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Written by Steve Hearst   
Wednesday, 09 November 2011
Table of Contents: Page Index
HIS Radeon HD 6870 IceQ Video Card
Closer Look: HIS Radeon HD 6870 IceQ 1GB
HIS Radeon HD 6870 IceQ 1GB Detailed Features
Features and Specifications
VGA Testing Methodology
DX10: 3DMark Vantage
DX10: Street Fighter IV
DX11: Aliens vs Predator
DX11: Battlefield Bad Company 2
DX11: BattleForge
DX11: Lost Planet 2
DX11: Tom Clancy's HAWX 2
DX11: Metro 2033
DX11: Unigine Heaven 2.1
HIS Radeon HD6870 IceQ 1GB Temperatures
VGA Power Consumption
HIS Radeon HD6870 IceQ 1GB Overclocking
Final Thoughts and Conclusion

HIS Radeon HD 6870 IceQ 1GB Video Card

Manufacturer: HIS Digital
Product Name: HIS 6870 IceQ 1GB GDDR5 PCI-E HDMI/2xDVI/2xMini DP
Model Number: H687Q1G2M
Price As Tested: $199.99 (NewEgg, Amazon)

Full Disclosure: The product sample used in this article has been provided by HIS.

The holiday season is fast approaching and there is still no official word on the next generation GPU's other than TSMC starting volume production. What does that mean? Well, it looks like we will be waiting until next year before any more new video cards from either camp are released. This stop gap between generations gives AIB partners a chance to tweak and perfect their designs and introduce some different models to keep the market active.

Today Benchmark Reviews will be looking at the HIS Radeon HD6870 IceQ 1GB, a modern video card with a classic HIS design. As aftermarket designs go, this looks like a real beast of a card but there is no factory overclock on this model. The cooler is a mixture of the HIS IceQ X fin array and a shroud that looks similar to a reference card shroud with a twist. HIS have dubbed the radial fan a 'Black Hole Impeller' because it is able to draw in air from both sides as it is raised slightly from the PCB. The main question is what difference will this make to operating temperatures and overclocking potential; and that is exactly what we intend to find out.

HIS_Radeon_HD6870_IceQ_Intro_600.jpg

A lot of people are speculating that the PC and PC gaming industry is dying but I beg to differ. I think the Tablet/Smartphone era is just a novelty phase. One problem lies with power delivery, and we all know that today's batteries just don't cut it when we want to use our devices for extended periods (as demonstrated beautifully by the iPhone 4S). No matter how many unique apps or games are available, it is all for nothing if you can't run them for more than a few hours before you need to recharge. Then there is the problem of size, scale and control; these devices once again are not going to cut it unless they evolve to become more like a PC. So here we are again, back at square one with the faithful old PC. Don't even get me started on consoles. Enough with the rambling, let's get on with the review, shall we.



 

Comments 

 
# RE: HIS Radeon HD 6870 IceQ Video CardSun Down 2011-11-09 22:31
Great review of the card. Honestly, the name already gives away on how much it could be overclocked, you could use an air conditioner to push the card further. On your first point, saying the PC gaming is dead is like saying that every scientist in the world is dead. We're the pioneers of interactive graphics.
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# RE: RE: HIS Radeon HD 6870 IceQ Video CardWhyNotV2 2011-11-17 03:37
Sun Down, he wasn't saying he believed PC gaming was dead, read the whole statement...

"A lot of people are speculating that the PC and PC gaming industry is dying but I beg to differ. I think the Tablet/Smartphone era is just a novelty phase. One problem lies with power delivery, and we all know that today's batteries just don't cut it when we want to use our devices for extended periods..."

Nowhere did he say that he himself agreed and actually said he disagreeed.
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# InfoChris 2012-01-17 11:13
I have this motherboard:
##gigabyte.com/products/product-page.aspx?pid=1928#sp

I wanted to put this graphics card on my system with full 4gb of RAM. I already updated the bios system to hande 2.1 PCIe. Would it work on my motherboard? How would it run if so?

Thank you
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# RE: InfoSteven Iglesias-Hearst 2012-01-17 11:28
Your motherboard is fine and this card will run as it is intended to on it. Just make sure your PC case has enough room and that your power supply can handle the extra load.
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# RE: RE: InfoChris 2012-01-17 16:08
Thanks Steven. Yeah I want to build a new pc but don't have the cash at the moment so I was looking into a new graphics card for now.
I was thinking about this HIS ice 6870 or this:
##newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16814102924
Which would you prefer? Or what other card would you consider?
Thanks
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# RE: RE: RE: InfoSteven Iglesias-Hearst 2012-01-18 16:32
The Sapphire card is OK buddy although it is $10 more. Maybe consider looking at some NVIDIA cards too - GTX 560, GTX 560Ti or GTX 560Ti 448
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# okChris 2012-01-18 17:11
Thanks. I took your advice and looked into the Nvidia cards.
This is what I found that I think would go well:
##newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16814127608
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# not a bad time...Pinakio 2011-11-10 14:41
Great review from BMR as usual, keep'em coming! Despite what most people say, this is good time for upgrading GPUs. The price has reached a level of tranquility and is quite reasonable than ever and we've a pretty good idea of the performance that we can expect from both camps. Surely one can wait for GCN (SI/Kepler) but that ain't happening before 2012 as we all now know. But what we have in the market is proven GPUs with custom designs like this one and MSI TwinFrozr II/III, which are great for OCing and bang for $$. These AIBs are doing a great job of making innovative and effective designs and they should not be afraid of dishing out some significant amount of factory OC. Also considering the number of big tittles that are to be released like BF3, MW3 and Skyrim- we shall see a surge in the sells of discrete GPUs!
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# Voltage ControlChris 2011-11-17 12:32
That is an awesome overclock for not bumping the voltage. I'd love to see if you have control over this and see if you can get an even higher overclock. You can use ATI Tray Tools to get past the 1Ghz limit and you can punch in your own voltage. I have a pair of Vision#s and they will not allow you over mess with the voltage at all. Not even at the Bios level.
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# RE: Voltage ControlSteven Iglesias-Hearst 2011-11-17 13:23
I bumped the voltage to 1.3V to get that overclock and I was able to get past the 1GHz barrier by using the unofficial overclocking method whereby you modify the MSIafterburner.cfg to give more headroom. For all my efforts I couldn't get it stable beyond 1GHz. This was written in black and white in the overclocking chapter of this article.

"More overclocking headroom could be unlocked for the GPU Core and Memory speeds using the unofficial overclocking method in MSI Afterburner, but I wasn't able to keep this card stable during testing when I went past the previous limits. I bumped the vCore to the max 1.30V and was able to push the clock speeds to 1000MHz GPU and 1250MHz (5GHz effective) Memory and still remain stable during the benchmarking run."
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# This card awesomeTrevor 2011-12-01 21:28
This card is awesome... I don't need to overclock it at all... everything is good excepted it is big for my mid tower
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# InfoHurricane 2012-09-12 04:47
I have this motherboard
#in.asus.com/Motherboards/Intel_Socket_1155/P8H67M_LX/

and wanted to know whether this graphics card would work on it .So will it work ?
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# YesBruce 2012-09-12 06:57
Why would you think that it wouldn't? Just curious....
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# RE: InfoAthlonite 2012-09-12 17:27
as long as your Mother board has an x16 slot it will work even if that slot only runs at x4 speeds it'll still work
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