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Nov 1, 2011

Sapphire Intros HD 6970 Graphics Card with Dual-BIOS and Dual-Fan Cooling

Sapphire has just updated its graphics card lineup to include a new model based on the Radeon HD 6970 design that comes with a custom designed cooler and PCB in order to deliver improved performance and overclocking headroom.

The new cooling assembly was developed in-house by Sapphire and sports two 90mm fans, which the maker states can move the same amount of air at 10% lower rotation speeds than conventional fans.

This helps Sapphire decrease the noise produced by the card while operating, and also enabled its creation to keep the Radeon HD 6970 running at temperatures 25% cooler than the standard model, even under load conditions.

In addition to the improved cooling system, the graphics card comes fitted with a Dual BIOS feature enabling users to choose between two performance settings, one running the card at stock and the other overclocked.

In the 'boost' setting the core voltage of the GPU is raised to 1.2V, the fan speed is set to a high performance profile and the Powertune adjustment for overclocking is raised by 50%.

This increases the maximum frequency limits available in AMD Overdrive or in Sapphire's own TriXX overclocking tool to a ceiling of 1500MHz for the GPU and 2000MHz for the 2GB of GDDR5 memory.

As far as video outputs are concerned, Sapphire's creation is equipped with two DVI, one HDMI and two mini DisplayPort connectors, and can support a VGA monitor with the dongle supplied. AMD Eyefinity is also supported.

Sadly, Sapphire hasn't provided us with any details regarding the availability or the price of this graphics card.

AMD's Radeon HD 6970 is based on the company's Cayman XT core and packs 1536 stream processors, 96 texture units, 32 ROP units and a 256-bit memory bus that is usually connected to 2GB of video buffer.

16,000 x 16,000 Resolutions Now Supported by AMD

We already spoke about the AMD Catalyst Display Driver 11.10, (we caught it even before the change log showed up), but there is one thing that should be mentioned in particular. 

That one thing isn't how the package incorporated the fixes of the Catalyst 11.10 V3 preview, nor is it the fact that the 11.9 CAP4 Catalyst Application Profiles should be installed alongside it. 

Not that these aren't highly relevant facts, of course, but there is little doubt that the maximum supported resolution of Radeon HD 6000 cards might floor some people in comparison. 

Though only six-display (5+1) Eyefinity setups will actually support it, it is worth mentioning that the maximum resolution is now 16,000 x 16,000 pixels. 

As a bonus, it is also possible to compensate for bezel thickness when the displays used are mismatched in that regard.


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