AMD Radeon HD 6990 4 GB Review: Antilles Makes (Too Much) Noise

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CrazeEAdrian

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Great job AMD. You need to expect noise and heat when dealing with a card that beasts out that kind of performance, it's part of the territory.
 

jprahman

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This thing is a monster, 375W TDP, 4GB of VRAM! Some people don't even have 4GB of regular RAM in their systems, let alone on their video card.
 

one-shot

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Did I miss the load power draw? I just noticed the idle and noise ratings. It would be informative to see the power draw of Crossfire 6990s and overclocked i7. I see the graph, but a chart with CPU only and GPU only followed by a combination of both would be nice to see.
 

anacandor

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For the people that actually buy this card, i'm sure they'll be able to afford an aftermarket cooler for this thing once they come out...
 

cangelini

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[citation][nom]one-shot[/nom]Did I miss the load power draw? I just noticed the idle and noise ratings. It would be informative to see the power draw of Crossfire 6990s and overclocked i7. I see the graph, but a chart with CPU only and GPU only followed by a combination of both would be nice to see.[/citation]

We don't have two cards here to test, unfortunately. The logged load results for a single card are on the same page, though!
 

bombat1994

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things we need to see are this thing water cooled.

and tested at 7680 x 1600

that will see just how well it does.

That thing is an absolute monster of a card.

They really should have made it 32nm. then the power draw would have fallen below 300w and the thing would be cooler.

STILL NICE WORK AMD
 

Bigmac80

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Pretty fast i wonder if this will be cheaper then 2 GTX 570's or 2 6950's?
But omg this thing is freakin loud. What's the point of having a quite system now with Noctua fans :(
 

lashton

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[citation][nom]bombat1994[/nom]things we need to see are this thing water cooled.and tested at 7680 x 1600that will see just how well it does.That thing is an absolute monster of a card.They really should have made it 32nm. then the power draw would have fallen below 300w and the thing would be cooler.STILL NICE WORK AMD[/citation]
That maybe possible when they get 28nm ready on bulldozer, they are just raping the rewards of old tech.
 

scrumworks

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Starts with negative comments (noise), so no surprises from Chris. Fermi of course never made so much noise and consume so much power that would require this type commenting. Everything was Power, PhysX and CUDA!
 

4745454b

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Meh. To much for what it is. The only thing it does better then two 6970s is in power. (if one 6970 is 250W and this is 375W, then it uses less power then 2x6970.) But I agree that you're better off with a CF setup. Like the GTX480 and possibly the GTX580, its simply to much for what you pay for.

Edit: I should say its either to much or to little and always in the wrong way for what you pay for. I also dislike the the 375W TDP. We have specs/rules for a reason.
 

Haserath

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I think AMD will have the performance monster this round. It would be surprising if Nvidia was anticipating something like this. The GTX 570 already uses quite a few more Watts than the 6970; what will they do to match two 6970's on one board?
This is isanity!
 
OMFG!!!!

Well, I guess if you were thinking of running 3, or even 6 displays (which would require at least one hub or daisy chain monitor), this is the card you would want, perhaps even two of them. I'm guessing if you put two of them in you really really want it water cooled.
 
Well at least it is cheaper than the two 7900gtx duos (eom) that landed some years after introduction. Personally I wouldn't purchase this card knowing the driver bugs and the usual issues that dual gpu cards have except I'll wait a few years to snatch one up on the cheap as a collectors item. For those who got the money wait at least two or three weeks for reviews and complaints by owners of this card before you buy one. I can live with the noise but bad drivers I can't.
 

cangelini

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[citation][nom]scrumworks[/nom]Starts with negative comments (noise), so no surprises from Chris. Fermi of course never made so much noise and consume so much power that would require this type commenting. Everything was Power, PhysX and CUDA![/citation]

LOL. Look at the power AND noise graphs, scrum :)
 

dragonsqrrl

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It looks like the improved CrossFireX scaling introduced with the HD6000 series really helps the HD6990 shine. There's no question about it, this thing's a top of the line performance beast.

The big (and really inexcusable) problem is the noise, and to a lesser extent power consumption. It's by far the loudest single card stock cooler ever conceived, and that's taking into account the former champions, the GTX480 and HD5970. The load temps aren't great, but they're acceptable in my opinion. I'm not sure what people were expecting, but this is an extreme high-end dual GPU card, and load temps in the upper 80's C aren't uncommon in this performance segment. The problem is once again the excessive noise that's generated in order to keep the 2 GPU's running at those already high temps.

I totally agree with the reviewer, the HD6990 seems rushed, the drivers are buggy, and if running a fan at 3k+ RPM is the only way to keep a card operating, it probably needs a little more tweaking before release.

[citation][nom]lashton[/nom]That maybe possible when they get 28nm ready on bulldozer, they are just raping the rewards of old tech.[/citation]
Bulldozer will be manufactured using Global Foundries 32nm process, not 28. The node shrink you're referring to for next-gen GPU's will be manufactured using a completely different 28nm process at TSMC. AMD uses Golbal Foundries only for its CPU's at this time.
 

dragonsqrrl

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[citation][nom]scrumworks[/nom]Starts with negative comments (noise), so no surprises from Chris. Fermi of course never made so much noise and consume so much power that would require this type commenting. Everything was Power, PhysX and CUDA![/citation]
scrumworks... you never fail to amaze and impress...
 

User69

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I think the 6990 is not properly supported by a stable driver yet. Hopefully heat/power will become easier to manage with a fine-tuned driver. Other graphic card makers will design the card with quieter operation, offer voltage-tweaking with the excess headroom. This card will become an attractive offer with the above tweaks and a $625-650 price tag.
 

silky salamandr

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Just came from youtube watching overclock3d's review on the card. He did a crossfire review also and said that he would never recommend this card just because the fan noise alone(I owned a 480 so I know a little something about fan noise). Also said that microstutter on the crossfire setup was crazy.

Nice card tho. I would just opt for to 6970's. Cheaper,faster, and cooler so I really dont know where this card fits in.

Not ready for prime time in its reference form at all.
 
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