentially a 7970 Crossfire setup, though just slightly less than double the performance on average, as the PLX chip will cause some latency to account for the minimal difference. Against the GTX 690, the Devil 13 7990 trades blows, depending on the game engine. For the most part, it’s very close, except a couple games where the PowerColor cards blows away the Nvidia competition at the triple-screen resolution.
So what’s the downside here? Well, the steep price of nearly $1000 is the biggest stumbling point. However, if you’re looking to spend that type of cash on a limited edition graphics card, then budget isn’t your primary concern, and for those that want the best then a stiff price tag is the cost of having bleeding edge technology, not to mention arguably the baddest ass card on the planet. At this extreme echelon, value simply isn’t in the equation, though you could buy two separate 1GHz 7970 cards for about a hundred bucks less. That doesn’t account for the killer accessory package though, so in that sense, you are getting what you pay for with this PowerColor package.
The PowerColor Devil 13 HD 7990 isn’t simply a graphics card; it’s an experience. You’re buying a story, a work of art, a conversation piece. No different than an absurdly expensive and entirely unnecessary exotic sports car, the Devil 13 is a symbol of advanced technology, passion, and expensive tastes. It’s certainly not for the mere mortals, but if you have the budget to get one of these, then we salute you in knowing you’re getting one of the very best cards out there.
PowerColor Devil 13 HD 7990