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Hardware ATI Radeon HD 6970 2GB Review

Discussion in 'Article Discussion' started by Guest-16, 15 Dec 2010.

  1. Xtrafresh

    Xtrafresh It never hurts to help

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    Haha, it all seems so important when you are discussing here, but in practice even a 30% diffeence in framerates only meas you need to turn off AA. the truth is i've been happily using a single 5870 for eyefinity for a while now.

    You are absolutely right, once you get it running, none of this will matter! Triplescreen gaming, being Surround or Eyefinity, absolutely rawks :rock:
     
  2. Tangster

    Tangster Butt-kicking for goodness!

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    meh. It's a GTX 560. Drop the price to <£200 and I'm interested, otherwise I'm skipping this generation as well.
     
  3. xaser04

    xaser04 Ba Ba Ba BANANA!

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    GTX570 should be fine in Surround as long as you stay within the framebuffer limit (1280MB).

    Its the framebuffer for Eyefinity / Surround that makes the HD6950/6970 look more appealling to me than the GTX570 although this doesn't make the 570 a bad card. The 2560x1600 results seem to bear out that the 69xx series should be very good for Eyefinity resolutions.
     
  4. memeroot

    memeroot aged and experianced

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    does the frame buffer count so much when there are 2 cards?

    is a 480 likely to be faster?
     
  5. runadumb

    runadumb What's a Dremel?

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    I haven't received my cards yet. It was told to me by someone on this forum, may not be the case or may even be an early driver issue. Can't find anything about it in Nvidia's forums.
     
  6. Doctor Hades

    Doctor Hades Dreamer

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    I have to agree that bit-tech's graphics card reviews are a little lacking, particularly as far as games testing is concerned. I can understand the lack of space in a magazine being the reason for a lack of depth but not on a website. Compared with Anandtech and HardOCP, bit-tech look a little anaemic really.

    That aside, these cards look excellent value for money. I like that they have 2 GB of memory and the dual-BIOS is an inspired touch. I'm still not convinced that AMD's tessellation is as good as it could be though and the brick-like design of the cards is not only ugly to look at but apparently detrimental to cooling in CrossFireX unless you can space the cards apart.

    If I didn't already own a GTX 580 then I'd likely have bought a HD 6970. Not for CFX though as I ditched HD 5870 CFX for a single card as I was fed up of 80% of my games running with negative scaling, with one card disabled or disappointing scaling not to mention occasional microstuttering. bit-tech have always advised against multi-GPU setups for gaming and I'm with them on that!
     
  7. Mraedis

    Mraedis What's a Dremel?

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    Do not confuse:

    Wolfenstein 3D (1992)
    Return to Castle Wolfenstein (2001)
    Wolfenstein (2009)
     
  8. runadumb

    runadumb What's a Dremel?

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    And yet the sites that show CFX/SLi results mostly come back saying how well the games scale. Maybe it is only for the few select games but I do wonder if the drivers on both sides haven't now reached a level that makes it a good option. At least I am hopping that as I am going for my first (maybe last?) dualGPU setup. Everythings fine, im sure. :worried:
     
  9. memeroot

    memeroot aged and experianced

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    I think SLI has always been strong - xfire had issues with the 58 series these have been reduced significantly with this gen the story goes so that it competes 1:1 with sli (metro excluded)

    I also wouldn't worry regarding the 570's running max all the time - I very much doubt it.

    and to make the decision just a little more fun

    http://news.softpedia.com/news/GTX-560-Specs-and-Release-Date-Leaked-172374.shtml

    jan 20th
     
    Last edited: 15 Dec 2010
  10. xaser04

    xaser04 Ba Ba Ba BANANA!

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    I am aware of which wolfenstein they tested (although perhaps old was an incorrect term on my account), it was just a bit weird to see a rather obscure game on their lineup.

    memeroot - If anything frame buffer matters more when you are running dual card configs as more than likely you will running higher settings and / or a higher resolution and hence the frame buffer requirement will be higher.

