Gigabyte Radeon HD 5870 SOC (Super Overclock) Review

Honest conclusion of the reviewer! Just for your information: from the HWBOT database we have gathered information on the overclocking capabilities of both MSI Lightning and GIGABYTE Super Overclock HD 5870. On average, both cards clock 100MHz higher than a reference HD 5870. On air cooling, however, the difference is just non-existent ... go for the cheapest one if you just run air.

So this really turns into a question of value. I’m going to make some generalizations here that some of you may disagree with, but this is how I see it and if you want to know how I would want to spend my hard earned money, here it is. With reference cards selling for less than $400 these days, the Gigabyte SOC card commands a $100+ premium. If a reference card can be expected to reach 900MHz core and 1300MHz memory, and a Gigabyte SOC card can be expected to hit 1000MHz core and 1350MHz memory, then the question becomes this: “Is the Gigabyte SOC worth a 25% increase in price for about a 10% increase in performance?” My answer, no! The overclocker in me is even more convinced. These cards were not binned with extreme cooling, so they are not necessarily going to be good overclocking cards on LN2. I only tested one of the two with LN2, but even if the 2nd one was amazing on LN2, the fact still remains that there is no guarantee of top shelf overclockability with extreme cooling. So again, if it was my money, I’d go for the best priced 5870 available and push it as far as you can!


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Belgium Massman says:

FYI, we didn't include the Matrix/Vapor-X/etc card in the chart because the test sample is too small/

United States steponz says:

Can't agree with you more mass.. For the LN2 gpu guys.. its almost a must though.. My lightning is a pretty sweet card.. but really only on LN2... For air.. not that great... But the whole purpose was for Ln2... so a win for me...

TaPaKaH says:

What's the distribution of GPU clocks on each model? Theoretically, you can be better off buying 35-40% more reference cards to bin.

Belgium Massman says:

steponz said: Can't agree with you more mass.. For the LN2 gpu guys.. its almost a must though.. My lightning is a pretty sweet card.. but really only on LN2... For air.. not that great... But the whole purpose was for Ln2... so a win for me...


?

air = buy cheapest reference
ln2 = need for custom pcb design

=> we agree?

Sam OCX said: What's the distribution of GPU clocks on each model? Theoretically, you can be better off buying 35-40% more reference cards to bin.


Good question! I'll look it up if I find the time.

United States steponz says:

Yes we agree Mass...

LN2, The custom design is a huge benefit.
Air, Doesn't really matter.. I had 4 reference cards that had better air clocks then my Lightning...

Belgium Massman says:

Btw, has anyone ever tried the reference cooler on a custom PCB design?

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