The evolution during growth and subsequent annealing of the <111> fiber texture in magnetron-sputtered nanocrystalline Au films has been studied experimentally using X-ray diffraction with synchrotron radiation. To quantitatively investigate this fiber texture, grain orientation distributions were recorded in situ during growth and during subsequent annealing using Bragg-Brentano geometry. The (111) diffraction intensity was measured as a function of the sample tilt χ, the tilt axis lying at the intersection of the film surface and the scattering plane. As a quantitative measure of the texture, we used the width of the orientation distributions. The grain-orientation distributions narrowed during annealing. The activation energy for the process behind this texture change was found to be 0.64 ± 0.05 eV, close to the activation energy for grain boundary self-diffusion in nanocrystalline Au. This and the narrowing of the grain orientation distributions led us to suggest that the observed changes in texture originated from grain rotations and not from grain growth. Grain growth did not take place at the lower temperatures, where changes in orientation distributions were observed.