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XFX Radeon HD 6870 Black Edition Review

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Closer Look:

As I remove the card from its antistatic bag, I begin to realize how spoiled I am becoming. I am greeted not by some over-the-top stickered card with some crazy sticker and printed on lines and accents, but by a card with real depth and lines that are actually there, not printed on a sticker. The XFX Radeon HD 6870 Black Edition card looks outstanding with its dual fanned design easily noted as its most prominent design feature. The casing is primarily matte black, appropriate given the card's Black Edition status. Two thin chrome ‘racing stripes’ run the length of the casing while the three heat pipes extrude from the casing quite imposingly. The side of the card has a very basic name tag next to the heat pipes and the XFX styled vent shroud makes for a nice touch on the end of the card.

















This Black Edition card has an impressive assortment of connections. Featuring dual DVI ports, dual DisplayPorts and an HDMI 1.4a port. You should have no trouble hooking in any kind of monitor array you like including stereoscopic 3D over HDMI! I am rather disappointed to not see a single adapter bundled with the card to convert from mini DisplayPort to DVI or DVI to VGA. Considering the bargain bin price for them to include such adapters, it should have been a no-brainer especially since DisplayPort is by no means readily available in the monitor kingdom yet. The card only requires dual 6-pin PCI power connections due to the 6000 series focus on efficiency and refinement.



The 6870 BE is Crossfire X capable, the bridge is found readily accessible in the standard location along the edge of the card. I like the implementation of AMDs Crossfire X Technology better than NVIDIA’s SLI at the moment if only because of its ability to mix and match cards within the same series together for a performance increase, whereas NVIDIA requires an identical card to link in SLI. I do miss PhysX processing though when gaming.


The dual fan heat sink included with the 6870 Black Edition card looks to be much better than the stock heatsink.



The Black Edition label brings the expectation of a fairly hefty factory overclock. The card does not disappoint coming in with 940MHz on the core and 1150MHz on the GDDR5 memory. I expect that with this intense cooling solution, there will be very few people able to resist the urge of overclocking further though to see just how far this card can go…



Let’s check out the official specs of this card and then see if they stack up to the OCC Test Bench Suite!

  1. Introduction & Closer Look
  2. Closer Look (Continued)
  3. Specifications & Features
  4. Testing: Setup & Overclocking
  5. Testing: Aliens vs Predator
  6. Testing: Metro 2033
  7. Testing: Crysis Warhead
  8. Testing: Call of Duty Modern Warfare 2
  9. Testing: Just Cause 2
  10. Testing: Unigine 2.1
  11. Testing: Battlefield Bad Company 2
  12. Testing: 3DMark 11
  13. Testing: 3DMark Vantage
  14. Testing: Temperatures
  15. Testing: Power Consumption
  16. Conclusion
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