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Performance Summary

Here is a table with the detailed test results for your reference:

 

Let's now examine summary diagrams.

The diagrams show average frame rates only. The first one indicates how fast the dual-processor Radeon HD 6870X2 is in comparison with an ordinary Radeon HD 6870.

The dual-processor card is up to 100% faster than its single-processor cousin across most tests. The gap is small in but a few games: StarCraft II: Wings of Liberty, Lost Planet 2 and the FSAA-less modes of S.T.A.L.K.E.R.: Call of Pripyat and Metro 2033: The Last Refuge.

The next diagram compares two similarly priced products, PowerColor Radeon HD 6870X2 and GeForce GTX 580, the latter’s performance being the baseline.

Save for Lost Planet 2 and the FSAA mode of StarCraft II: Wings of Liberty, the PowerColor is faster than its rival, enjoying a very large advantage in such games as Just Cause 2, Aliens vs. Predator (2010), Total War: Shogun 2 and Sid Meier's Civilization V. The average advantage across all the tests is 25%.

Here are a few more diagrams that might be interesting to you. The next one compares the PowerColor Radeon HD 6870X2 with the SLI configuration built out of two GeForce GTX 560s:

And this is a comparison of the single Radeon HD 6870 (900/4200 MHz) with the single GeForce GTX 560 (870/4080 MHz):

Here is the GeForce GTX 560 SLI configuration compared to the GeForce GTX 580:

There’s no need to comment on these results except that two GeForce GTX 560s are going to cost you some 20% less than one GeForce GTX 560.

Conclusion

The PowerColor Radeon HD 6870X2 is a unique product that delivers high performance. Despite some minor problems with the minimal speed, the dual-processor card from PowerColor left no chance to the Nvidia GeForce GTX 580 in our tests. Most importantly, the PowerColor Radeon HD 6870X2 costs as much as reference GeForce GTX 580s and is expected to get even cheaper eventually. The card's cooling system, even though not perfect, copes with its job with less noise than the GTX 580's reference cooler. Besides, the Lucid HydraLogix chip allows combining the PowerColor card with any Nvidia-based product into a single subsystem to get even higher performance. Added to that are awesome accessories, nice-looking packaging and a 2-year warranty.

We can note that two reference AMD Radeon HD 6870s are going to cost you no more than $360 today, yet they would require a mainboard with two fully-functional PCI Express x16 slots (which are unavailable on the popular LGA1155 platform). They would need more power cables and would produce more noise. So, the PowerColor Radeon HD 6870X2 is quite a competitive product and we are now waiting for Nvidia's response like a dual-chip GeForce GTX 560 Ti “X2” priced at about $400 and equipped with a low-noise cooler. It might be yet another bestseller if it ever comes out.

 
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