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Sapphire HD 6970 FleX Battlefield 3 Edition Review

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Testing of the Sapphire HD 6970 FleX Battlefield 3 Edition will consist of running it and comparison cards through the OverclockersClub.com suite of games and synthetic benchmarks. This will test the performance against many popular competitors. Comparisons will be made to cards of equal and greater capabilities to show where they fall on the performance ladder. The games used are some of today's newest and most popular titles to give you an idea of how the cards perform relative to each other.

The system specifications will remain the same throughout the testing. No adjustment will be made to the respective control panels during the testing, with the exception of the 3DMark Vantage testing, where PhysX will be disabled in the NVIDIA control panel if applicable. I will test the cards at stock speeds, then overclocked in order to see the effects of any increases in clock speed. The cards are placed in order from highest to lowest performing in the graphs to show where the cards fall by comparison. The drivers used are the 11.7 Catalyst drivers for AMD-based cards and the 275.27 for NVIDIA-based cards.


Comparison Video Cards:



  • Sapphire HD6970 FleX Battlefield 3 Edition | GPU - 998 MHz | Memory - 1508MHz

I already had a good feeling as to what this card would overclock to and what I experienced with this card was nothing out of the ordinary. After using Sapphire's TriXX Utility to find the max speeds at stock volts, I ramped the voltage up to 1.275V and went at it. After much hope, I wasn't able to get this card stable over 1000MHz on the core — but I honestly tried. Some chips are better than others, and even with this being one of the "better" clock speeds out there, I was hoping to break the 1GHz barrier! Nevertheless, coming from stock (out of the box) speeds of 930MHz on the core and 1100MHz on the memory, I achieved an overclock of only 7% on the core, though I managed over 35% on the memory! I didn't expect a huge "percentage" on the core clock because it is already 50MHz over the reference speed, so in reality I was able to reach over 13% above stock. It appears that regardless of the cooler temperatures from the upper-end cooler, this was all I was going to get at 1.275V where I'm comfortable about the health of the card. Comparing to other cards [in this review], it fared out at third place overall in core speed and second place on the memory. Not too bad!



Maximum Clock Speeds:

Testing for the maximum clock speed consists of looping Crysis Warhead and Unigine 2.5 for 30 minutes each to see where the clock speeds will fail when pushed. If the clock speed adjustment fails, then the clock speeds and tests are rerun until they pass the full hour of testing.



  • Gaming Tests:
  1. Aliens vs. Predator
  2. Metro 2033
  3. Civilization V
  4. HAWX 2
  5. Just Cause 2
  6. Unigine Heaven Benchmark 2.5
  7. Mafia II
  8. Battlefield: Bad Company 2
  9. Lost Planet 2
  10. 3DMark 11
  • Usage:
  1. Temperature
  2. Power Consumption

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