AMD has finally released its Radeon HD 7950 graphics card to the world, the second tier of the manufacturer's Southern Islands/AMD HD 7000 series cards.

Was it worth the wait? Well you will be pleased to know that yes it was…and then some.

This new graphics card is based on the same 28nm Graphics Core Next GPU as the AMD Radeon HD 7970, code-named Tahiti.

This Tahiti Pro is ever so slightly cut down compared to the HD 7970's Tahiti XT, but the disparity in performance is mostly down to the lower core clockspeed.

The AMD Radeon HD 7950 is clocked at a fairly conservative 800MHz compared to the HD 7970's 925MHz.

AMD radeon hd 7950

We say conservative as the Tahiti Pro GPU, from all the cards we've seen, is more than capable of topping the 1GHz mark. So it's a bit of a shame that we haven't seen a HD 7000 series card hitting the 1GHz core clock speed out of the box.

Though there are rumours a certain Taiwanese graphics card manufacturer may be releasing an overclocked Radeon HD 7950 with that very rating.

We've been playing with a couple of the cards for a while now and of everything it's the overclocking prowess of the Radeon HD 7950 that makes it such an outstanding card.

The fact that it also bests the Nvidia GeForce GTX 580 in pretty much all the benchmarks, and ably keeps pace with the Radeon HD 7970 only adds to that.

And does it all for less cash than either.

You can check out our AMD Radeon HD 7950 review and the factory-overclocked Sapphire Radeon HD 7950 OverClock edition review on the TechRadar Components Channel right now.

Sapphire radeon hd 7950

Suffice to say that if we were spending serious money on a graphics card right now it would be on an AMD Radeon HD 7950.

Nvidia is going to have to work hard to produce a card for the same price that out does it on performance.