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Sapphire HD 6770 FleX Edition Review

ccokeman    -   July 3, 2011
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Testing:

Testing of the Sapphire HD 6770 FleX 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. 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 11.5 Catalyst drivers for the AMD-based cards and the 275.27 for NVIDIA-based cards

 

Comparison Video Cards:

  • Sapphire HD 6750
  • Sapphire HD 6670 Ultimate
  • XFX HD 6790
  • ASUS GTX 550 Ti TOP
  • Gigabyte GTX 560 OC

 

Overclocking:

 

 

  • Sapphire HD 6770 FleX 945MHz Core / 1374MHz Memory

Overclocking this card could not have been simpler — enable overclocking in the Catalyst control panel, open Afterburner, set fan speed to 100%, firewall the clock speeds for the memory and GPU core, and then test. Things went according to plan until halfway through my test scenario, when the card locked up and gave me a wonderful black screen that is so typical of the failure mode on a bad overclock on the core. I backed the GPU core clock speed down to 945MHz from the 960 maximum on the card and then was greeted with texture-tearing and a grey screen of death. Whoops, the memory was a bit too high and needed to be adjusted down to 1374MHz for a good solid clean run through the stability testing scenario. This gave me a final result of 95MHz on the core and 1374MHz on the memory. If percentages are more of what one looks at, the core increase is just over 11%, while the memory boost comes in at a nice 14.5% bump in memory clock speed. These increases offered up measurable increases in all the games and synthetic benchmarks tested. One area of concern with AMD cards is the fan used to vent the heat outside the chassis and cool the card. The Sapphire FleX Edition card uses a non-reference heat pipe-based cooling solution for this chore. The fan used is quiet when spooled up to its maximum speed. It is audible, but is no where close to the noise of the reference cooling solution. During the load testing, the highest temperature recorded was 67 degrees Celsius when overclocked. The fan speed was tweaked to 100% to achieve this. The temperature recorded under load with the driver controlling the fan speed was 64 degrees Celsius, with the fan only spooling up to 44%. On this card, there is not currently a tool that can adjust or tweak the voltage. The value is reported in Sapphire's TRIXX utility, but is not adjustable nor are the clock speeds available for adjustment, Afterburner was exactly the opposite, with the clock speeds being adjustable, but no voltage value or ability to adjust it. Even so, real world performance benefits from the overclocking ability of this card. Will all the cards in this series respond similarly? Most likely not — your mileage may vary with some cards better and some worse.

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 one 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



  1. Introduction & Closer Look
  2. Closer Look: Video Card
  3. Specifications & Features
  4. Testing: Setup & Overclocking
  5. Testing: Aliens vs. Predator
  6. Metro 2033
  7. Testing: Civilization V
  8. Testing: Tom Clancy's HAWX 2
  9. Testing: Lost Planet 2
  10. Testing: Unigine 2.5
  11. Testing:Just Cause 2
  12. Testing: Mafia II
  13. Testing: Battlefield: Bad Company 2
  14. Testing: 3DMark 11
  15. Testing: Eyefinity Testing
  16. Testing: Temperature
  17. Testing: Power Consumption
  18. Conclusion
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