We’re already familiar with Sapphire’s exclusive Dual-X cooler. It consists of an aluminum heatsink, four copper heat pipes and a plastic casing with two fans.
The heatsink is made of slim aluminum fins soldered to the heat pipes.
The two middle heat pipes are 6 millimeters in diameter. The outermost pipes are 8 millimeters.
A metallic frame with thermal pads cools the power system components and memory chips.
There are two 90mm fans installed in the plastic casing:
The marking “FirstD FD7010H” suggested that these are 70mm fans, yet my caliper rule didn’t agree.
The speed of the fans is PWM-regulated from 1110 to 3330 RPM. The peak power draw of the fans is specified to be no higher than 4.2 watts.
We checked out the card’s temperature while running Aliens vs. Predator (2010) five times with the highest image quality settings (2560x1440, with 16x anisotropic filtering but without antialiasing):
We used MSI Afterburner 2.2.2 and GPU-Z 0.6.3 as monitoring tools. This test was carried inside a closed system case at an ambient temperature of 25°C. All thermal tests were performed before we took the card apart, i.e. with its default thermal interface still intact.
Let’s once again check the Sapphire Dual-X out in the automatic fan regulation mode and at the maximum speed (we use the faster BIOS version with clock rates of 1050/5000 MHz for this test).
Automatic fan mode
Max fan speed
With the fans being regulated automatically, the GPU temperature was 65°C and the speed of the fans was 2020 RPM. At the maximum speed of 3330 RPM the temperature wasn’t higher than 58°C. These are better results than those of the earlier tested Sapphire Radeon HD 7870 OC that had the same cooler and clock rates (70°C at the automatic 2230 RPM and 62°C at the maximum 3500 RPM). This may be due to the reinforced PCB with additional power phases or to the newer GPU chip. At the same time, the noise level of the two cards turned out to be identical, so we won’t repost the graph from our previous review.