MSI has today come out with a new addition to its Hawk series of graphics cards with the R6870 GPU. Based on the Radeon HD 6870 reference board, the R6870 Hawk card carries forward the legacy of the series that has become quite popular among enthusiasts and overclockers.
The new offering boasts of a custom PCB and an all new cooling solution that promises to make the card a high performance one. Talking of the PCB, it has been custom designed with an 8+2 phase power design, which is effectively double the one available on the reference card. MSI has also equipped it with active phase switching (APS) for automatic phase control and loaded all ferrite chokes and solid capacitors for extended life.
The cooling solution, which is an advanced version of MSI’s award winning Twin Frozr II technology, is driven by a large heatsink that covers the entire card and dissipates the heat generated by the graphics core using five heatpipes. Off the five heatpipes, two are MSI’s proprietary SuperPipes with 8mm diameter. The base of the heatsink is nickel plated copper, while airflow is created by two 80mm fans crafted with MSI’s Propeller blade technology for maximum airflow. MSI claims are as much as 7 dBA quieter than the reference design. According to MSI, the custom cooler should keep the card running 21 degrees cooler than the original from AMD.
Coming to the clock speeds, MSI has factory overclocked the card to 930MHz (not a great hike), with the memory set to run at 1050MHz. The card has 1120 stream processors, 56 texturing units, 32 ROPs, and a 256-bit memory interface. To make it easier for enthusiasts to track their cards’ details, MSI has provided integrated read points on the card from where voltage can be measured easily. While AMD’s reference design comes with over current protection (OCP) technology, the R6870 will allow users to disable it for drawing maximum juice out of the card.
The MSI R6870 Hawk has started shipping to retailers and is priced at €253 in Europe. Pricing in other regions is not yet known.
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