The Sapphire RX 6950 XT Nitro+ Pure boasts some of the fastest non-ray tracing results we've ever seen. Technically the RTX 3090 Ti still wins at 4K ultra, but 1080p and 1440p go to AMD, for a bit more than half the cost of Nvidia's latest tour de force. The main drawback is that AMD's RDNA 3 architecture should arrive before the end of the year, providing even better performance and features.
But the 200 mark is currently the sweetspot between price and performance, and the AMD Radeon HD 6950 is the king of that particular roost thanks to its sterling performance and for the fact you can wave your magic BIOS flashing wand and transform it into a AMD Radeon HD 6970 gratis.
What the MSI card is doing though is operating 25% cooler than the stock card. That's still no help in terms of HD 6950 overclocking, but if you took the risk and flashed the card's BIOS you stand a decent chance of clocking it well over 900MHz.
When AMD launched the HD 6000 series graphic cards, they left a gap in its lineup. The Barts GPU core that gave us the HD 6850 and HD 6870 occupies the $150-$200 price range while the Cayman gave us the HD 6950 and HD 6970, occupying the $300-$350 range. Up till recently, AMD had no card at the $250 price range. However, NVIDIA revamped the Fermi architecture with the GeForce 500 series, and launched the GTX 560 Ti to fill that slot. To compete against NVIDIA at this price point, AMD sliced the memory on the HD 6950 in half and launched the 1GB HD 6950, keeping the rest of the architecture the same.
Here we can also see the CrossFireX connectors are covered as well. Good attention to detail from MSI. The HD 6950 supports 2-way and 3-way CrossFireX to provide the power needed for gaming at insane resolutions.
At 19201080 resolution, the extra 1GB of memory does not have that much impact for the HD 6950. The HD 6950 Twin Frozr III is about 8% faster here. Even when we crank up the tessellation, in Heaven 2.5, the system is still bottlenecked by the processing power and not the amount of memory.
Under the extreme preset, which tests at resolution 19201080 with 4xMSAA, 16AF, heavy tessellation, and other high visual settings such as shadow and lighting, the extra memory on the HD 6950 2GB shows a 10% benefit over the 1GB MSI card.
Idle, the MSI card runs at 7C cooler than the reference card. Under load the card runs at an impressive 67C, almost 20C cooler than our reference HD 6950. Even when we flip to Silence mode, the card still is 12C cooler than the reference card. Keep in mind that the card is already factory-overclocked so this is very impressive.
Remember, we disabled the PowerPlay power management on the HD 6950, which will push the GPU to the maximum load without throttling. This will give us the worst case scenario. If AMD PowerPlay is enabled, the power consumption and the clockspeed will throttle up and down depending on the load, and the noise level may not be as bad. Still, we not only heard the fan noise in Furmark with the PowerPlay disabled, but also when we tested the card in tests like S.T.A.L.K.E.R. and Heaven, so the MSI card is definitely louder than the reference card.
The MSI card consumes a few watts more power than the reference HD 6950. It consumes 2 more watts of power idle and 5 more watts under load. The difference is so small that it should not require a larger PSU.
With the Twin Frozr III, we were able to push the card to 925 MHz core and 1375 MHz memory, up from 850MHz core and 1300 MHz at default voltages. The card passed the burn-in test and we believe that there is additional headroom to push the voltage a little bit more. We are sure that with the right amount of time, the card can be pushed to 1000 MHz without much issue. Still, the core and memory are already 125 MHz/175 MHz faster than the reference HD 6950, so the result is not too shabby.
We can see that for HD 6950, there is virtually no performance difference between the 1GB and 2GB of memory until we start to enable many DirectX 11 visual settings such as DOF, tessellation, and others. We are pretty sure that the majority of the gamers out there play games at a resolution of 19201080, so the extra memory is not going to be as important as the GPU power. Granted, the extra memory will have an impact at 25601600 or larger, or running an Eyefinity setup.
Overall, we also liked the design of this card. The factory overclock makes the card perform about 5-6% faster than the reference HD 6950 (2GB). The Twin Frozr III cooler does a good job at keeping the card running cool but unfortunately, the noise level is not as quiet as we would have liked. Luckily because of the cooling performance, there is a plenty of headroom for overclocking if users can find the right tool that is able to push the GPU and memory speed.
Combining the high quality 6+2 power, Military Class II components, and the easy to use MSI Afterburner software, the MSI R6950 Twin Frozr III 1GB/OC is a good choice for users on the market for a custom design HD 6950 1GB. Additionally, MSI warrants the card for three years, which should be enough to give users peace of mind while enjoying the extra 5-10% performance delivered by the factory overclock.
Designed for those who want a one-stop upgrade for your USB 3.0 or USB-C laptop. The Plugable USB 3.0 Dual 4K Docking Station (UD-6950) allows you to add dual DisplayPort monitors, and connect your peripherals, all through a single cable back to your laptop. Quickly come and go from your desk with ease. By connecting one cable to your laptop, you gain 12 extra ports of connectivity, making it easier to do more work in less time.
Power users with DisplayPort monitors: The UD-6950 is the dock you need to maximize your productivity and your workspace. Great for business uses such as email, web applications, Microsoft office, and more. Featuring a vertical design, you can easily slip this dock between your monitors and save valuable desk space. Conveniently access the front USB and audio ports for those devices you plug and unplug everyday.
Note: The UD-6950 will not charge your laptop and will need your external charger to provide power to your system. It also does not have any HDMI ports to connect to an additional monitor. You can connect to HDMI, VGA, or DVI displays with the purchase of a DisplayPort adapter.
Examples of Plugable products based on DisplayLink technology are the UD-3900, UD-6950Z, or USBC-6950U. Any Plugable product based on DisplayLink technology will have a 'DisplayLink' logo printed somewhere on the product. If a Plugable product does not have this logo, then it does not use DisplayLink technology.
Comme Sapphire, HIS prépare la sortie d'une version 1 Go de la Radeon HD 6950 d'AMD, alors que le modèle de référence fait appel à 2 Go. Une solution qui doit permettre d'abaisser légèrement le prix de vente de ces cartes... pour mieux faire face à l'arrivée prochaine des GeForce GTX 560 153554b96e