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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

VGA Testing Methodology

The Microsoft DirectX-11 graphics API is native to the Microsoft Windows 7 Operating System, and will be the primary O/S for our test platform. DX11 is also available as a Microsoft Update for the Windows Vista O/S, so our test results apply to both versions of the Operating System. The majority of benchmark tests used in this article are comparative to DX11 performance, however some high-demand DX10 tests have also been included.

According to the Steam Hardware Survey published for the month ending April 2011, the most popular gaming resolution is 1920x1080 with 1680x1050 hot on its heels, our benchmark performance tests concentrate on these higher-demand resolutions: 1.76MP 1680x1050 and 2.07MP 1920x1080 (22-24" widescreen LCD monitors), as they are more likely to be used by high-end graphics solutions, such as those tested in this article.

In each benchmark test there is one 'cache run' that is conducted, followed by five recorded test runs. Results are collected at each setting with the highest and lowest results discarded. The remaining three results are averaged, and displayed in the performance charts on the following pages.

A combination of synthetic and video game benchmark tests have been used in this article to illustrate relative performance among graphics solutions. Our benchmark frame rate results are not intended to represent real-world graphics performance, as this experience would change based on supporting hardware and the perception of individuals playing the video game.

HIS_Radeon_HD6870_IceQ_GPU-Z_Main.jpg

Intel P55 Test System

DirectX-10 Benchmark Applications

  • 3DMark Vantage v1.02
    • Extreme Settings: (Extreme Quality, 8x Multisample Anti-Aliasing, 16x Anisotropic Filtering, 1:2 Scale)
  • Street Fighter IV Benchmark
    • Extreme Settings: (Very High Quality, 8x AA, 16x AF, Parallel rendering On, Shadows High)

DirectX-11 Benchmark Applications

  • Aliens vs Predator
    • Extreme Settings: (Very High Quality, 4x AA, 16x AF, SSAO, Tessellation, Advanced Shadows)
  • BattleField: Bad Company 2
    • Extreme Settings: (Highest Quality, HBAO, 8x AA, 16x AF, 180s Fraps Single-Player Intro Scene)
  • BattleForge v1.2
    • Extreme Settings: (Very High Quality, 8x Anti-Aliasing, Auto Multi-Thread)
  • Lost Planet 2
    • Extreme Settings: (2x AA, Low Shadow Detail, High Texture, High Render, High DirectX 11 Features)
  • Tom Clancy's HAWX 2 Benchmark 1.0.4
    • Extreme Settings: (Maximum Quality, 8x AA, 16x AF, DX11 Terrain Tessellation)
  • Metro 2033
    • Extreme Settings: (Very-High Quality, AAA, 16x AF, Advanced DoF, Tessellation, 180s Fraps Chase Scene)
  • Unigine Heaven Benchmark 2.1
    • Extreme Settings: (High Quality, Normal Tessellation, 16x AF, 4x AA)

Video Card Test Products

Graphics Card Radeon
HD6850
GeForce
GTX 460 (OC)
HIS Radeon
HD6870 IceQ 1GB
HIS Radeon
HD6870 X Turbo X
GeForce
GTX 560Ti
Radeon
HD6950
GPU Cores 960 336 1120 1120 384 1408
Core Clock (MHz) 775 715 900 975 822 800
Shader Clock (MHz) N/A 1430 N/A N/A 1645 N/A
Memory Clock (MHz) 1000 900 1050 1150 1002 1250
Memory Amount 1024MB GDDR5 1024MB GDDR5 1024MB GDDR5 1024MB GDDR5 1024MB GDDR5 2048MB GDDR5
Memory Interface 256-bit 256-bit 256-bit 256-bit 256-bit 256-bit
  • AMD Radeon HD6850 (775 MHz GPU/1000 MHz vRAM - AMD Catalyst Driver 11.9)
  • NVIDIA GeForce GTX460 (715 MHz GPU/1430 MHz Shader/900 MHz vRAM - Forceware 285.62)
  • AMD HIS Radeon HD6870 IceQ 1GB (900 MHz GPU/1050 MHz vRAM - AMD Catalyst Driver 11.9)
  • AMD HIS Radeon HD6870 IceQ X Turbo X (975 MHz GPU/1150 MHz vRAM - AMD Catalyst Driver 11.9)
  • NVIDIA GeForce GTX 560Ti (822 MHz GPU/1645 MHz Shader/1002 MHz vRAM - Forceware 285.62)
  • AMD HIS Radeon HD6950 IceQ X Turbo X (880 MHz GPU/1300 MHz vRAM - AMD Catalyst Driver 11.9)


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    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.
    Report Comment
     
     
    # 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.
    Report Comment
     
     
    # 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
    Report Comment
     
     
    # 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.
    Report Comment
     
     
    # 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
    Report Comment
     
     
    # 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
    Report Comment
     
     
    # 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
    Report Comment
     
     
    # 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!
    Report Comment
     
     
    # 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.
    Report Comment
     
     
    # 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."
    Report Comment
     
     
    # 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
    Report Comment
     
     
    # 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 ?
    Report Comment
     
     
    # YesBruce 2012-09-12 06:57
    Why would you think that it wouldn't? Just curious....
    Report Comment
     
     
    # 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
    Report Comment
     

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