    I havn't seen specific benchmarks but I would imagine GTX480 SLI will be faster than GTX570 SLI at surround resolutions - especially in games that use a lot of memory such as Metro 2033. The 480's combination of more memory and more ROPs' should tip the scales in its favour at these settings.

    (The above ignores the relevant disadvantages of the GTX480 such as noise, power consumption and heat).

    I am almost half tempted to get two GTX480's second hand to give me a very large boost over my 460's whilst offering more memory than the 570's for Surround.

    EDIT: Good find on the GTX560 specs. A quick and dirty "shader ops - (clock speed x shader count)" calculation shows the following:

    GTX570 - 351,360 (480 x 732)
    GTX560 - 336,000 (384 x 875)

    GTX480 - 336,000 (480 x 700)

    In overall performance terms they could be quite close in some games.
     
    Last edited: 15 Dec 2010
  11. wyx087

    wyx087 Homeworld 3 is happening!!

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    it's been the case for ever.

    all nvidia cards run at full speed when more than one monitor is enabled. on OCuk forums, you can find a person asking about idle temperature on his gtx580, solved by disable the TV connected via HDMI and running in single monitor mode.

    however, SLI with surround might be different. i personally never touch multi-GPU, so don't have any idea on that front.

    and all ATI cards run at low 3D speeds, on 5870 it was 400MHz instead of lowest possible 2D clock speed. so it's not that much of a difference between the two companies.
     
  12. technogiant

    technogiant What's a Dremel?

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    VERY disappointing....so not close to the fastest single gpu, not even overwhelmingly a win in the price performance catagory as the 570 is also very good value, I suppose the only win is in performance per watt?

    Thinking back to what Nvidia did with the did with the 460 I think the 560 when it comes out is going to realy kick AMD this time, oced versions of the 460 were very close to the 470, if the 560 almost matches the 570 and is in the sub £200 bracket then AMD are in for a right whooping.
     
  13. Yslen

    Yslen Lord of the Twenty-Seventh Circle

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    The 6870 looks like the best deal here (which I'm pretty happy about, having bought one!).

    The Legitreviews article posted further up this thread (http://www.legitreviews.com/article/1488/8/) shows the 6870 beating the 6950 both in crossfire and as single cards in Just Cause 2.

    In Metro 2033 the pattern is repeated, with the 6870 sitting between the 6950 and 6970 in a crossfire comparison, though it does drop behind the 6950 as a single card.

    What I'd like to see is a comparison of two 6870s vs a single 6970 in an eyefinity setup. The crossfired cards cost about £60 more but pack a significant amount more whollop. What I want to know is whether the less powerful single card option is actually the better choice performance-wise due to its 2GB of fast memory.

    I can afford a single 6970 or two 6870s, but I don't think I could stretch to two 6950s or two 6970s. Any thoughts?
     
  14. Sloth

    Sloth #yolo #swag

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    I'm a little confused by this post and many other similar ones.

    The 6870 isn't meant to compare the the GTX580 at all. I'm not sure why anyone ever expected the 6870 to be the fastest card, AMD even show that on their roadmaps. Whether it performs better or worse than a GTX570 is what you should be looking at because that's what it's designed to compete with both in price and performance (in this case it seems to fall behind, but it's obviously designed for this range).

    What's designed to compete with the GTX580 is the 6990. So what does it matter if it's not single GPU? If it costs similarly and performs similarly then it's competition. A key thing to note: dual GPU on a single card still has to follow the same PCI specs. It's running under the same limitations as any other card. The "fastest single GPU" title is largely arbitrary creation.
     
  15. wyx087

    wyx087 Homeworld 3 is happening!!

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    6990 will, if like 5970, be crossfire on a stick. nothing to be amazed at to be honest. even if it's a single card, you will still have to live with it like it's a multiple GPU setup.

    besides, 6990 is not designed to compete with gtx580, two cayman or even two barts will be a lot faster than any current single GPU. 6990 is looking to compete with rumoured gtx595, beat gtx580 out right.
     
