30-Aug-12 // Techpowerup Highly Recommended award on HD 7750 1GB Low Profile

Techpowerup, the computer hardware authority well known for it's professional reviews takes the Club 3D HD 7750 Low Profile graphic card for a test.

Here's what they have to say:

Techpowerup reviewClub 3D Radeon HD 7750 Low Profile

Club 3D Radeon HD 7750 Low Profile 1 GB

Club3D has just released the fastest single-slot low-profile graphics card, based on the HD 7750. This means that full HD gaming on your compact media PC might just be a possibility. In our review we will take a close look at gaming capabilities, but also look at power consumption and noise.

Club 3D's Radeon HD 7750 is one of the rare gaming-capable low-profile cards on the market today. It is actually the fastest low-profile graphics card you can buy, thanks to its relatively fast Cape Verde graphics processor. In this review, we will find out whether that is good enough for serious gaming using your HTPC. AMD's HD 7700 Series has been out for a while now and most board partners have released their customs designs. The card is based on AMD 28 nanometer silicon combined with the GCN shader architecture that promises lower power consumption at increased performance.

Coming with such a unique feature set, Club3D is asking a price premium of around 20 EUR for the low-profile capability. Their card retails at € 115, which is similar to the pricing of a typical HD 7770. Club 3D's card comes with a surprisingly compact footprint for a HD 7750. You can just remove the analog VGA output to make it fit into a low-profile PC. The card requires a single slot in your system.

Display connectivity options include one dual-link DVI ports, one full-size HDMI port, and one detachable VGA output. You may use all the outputs at the same time. An HDMI sound device is included in the GPU as well. It is HDMI 1.4a compatible, and includes HD audio and Blu-ray 3D movies support. The DisplayPort outputs are version 1.2 which enables the use of hubs and Multi-Stream Transport. The card has no CrossFire connectors, all multi-GPU data is transferred via the PCI-Express bus.

Analysis

Club3D uses a very basic, small cooler that does its job just fine, thanks to the low heat output of the GPU. The card requires no additional power connector; all power comes from the PCI-Express bus. This power configuration is good for up to 75 W of power draw.

Power Consumption

Power consumption of this low-profile HD 7750 is surprisingly low. In non-gaming states, we see almost negligible power consumption with the exception of Blu-ray power being a bit high (like on all AMD cards); NVIDIA's low-end options do better here. During gaming, only 40 W of power are needed, which is far from the 75 W theoretically possible without extra power connector. Low power consumption is key to enabling this card design because all power is converted into heat that has to be handled by the smaller low-profile heatsink. In our performance per Watt ranking, the card easily claims the number one spot with quite a bit margin of 5-10% vs. other modern solutions.

Overclocking

Performance OC

The maximum stable clocks of our card are 895 MHz core (12% overclock) and 1395 MHz memory (24% overclock).
Overclocking potential is slim, but that doesn't matter much for a media PC card in this performance class.


Performance per Watt

Performance per Watt

Value and Conclusion

Club3D's HD 7750 Low Profile is available in Europe for around € 115 (incl. VAT). We converted this price to USD 125 for our comparison.

PROS

  • Low-profile, single slot
  • Fastest low-profile card on the market
  • Native full-size HDMI output with included audio
  • Low power consumption
  • Support for PCI-Express 3.0 and DirectX 11.1
  • AMD ZeroCore power for reduced power consumption

CONS

  • Noisy under load, not that quiet in idle
  • High price
  • CCC Overdrive limits too low


Value and Conclusion

Club3D's HD 7750 Low Profile is the fastest low-profile single slot graphics card available on the market today. This makes it a good candidate for use in a compact media PC that has enough power for gaming sessions on the big screen. Unfortunately, overall performance is just not good enough for maxxed out full HD gaming with most titles. Some older games, or games optimized to run well on weaker hardware, like all Blizzard games, will work well though. More demanding games should be alright if you sacrifice some details settings or anti-aliasing; running lower resolution is always an option as well. A HD 7700 Series card is just not fast enough to build a lean and mean gaming PC. Club3D did not overclock their card out of the box, and we see its performance matching the AMD reference design as expected. Power consumption of the card is ultra-low, especially in idle where it just needs 6 Watts. Power consumption is also very modest during gaming with just 40 W. Like on all AMD cards, Blu-ray power consumption is a bit high at 21 Watts. NVIDIA's cards do much better here. On the other hand, AMD's cards have support for ZeroCore power, essentially turning the card off while the screen is off, or during stand-by. A godsend for a media PC that is running all the time to, for example, download files in the background. The card's compact cooler does a good job of keeping the card cool, but it is not the quietest. Idle fan noise is alright, but nothing to write home about. Under load, the small fan increases its speed a lot and ends up being quite noisy, especially for the card's performance class. I had hoped for a more noise optimized fan profile given the low temperatures and the usage model for this card.. Price-wise, Club3D is asking € 115 including VAT, which we converted into $125 for our comparisons. A normal HD 7750 costs around $100 and a HD 7770 costs $125. If you really need a fast low-profile card, the Club 3D HD 7750 Low Profile is basically your only choice for a reasonable price. Go for the cheapest passively-cooled card you can find if you just want to watch movies. There are other options out there that provide a better bang for the buck for gaming if you can live with a full-sized card - like the HD 6850 or 6870, both of which also take up a lot more space and are not low-profile compatible.

The Club3D Radeon HD 7750 Low Profile receives the Highly Recommended award.

Highly Recommended Award

Learn more about the product, click here

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