Product: Sapphire Radeon HD 6870 FleX
Company: AMD
Authour: James Prior
Editor: Charles Oliver
Date: March 10th, 2011
Package & Specifications

Sapphire
Sapphire
Sapphire's customary high-crush resistance packaging, made from 100% recyclable material, ensures your card arrives safe and sound. Included with the card is a utility CD, HDMI 1.4a cable, HDMI to DVI adapter, mini-DP to full-DP adapter, and a long Crossfire bridge. You also get a power adapters in case your PSU doesn't have 6-pin power connectors, having traveled in time from 2002 to your rig now.


A first glance you can see the cooler is non-reference, using a a large centrally located axial fan instead of the reference design's blower style fan. It looks very similar to Sapphire's VaporX cooler.


Lacking a rear blackplate, like reference HD 6870s, the rear mounted components are exposed. Four sprung screws secure the heatsink to the card, with two more screws holding down the VRM heatsink.


The AMD Radeon HD 6870 requires two 6-pin power inputs, despite an official TDP of 151W. The extra display adapter integrated into the FleX addition adds a whole watt of power. The power connectors are located side by side at the rear of the card, sideways mounted for easy connection.


The AMD Radeon HD 6870 reference design's output configuration is retained, with a half slot rear exhaust, two DVI outputs (white for single-link, black for dual-link), a HDMI output (1.4a compliant) and two mini-DisplayPort outputs. All five outputs can be used concurrently for 5-display Eyefinity configurations or, with DisplayPort 1.2 monitors or MST hubs, six displays can be connected. AMD HD3D for Stereoscopic gaming, picture viewing and Blu-ray 3D movie playback is supported with third party 3D driver from DDD or IZ3D, and a suitable HDMI 1.4a compliant display and glasses.


Beneath the plastic heat shroud hides a three copper heatpipe heatsink, with large 8mm pipes and wide-spaced aluminum fins running the length of the card.


The memory is arranged in the reference design L-shape around the GPU, with the VRMs to the rear. Sapphire uses their Black Diamond chokes to improve card longevity and power stability, in addition to the reference digital VRM design and 'solid' capacitors.


The Sapphire HD 6870 FleX's non-reference design means Sapphire's TriXX overclocking application is unable to adjust voltage, although does offer higher clock limits than AMD's Overdrive.



The heatsink mounts with rubberized foam pads to help prevent crush damage when over-tightening mounting screws. The base is copper but the heatpipes are not in direct contact with the GPU.


The central fan draws air in from the center of the shroud and exhausts at both ends of the card. This cools the RAM and VRMs as well as the GPU, thanks to the fin spacing on the heatsink.


Test Setup

To test the Sapphire Radeon HD 6870 FleX we used our Sapphire Pure Black X58 with overclocked Intel Core i7 920. Full specifications are below:

Test System Configuration
Test System Configuration

We tested the Sapphire HD 6870 Flex in 1920x1080 and 5760x1080 Eyefinity configurations, single and CrossfireX configuration.

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