ASUS EAH6870 DirectCU ReviewRHKCommander959 - January 17, 2011
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Temperature testing will be accomplished by loading the video card to 100% using MSI Kombuster, which is paired with MSI's Afterburner overclocking utility for temperature monitoring. I will be using the stability test set to a resolution of 1920 x 1200 using 8xAA. I will use a 15 minute time frame to run the test, ensuring that the maximum thermal threshold is reached. The fan speed will be left in the control of the driver package and video card's BIOS for the stock load test, with the fan moved to 100% to see the best possible cooling scenario for the overclocked load test. The idle test will be a 20 minute cool down with the fan speeds left on automatic in the stock speed testing and bumped up to 100% when running the overclocked idle and load testing. For load testing the GTX 580 and GTX 570, I will use Crysis Warhead run at 2560 x 1600 using the Gamer setting with 8xAA looping the Avalanche benchmark scenario, as I have found this to put a load close to that of Kombuster on a video card. This is needed as a way around the current limiting ability of the GTX 500 series when it detects programs that put an unrealistic load on the GPU, which Kombuster does.
- Monitoring with MSI Afterburner
- GPU Stability test in MSI Kombuster
- 15 minute load duration
- 20 minute idle duration
- Temperature measured in degrees Celsius
Lower = Better
The ASUS EAH6870 HD DirectCU copper heat sink provided some of the best results for the whole grouping! At idle stock it bested the next in line from AMD by five degrees, at load stock the cards come closer together but the ASUS still wins. Overclocked idle moved the ASUS back but loaded, it took second. Altogether a great showing and since the card uses a fan rather than a blower motor, the sounds weren't nearly as loud as cards that do use blowers. Still, it was the loudest device in the computer at full speed. 60°C was the top temperature the ASUS reached at stock load, during much of the testing the temperatures fluctuated as low as 58°C.