Archive Home arrow Reviews: arrow Video Cards arrow AMD Radeon HD 6990 Antilles Video Card
AMD Radeon HD 6990 Antilles Video Card E-mail
Reviews - Featured Reviews: Video Cards
Written by Olin Coles   
Monday, 07 March 2011
Table of Contents: Page Index
AMD Radeon HD 6990 Antilles Video Card
Radeon HD 6990 Appearance
Antilles Detailed Features
Antilles Features and Specifications
Video Card Testing Methodology
DX9 SSAO: Mafia II
DX10: 3DMark Vantage
DX10: Crysis Warhead
DX11: 3DMark11
DX11: Aliens vs Predator
DX11: Battlefield Bad Company 2
DX11: BattleForge
DX11: Lost Planet 2
DX11: Metro 2033
DX11: Unigine Heaven 2.1
Overclocking and Temperatures
VGA Power Consumption
Radeon HD 6990 Conclusion

Antilles Detailed Features

In the image below, we've included an exposed PCB illustration supplied by AMD. According to their media presentation, the Radeon HD 6990 uses a special phase-change thermal interface material that loses its effectiveness once the heatsink has been removed. Used in conjunction with an improved cooling solution, according to AMD the Radeon HD 6990 yields 8% better thermal performance when compared to previous thermal management solutions they've used. Click on the image below for a larger high-resolution version.

AMD-Radeon-HD-6990-Exposed-PCB.jpg

The redesigned cooling solution on Antilles uses two independent heatsinks mounted between a blower motor fan to cool each Cayman GPU. Will this be enough? We reveal our temperature testing results later on in this article.

AMD-Radeon-HD-6990-Heatsink.jpg

Antilles uses two 40nm Cayman GPUs on the Radeon HD 6990. Each GPU is clocked to 830 MHz by default, but can be switched to 880 MHz using the dual-BIOS. Additionally, AMD's PowerTune software allows the same options through the Catalyst Control Center.

AMD-Radeon-HD-6990-Cayman-GPU.jpg

A pair of Cooper Bussmann coupled inductors labeled with CLA1108-4-50TR-R markings are surrounded by what AMD is referring to as digital programmable regulators made by Volterra Semiconductor.

AMD-Radeon-HD-6990-Volterra-Regulators.jpg

The AMD Radeon HD 6990 features 4GB GDDR5 video frame buffer memory, supplied by several Hynix H5GQ2H24MFR-T2C components. Hynix defines the speed of these parts using the T2C indicator code, which represents 2.5 GHz. According to Hynix, this GDDR5 graphics memory can reach 5.0 Gbps bandwidth with 1.5V or 3.6 Gbps with 1.35V, depending on voltage applied.

AMD-Radeon-HD-6990-Hynix-GDDR5.jpg

AMD clocks the GDDR5 to 1250 MHz, regardless of dual-BIOS switch position. By creating a custom BIOS, or by using software tools, hardware enthusiasts can further tweak the performance of their Radeon HD 6990.



 

Comments 

 
# Power requirementsBanzai 2011-03-08 05:45
Power seems to be respectable compared to other cards, it really manages itsel properly while giving good perfomance. Although it lost at Metro against ali'd rigs, the 6990 seems to do well.
Report Comment
 
 
# RE: AMD Radeon HD 6990 Antilles Video CardAdam 2011-03-08 08:54
AMD's got some nice ideas there, but it's not exactly the most impressive card ever due to the numerous drawbacks.

The dual-bios switch is a pretty awesome idea even if the actual overclocking potential of the 6990 was a huge 'meh'.

I suppose these cards are never intended to be particularly sensible though and are aimed are that certain type of gamer (more money then sense, possibly).
Report Comment
 
 
# CrossFire in the modern worldBruceBruce 2011-03-08 09:12
There has been a dearth of mainstream motherboards with dual 16x PCI-Express connections lately. My 1156/i5 combo is a very cost-effective platform for gaming, but with high end cards, the 8X PCI-E connectivity starts to hit bandwidth limits. This card, as over-the-top as it may seem, is an excellent way to get the full performance of two 6970-class GPUs with one slot.

I know it seems ironic to talk about budget when we're discussing a $700 video card, but if I take the money I would have spent on an X58/LGA1366 motherboard and a top-of-the-heap CPU and put it towards the video card, I think it's a better bang for the $$$$.
Report Comment
 
 
# RE: CrossFire in the modern worldAdam 2011-03-08 09:49
I can see where you're coming from, but I dont think 1366 is expensive enough to justify buying the 6990 over a cheaper crossfire/Sli setup which will have comparable performance.

