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HIS Radeon HD 6950 IceQ Edition Review

The HIS Radeon HD 6950 IceQ stands out in a crowded marketplace for having one of the most gaudy ‘in your face’ coolers we have ever seen. That said, we have reviewed several cards in the IceQ range before and have always been impressed with the overall cooling proficiency. The latest HD6950 doesn’t disappoint thanks to HIS lifting the cooler from their HD6970 and porting it over to the lower specified model.

The appearance of the card certainly won’t appeal to everyone, but I have grown to like it over the last year, as the cards have always left me with positive feelings. They might appear to have fallen hard from the ugly tree hitting every branch on the way down, but technically these are actually some of the best coolers currently available.

When idle, it is basically impossible to tell the card is active and when under gaming load, the noise emissions rise to around 32 dBa, which is a class leading result for a HD6950 graphics card. The fan spins between 800 rpm and 1,400 rpm which translates to an almost silent experience.

Currently the card is retailing exclusively with Overclockers UK for £221.99 inc vat. When we factor in that the cooler is worth £20, Dirt 3 £30 and Deus Ex Human Revolution £30 … the HD6950 hardware is basically costing around £140, which is a heck of a deal.

Pros:

  • Dirt 3.
  • Deus Ex: Human Revolution.
  • quietest performance HD6950 yet.
  • bags of overclocking headroom.
  • very good value for money.

Cons:

  • It could never be classed as pretty.
  • ‘Weight lifter’ concept is not needed for this card.
  • We have no idea why HIS supply it at reference clocks.

Kitguru says: An excellent, high performance HD6950.

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Rating: 9.0.

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