PowerColor PCS+ HD 7870 Myst Edition Reviewccokeman -
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PowerColor HD 7870 Myst Edition Testing:
Testing of the PowerColor PCS+ HD 7870 Myst 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 a range of capabilities to show where each card falls on the performance ladder. The games used are some of today's newest and most popular titles, which should be able to provide 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 11 testing, where PhysX will be disabled in the NVIDIA Control Panel, if applicable. I will first test the cards at stock speeds, and then overclocked to see the effects of an increase in clock speed. The cards will be placed in order from highest to lowest performance in each graph to show where they fall by comparison. The NVIDIA comparison cards will be using the 310.70 drivers with AMD cards using the Catalyst 12.11 drivers and latest CAP profile.
- Processors: Core i7 2600K @ 4.4 GHz 100 x 44
- CPU Cooling: Corsair Hydro Series H100
- Motherboard: Gigabyte Z68AP-D3
- Memory: Mushkin 993997 9-11-10-28 (1866 MHz)
- Video Card: PowerColor PCS+ HD 7870 Myst Edition
- Power Supply: Corsair AX1200
- Hard Drive: Corsair Force GT 240GB
- Optical Drive: Lite-On Blu-Ray
- Case: Corsair Obsidian 650D
- OS: Windows 7 Professional 64-bit
Comparison Video Cards:
- PowerColor PCS+ HD 7870 Myst Edition Core 1180MHz, Memory 1618MHz
PowerColor's HD 7870 showed some serious overclocking prowess with a significant boost in core clock speed with a smaller boost in the overall memory clock speed. By using MSI's Afterburner utility I was able to boost the clock speed on the core by 255MHz over the baseline non-boosted clock speed of 925MHz. That in itself is a 27%+ boost in clock speed without the ability to tweak the voltage outside of adjusting the power limit. The memory overclocking was a bit subdued with a 112MHz bump over the factory 1500MHz or just over 7%. In each and every benchmark the clock speed increases offered up significant FPS or scoring improvements that add performance for your dollar. To ensure stability I did increase the fan speed to 100% to keep the GPU as cool as it could be under load. With just the single fan and smallish heat sink the temperatures were higher than I was expecting but still low enough to stabilize the overclocks.
Maximum Clock Speeds:
Testing for the maximum clock speed consisted of looping Unigine 3.0 for 30 minutes each to see where the clock speeds failed when pushed. If the clock speed adjustment failed, then the clock speeds and tests were rerun until they passed a full hour of testing.
- Gaming Tests:
- Metro 2033
- Batman: Arkham City
- Battlefield 3
- Unigine Heaven Benchmark 3.0
- Sid Meier's Civilization V
- DiRT 3
- Mafia II
- 3DMark 11
- Power Consumption