Review Index:

AMD Radeon HD 6970 and 6950 Review - The Cayman Architecture Revealed

Author: Ryan Shrout
Manufacturer: AMD

Testing Configurations and System Setup


Incorrect specs on the HD 6970

Incorrect specs on the HD 6950

Obviously our copy of GPU-Z was having some issues with some of the basic specs on the HD 6900 series of cards but some of the details are correct: clock speeds, memory size, etc.   By the time you are reading this an updated version is likely already available. 

For today's review we are going to be comparing the new HD 6900-series of graphics cards against the best both sides have to offer.  The retail price on the Radeon HD 6970 will be $369 so one grouping is as follows:

  • Radeon HD 6970 2GB - $369
  • Radeon HD 5870 2GB - $349
  • GeForce GTX 570 1.25GB - $349
  • GeForce GTX 580 1.5GB - $509

While I realize that the GTX 580 is out of the price range of the new HD 6970 I wanted to show how the top single GPU technologies from both companies compared.  For the Radeon HD 6950 we have the following:

  • Radeon HD 6950 2GB - $299
  • Radeon HD 5850 1GB - $259
  • GeForce GTX 470 1.25GB - $249
  • GeForce GTX 570 1.25GB - $349

The Radeon HD 6950 is all alone at that $300 price point but it is surrounded by two worth NVIDIA options at $50 lower, and $50 higher price tags.  It will be interesting to see how they stack up. 

I am also including another set of graphs that will look at CrossFireX scaling for both the HD 6970 and HD 6950 cards as well as how the HD 6900 and HD 6800 series of GPUs scaling in price and performance. 

You will likely also notice a completely new
benchmark suite on PC Perspective - we have needed a refresh for quite
some time and we finally got it.  Unfortunately for us that mean 40+
hours of benchmarking; for you that means much more current and relevant

Here is our test system setup for the benchmarks:

  • Testing Configuration
  • ASUS P6X58D Premium Motherboard
  • Intel Core i7-965 @ 3.33 GHz Processor
  • 3 x 2GB Corsair DDR3-1333 MHz Memory
  • Western Digital VelociRaptor 600GB HDD
  • Corsair Professional Series 1200w PSU
  • Benchmarks used: 3DMark Vantage, Unigine Heaven v2.1, Metro
    2033, Lost Planet 2, Civilization V, F1 2010, Bad Company 2, Left 4 Dead
    2, 3DMark11
Let's get to it!

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