  16. Sloth

    Sloth #yolo #swag

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    But the key is that it's a single card. It's following the same PCI specs as any other single card. It's taking the same 300W max and 16 lanes and going about working with it in a different way, it's still quite comparable to a single GPU card.

    But you're totally right about the limitations and drawbacks of dual GPU cards. I don't mean to say that the 6990 will be any better than its competition and would like to point out how the 5970's performance is... debatable. It just irks me when people seem to get in their heads the idea that because it has two GPUs it's not comparable. IF (note the if) either manufacturer cranks out a dual GPU card at the same price point as an opponent's single GPU card then the two are comparable.
     
  17. technogiant

    technogiant What's a Dremel?

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    There was no indication that 6970 was meant to be acompetitior for 570 prior to launch, its just because that its performance ended up similar to the 570 that it appears in a juxta position to it in the AMD slides and that it has been priced in a similar range.

    If it had performed as well as the 580 it would have appeared along side it in the AMD slide and have been priced accordingly.

    The only reason AMD is NOW saying it is a 570 competitor is because it has failed to compete with the 580.

    Fastest single gpu is not an abitary term, many people will not entertain a multi gpu setup be that on a single card or otherwise because of driver issues and micro stutter as you are aware, to them it is important to have capable single gpu, sadley in the 6000 series has failed to deliver this option which is sad considering they managed to acheive this with their recent previous generations.
     
  18. Kovoet

    Kovoet What's a Dremel?

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    Easy solution to this get a second hand or new 5970 and they are still around lol. Love my cards
     
  19. Nikols

    Nikols What's a Dremel?

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    but there are a hell of a lot of rumours that a dual gtx is due so where will that fit in. I call bullsh$t on amd's annoucement that they are after the 570 with the 6970... Id say the release of the 580 blew them out of the water. Head over to tweaktown.com and read their 20 page (pro amd) review. The 6970 was built to pip the gtx480 and be the fastest card at year end. The gtx5?? series came out of nowhere. AMD saw the window to concentrate on upgrading their tesselation/ AA support seeing as the gtx 480 was only 6 months old and they were knocking on the heals of it already with the 5870. They underestimated the market and have done some quick thinking and price adjusting on their feet to compensate. On a plus side, both manufacturers are now on a relatively level pegging in terms of raw grunt/ tesselation/AA for the next gen of cards so Id say we can look forward to a decent battle in 2011/2012. The only problem for AMD is they could take a hit with a lot of people switching back to nvidia this gen. In this high end range, performance and tricks are king

    http://www.tweaktown.com/reviews/3735/sapphire_radeon_hd_6970_2gb_video_card/index.html
     
    Last edited: 15 Dec 2010
  20. Sloth

    Sloth #yolo #swag

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    The 6000 series follows in the same path as the 5000 series. The 6970 is the successor to the 5870. So in a sense you are right, the 6970 was not specifically to match any card. It was, however, designed to be in the same price point as its predecessor, so I find it strange that you consider this series is a let down when the 5870 wasn't the top single GPU card either (though it's a let down that they don't compete too well on their price points). The 6000 series roadmaps clearly show that Cayman is not designed to be AMD's top end offering. Think about it: if Cayman countered Nvidia's top end, what would Antilles be? It's based on the same architecture, it can't be much better than itself watt for watt, so if you've got a single GPU card pushing to the roof of the spec then your dual GPU card will just be getting to the same place via a different route, so to speak.

    Additionally, Crossfire (or SLI) problems are problems that are happening now, not necessarily problems that will be happening in the hypothetical then. They are a flaw of the software controlling the underlying technology. Look at the dramatic increase in scaling which we've seen over the years, and the greater compatability with games. We're still taking two cards and linking them together, but now it's doing better because we have better software (with some hardware tweaks, I'm sure, but these aren't as prominent). Those flaws are largely superficial and I hate seeing new ideas put down because some early limitations.
     

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