Another problem is, whilst high end cards are great fun and all that, they're currently redundant. Current PC games are becoming so heavily gimped by the console market that we're not seeing anything worth buying these parts for.
Having said that I've not played Crysis 2 yet, but it's a console port. Bleh.
Report Comment
 
 
# Not.Suhaib 2011-03-08 10:21
Crysis 2 isn't a console port, it was developed for PC from scratch, and it will support DX11 in the final release.
Report Comment
 
 
# RE: Not.MikeFunktastic 2011-03-09 04:51
Suhaib is correct. I don't know where people are getting their news from. Just because it's going to consoles doesn't mean it was PORTED from consoles. Crytek has stated multiple times that CryEngine3 was developed for the PC first, ported to consoles second.
Report Comment
 
 
# RE: Not.RagingShadow07 2011-03-09 08:05
Have you played the multiplayer demo? As soon as you start up the game, you're greeted by a "PRESS START TO CONTINUE" screen regardless of if you're on keyboard/mouse or controller (or were, I think they patched it). They pulled an Infinity Ward on Crysis 2. There's even an aim assistance option in the settings menu. If not for console, it was definitely designed for the controller, which, to me, is still showing how little most devs care about PC now.
Report Comment
 
 
# RE: RE: Not.Suhaib 2011-03-10 00:52
Is that your logic? have you ever considered people who prefer controllers in the PC consumer base?
RagingShadow, I suggest you wait until the game is released.
Report Comment
 
 
# RE: RE: RE: Not.Adam 2011-03-10 07:00
Do you honestly think that enough people use controllers for FPS's on the PC to justify them putting the default message as "press start to continue"? Really?
Report Comment
 
 
# What did you expect?Olle P 2011-03-09 02:19
In terms of overclocking I don't expect a 450W card to reach very high until some more efficient form of cooling is applied.

In this case I don't count the "What the lawyers make us say" setting at 830MHz 1.12V as the reference setting, but just a safe adaptation to get the card within the PCIe standards.

880MHz and 1.175V is the reference speed, and from there the card can be overclocked a bit. How much past 900MHz is still anybody's guess though...
Report Comment
 
 
# rip offtechman 2011-03-08 22:01
What a rip off.699.00 thats a hundred over the hd 5970 when it was released.The only reason it is this high, is the fact that there is no competitive card out there.An extra 2 gigs doesn't cost a hundred dollars.
Report Comment
 
 
# The price is right.Olle P 2011-03-09 02:22
The $700 is the price of a pair of 6970, which is essentially the equivalent but require more space, two more power cables and an extra PCIe slot.
Report Comment
 
 
# RE: The price is right.David Ramsey 2011-03-09 10:01
...and is faster, quieter, and gives you the option of starting with one 6970 and upgrading later. Aside from "fastest single graphics card" bragging rights, I really don't see the point to a card like this.
Report Comment
 
 
# Future proofMichael 2011-12-03 03:45
Its a card that will last a long time as a high end graphics card. Its a future proof card.
Report Comment
 
 
# Right PriceComputer Support 2011-03-09 23:38
Yes it is very expensive product
Report Comment
 
 
# RE: AMD Radeon HD 6990 Antilles Video CardSuhaib 2011-03-10 09:11
They fixed it with a patch, and they've also talked about crysis 2 shipping with DX9, and being patched later to DX11.

And almost all my friends and I use controllers when we feel like it.
Report Comment
 
 
# DnaAngelDnaAngel 2011-03-19 20:34
Adam makes a very Valid point with the Push start to continue message. Cytek can say this and say that but the game is obviously geared towards the Console market. As far as the card goes, weve seen this power struggle between Nvidia and Ati for years now. It is funny that Nvidia top 2 cards ATM have to be in SLI'd just to keep up. but soon as Nvidias 6xx series comes out then yep you guessed it balls back in Nvidia court again until Ati releases their 7xxx series. the pattern continues on. But not one person here can disagree that the PC gaming world IS being hindered one way shape or form of the badly aged current gen Console market.And until Microsoft/Sony and yes Nintendo release their next gen consoles PC gaming will be at a Tech crunch. and really until then these type are cards ARE redundant, with only a FPS gain, but a decent CPU and Crossfire/SLI setup is more then enough for even the newest of games at eye candy Resolution/Settings.
Report Comment
 
 
# BenchmarksMarko 2011-07-12 14:11
One thing that is good to know though, ONE 6990 os almost as good as TWO GTX580's. Wow, nVidia fanboys are gonna rage at this.
Report Comment
 

Comments have been disabled by the administrator.

Search Benchmark Reviews
QNAP Network Storage Servers

Follow Benchmark Reviews on FacebookReceive Tweets from Benchmark Reviews on Twitter