The first thing we need to talk about is the price of the card. At $509.99 US it's not the cheapest card on the planet. From a value perspective it's also not the best option when compared to buying a pair of HD 6870s. But, like the HD 6990 and the GTX 590, there are so many other benefits that are associated with buying a dual GPU card.
For starters, I think that Dual GPU cards can have a much stronger presence these days due to the fact that CrossFire and SLI dual GPU scaling is so strong. It means that these dual GPU cards really offer performance that can equate to 2x that of the original card.
The acceptance of larger coolers as well means that we can have really good cooling solutions on them. While the PowerColor HD 6870x2 is indeed a dual slot card, you're going to need to give it a bit of breathing room so it can draw cool air in over those GPUs.
Another huge positive to these dual GPU solutions that when you use something like a Z68 platform that has only one 16x slot, you can run the card at full speed instead of having it run at x8 / x8. It's not so relevant for the X58 platform, but the value that the Z68 platform holds means that this is a hot topic.
On a whole, the single card solution also runs slightly cooler thanks to the card not having any issue getting air, which certainly helps when it's overclocked and has more voltage running through the cores. Overclocking potential is very strong with it getting 1GHz on the cores and 5GHz QDR on the memory.
That means that performance is strong, and really, when it comes down to it, if you're buying a $500 US graphics card, the performance of it is so important.
It would be nice to see it a little cheaper, but it's unique; it's the first time PowerColor have dabbled into this area - it's the first custom dual GPU offering we've seen from any company so far and it's just a good all round performer. There's very little not to like about this card and a whole lot to love.
PowerColor has done a great job here and I think outside of just offering us a great product, it really shows us what PowerColor is capable of. While some would argue that you only need a card like this if you're using multiple monitors, we say they're wrong, because you can look at Aliens vs. Predator and Mafia II at 1920 x 1200 with AA / AF on and see performance that is perfect for gaming at those resolutions.
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- Page 1 [Introduction and Package]
- Page 2 [Card & Specification]
- Page 3 [Test System Setup and 3DMark 11]
- Page 4 [3DMark Vantage]
- Page 5 [Unigine Heaven Benchmark]
- Page 6 [Benchmarks - Resident Evil 5]
- Page 7 [Benchmarks - Tom Clancy's H.A.W.X. 2]
- Page 8 [Benchmarks - Mafia II]
- Page 9 [Benchmarks - Lost Planet 2]
- Page 10 [Benchmarks - Aliens vs. Predator]
- Page 11 [Benchmarks - Street Fighter IV]
- Page 12 [Benchmarks - Far Cry 2]
- Page 13 [Benchmarks - Batman Arkham Asylum]
- Page 14 [Benchmarks - High Quality AA and AF]
- Page 15 [Temperature Test]
- Page 16 [Sound Test]
- Page 17 [Power Consumption Tests]
- Page 18 [Total Performance Rating (TPR)]
- Page 19 [Total Value Rating (TVR)]
- Page 20 [Final Thoughts]
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