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The HIS Radeon 6850 1GB
The box for the HIS Radeon 6850 1GB follows the format of previous HIS card of late. It's designed to stand upright, is quite compact and has an easily recognizable style. Excalibur and prominent features are on the front while the rear details exactly what you're getting.
Inside, a gray box holds all the contents, with a tray above the card holding all the extras. Like all HIS packaging of late, the packaging is all completely recyclable.
Included with the HIS Radeon 6850 1GB is a single CrossfireX Bridge connector, a DVI to VGA adapter, two PCIe 6x to 2 Molex power adapters and a small folder with the Driver disk and a case badge.
The card itself is reminiscent of the older 5xxx series and the 60's Batmobile styling, however things are now much squarer. Naturally, the HIS Excalibur sword and artwork adorns the top of the shroud.
The black shroud covers a radial heat-sink and fan assembly, in a combination of aluminum and copper heat-pipes. A single red fan with the HIS logo sits center right above the GPU and inside the heat-sink. The sides of the shroud are grilled all the way along the visible side allowing plenty of air movement for the HSF underneath.
At the rear of the card we find a single PCIe power connector. The 6850 doesn't require much power at all considering the performance.
Flipping the card over, we can see that the usual mounting bracket has been used. There is no ram chips on this side, everything is under the shroud. You will also notice the single CrossfireX header.
Just to give you an idea of the size of the card, here is a shot of it in my case, compared against the motherboard width. As you can see, the HIS Radeon 6850 1GB sits about an inch shorter than the motherboard.
The IO plate features two DVI sockets, a regular sized HDMI and a regular sized DisplayPort. As mentioned before, only one of the DVI ports is Dual Link.
NB: Some sites have discovered that they have a non standard 6850. As noted above in GPU-z, ours is standard and correct.
Test Setup: Intel Core i5 750 @ 3.8GHz, 4GB of Crucial Ballistix Tracer Ram @ 1600MHz, MSI P55-GD65, Silicon Power M10 32GB + Western Digital 640GB, Custom CPU Watercooling, Hiper Type M 730w PSU, Cooler Master Cosmos S Case. All latest drivers as of October 2010 and the OS is Windows 7 64bit.
For comparison, we are testing against a default clocked NVIDIA GTX 460 1GB card.
Left 4 Dead 2 - Recording a custom demo on the Dead Center, Hotel level (inside in the inferno), we used FRAPS to record frame rates as we played back the demo on all cards at same settings.
Assassin's Creed 2 – The second of our DirectX 9 games, we tested by climbing a tower repeatedly in the Venice, San Polo – Rialto Bridge area and taking a leap of faith to the hay below 3 times. FRAPS was used to record frame-rates and the cards were set to the highest possible for each card.
Batman Arkham Asylum – We used a combination of the in game benchmark and FRAPS to gather our numbers for this game. All cards were set to the highest possible settings for that card.
Crysis Warhead – We used the Framebuffer benchmark tool to run through the Ambush demo and recorded the results with FRAPS. Settings for each card were set to highest possible for that card.
Aliens vs. Predator Benchmark – Using a DirectX11 engine, this benchmark provides a nice repeatable test combined with FRAPS. Settings for each card were set to default benchmark settings at our chosen resolution.
Colin McRae's DiRT2 - DiRT2 has some very good looking visuals and provides us with another DirectX 11 test. We used FRAPS with the games inbuilt benchmark to test a quick run around a London track.
S.T.A.L.K.E.R: Call of Pripyat Benchmark – Our third DX11 test uses a combination of FRAPS and the Ray portion of the benchmark. Cards were set to highest possible for each card.
– A popular way of testing your graphics, and useful for stress testing while overclocking. We used the Performance benchmark to give us a synthetic score.