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XFX R7770 Core Edition review

Andrew Unsworth
24 Aug 2013
Our Rating 
Price when reviewed 
90
inc VAT

A cheap graphics card with a great range of connections and performance

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Specifications

The XFX R7770 Core Edition is a cheap and compact graphics card that uses AMD’s Radeon HD 7770 chipset to provide much better graphics performance than your processor’s built-in graphics processor. It also has 1GB of GDDR5 memory, which isn’t much but will suffice for basic games and creative software such as Adobe Photoshop. The memory runs at a clock speed of 1.125GHz, while the graphics processor runs at 1GHz.

It’s also a fantastic way of adding a wider variety of ports to your PC that it might not already have. Indeed, the XFX R7770 Core Edition has two DVI outputs, a HDMI output and a DisplayPort output, despite costing less than £100. No matter what monitor you have, this card will have a compatible output. It’s also compatible with HDCP, so you’ll be able to output HDCP-protected Blu-rays to a compatible monitor.

XFX R7770 Core Edition

The XFX R7770 Core Edition isn’t very long, which means it should fit in all but the smallest cases, but it does occupy two slots on your PC’s backplane. Plus, you’ll need a free PCI-E connector to power it.

AMBITIOUS GAMING
We initially tested the card with Dirt Showdown, and ran our benchmark test at a resolution of 1,920x1,080 with graphics quality set to Ultra and anti-aliasing to 4x. The card produced an average frame rate of 40fps, which is more than smooth enough for comfortable play. When we reduced the resolution to 1,280x720 and the graphics settings to High, the card produced an excellent average frame rate of 97fps.

Sadly, it didn’t perform as well in our Crysis 2 benchmark test, with the XFX R7770 Core Edition producing an average frame rate of just 19.6fps at a resolution of 1,920x1,080 with graphics options set to Ultra and 4x anti-aliasing. This frame rate isn’t much higher than the test’s pass mark of 15fps, and is not smooth enough for enjoyable play. We had to reduce graphics options to High in order to get a playable frame rate of 42fps, although Very High wasn’t too bad at 29.4fps.

Again, reducing the resolution to 1,280x720 resulted in better average frame rates, with the XFX R7770 Core Edition producing a fairly smooth 28.3fps with graphics options set to Ultra and a very smooth 44.93fps with graphics settings slightly reduced to Extreme.

XFX R7770 Core Edition

While these aren’t the fastest scores, they’re not at all bad for a sub-£100 graphics card. The Sapphire Radeon HD 7790 Dual-X, which predictably uses the more powerful HD 7790 graphics processor, produced an average frame rate of 24.6fps in Crysis 2 at a resolution of 1,920x1,080 with graphics settings set to Ultra. This frame rate is only around five frames per second faster than that produced by the XFX R7770 Core Edition, but you only have to reduce graphics settings to Extreme to enjoy Crysis 2 at a smooth 36.6fps at Full HD resolution.

The Sapphire Radeon HD 7790 also stormed through our Dirt Showdown benchmark test, producing an excellent 55.3fps at a resolution of 1,920x1,080 with 4x anti-aliasing and graphics quality set to Ultra. At a resolution of 1,280x720 and with graphics quality set to High, the same card produced an average frame rate of 106fps.

AS can be seen from these comparisons, the Radeon HD 7790 doesn’t have a massive lead on the Radeon HD 7770, but it’s enough to make a difference when playing the latest games.

MULTI-MONITOR FUN
As the XFX R7770 Core Edition has such a wide variety of outputs it’s worth making use of them if you’re lucky to have three spare monitors for gaming or productivity software. With three monitors configured to run in AMD’s Eyefinity multi-monitor mode, we ran Dirt Showdown at a very wide resolution of 5,760x1,080 with graphics quality set to Ultra and 4x anti-aliasing. Surprisingly, the card just passed our benchmark test with a score of 16.5fps. This is nowhere near smooth enough for enjoyable play, but reducing graphics quality to High produced a much better average frame rate of 31.4fps.

XFX R7770 Core Edition

Sadly, the card didn’t pass any of our benchmark tests in Crysis 2 at the same resolution. However, the Sapphire Radeon HD 7790 Dual-X also found this test challenging and only just scraped a pass with a frame rate of 18.fps when graphics options were set to Very High.

We like the XFX R7770 Core Edition. It’s a neat, quiet and compact card that would suit users who want to upgrade from their CPU’s built-in graphics processor in order to enjoy the latest games. You’ll have to compromise on graphics quality and resolution to if you want to play graphically demanding games, and we think you should pay a little more for a Radeon HD 7790-based graphics card if you’re primarily a gamer, but otherwise the XFX R7770 Core Edition is a great budget card.

Basic Specifications

Price£90
Rating****
Detailswww.xfxforce.com
InterfacePCI Express x16 3.0
Crossfire/SLICrossFire
Slots taken up2
BrandAMD
Graphics ProcessorAMD Radeon HD 7770
Memory1,024MB GDDR5
Memory interface128-bit
GPU clock speed1.00GHz
Memory speed1.13GHz

Features

Architecture640
Anti aliasing24x
Anisotropic filtering16x

Connectors

DVI outputs2
VGA outputs0
S-video outputno
S-Video inputno
Composite outputsno
Composite inputsno
Component outputsno
HDMI outputs1
Power leads required1x 6-pin PCI Express

Extras

Accessoriesnone
Software includednone

Buying Information

Warrantyone year RTB
Price£90
Supplierhttp://www.scan.co.uk
Detailswww.xfxforce.com

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