Unlike our HD 7850 2GB test sample, which sadly bore no relation to the stock design, AMD tells us that some partners will definitely be using this stock design, as well as their own custom PCB and cooler versions.
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The stock card measures in a svelte 246mm in length and, as with any graphics card worth gaming on, is dual-slot. A pair of top mounted 6-pin PCI-E power connectors provide power with AMD stating the card’s typical board power at around 175W. Outputs are handled by the now familiar formation of DVI, HDMI and a pair of mini-DisplayPorts.
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The entire top half of the card’s rear I/O is reserved for ventilation, with an 80mm radial fan providing the airflow. Whipping a handful of screws from the backside of the card reveals the dual-slot cooler is a three part construction built around a three copper heatpipes fitted onto a copper vapour chamber. It’s certainly a far more capable cooling solution than that of the HD 7770 1GB, with the three heatpipes running through a stack of tightly packed aluminium cooling fins. Around this is fitted a black aluminium mount which makes direct contact with the eight 256MB GDDR5 memory chip and houses the radial fan, with the branded glossy plastic shroud topping the card.
Click to enlarge - the power circuitry is centred near the rear I/O
Interestingly, the card’s power circuitry is towards the rear I/O rather than beneath the fan, presumably to better benefit from the fan’s airflow. There are five power phases, with four for the GPU and the fifth powering the memory for a total of 5+1 power phases on the stock card.
Graphics processor AMD Radeon HD 7870 2GB, 1,000MHz