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When the component market is filled with repackaged versions of the same product, what makes you choose one manufacturer over another?
The first Radeon card I purchased was the Sapphire X800 XT Platinum Edition, and it was awesome. I’ve been running a HD5850 2GB Toxic Edition for the last few years, and it’s awesome. I’m staying with Sapphire for the foreseeable future.
So, how on earth do other companies convert us to their brand? By offering something unique.
With the recent release of the Radeon HD7790 we’ve seen a number of vendors offering their own take on things. Sapphire are no different, and have released a few different versions. The newest of which is the 2GB OC edition, boasting a brand new cooler. It’s fashioned in such a way to allow additional cooling of the memory, situated on the reverse of the card. It features a dual copper heat pipe core, mounted with an aluminium aerofoil cooling system to keep temperatures under control. One of the things which stands out for me is the inclusion of a back plate, which provides active cooling to the memory modules on the reverse of the PCB. A cool new design feature allows the back plate to touch the front mounted fan cooling system, allowing it to actively cool the rear of the card to as low as 13 degrees. As well as being functional, it also creates a more aesthetically pleasing look which, in a world where Gaming PC's are filled with Perspex windows, I feel is an important feature which a lot of manufacturers tend to overlook.
Included is Sapphires FleX Eyefinity feature, allowing you to connect up to four digital displays to the card. Factory overclocked to 1050MHz with memory overclocked to 1600MHz, benchmarking the card against the HD7850 looks like it might provide some interesting results. Stay tuned for more.