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MSI R6970 Lightning Twin Frozr III Review (18 Phase PWM)

There have been some incredible HD6970’s released to market recently, most noticeably the Asus HD6970 Direct CU II which was an overclocking ‘tour de force’. The MSI R6970 Lightning Twin Frozr III didn’t quite overclock to the same heady heights, but it is supplied with higher ‘out of the box’ clocks and runs even cooler than the Asus variant.

It is incredible to think how much effort companies such as MSI put into their graphics card development. The reference HD6970 can hit close to 80c when gaming, but the Twin Frozr III design keeps the GPU core running at under 60c at all times. A reduction of 20c is nothing short of an engineering miracle and the MSI engineers really do deserve a pat on the back for coming up with such a monumental design.

The card is supplied with a core speed of 940mhz, and in our case this could be increased to 1040mhz with some voltage increases. Results will vary from card to card, but there is clearly still quite a bit of headroom if you experiment with the Afterburner software settings, just be sure to unlock the voltage options as highlighted on our overclocking page.

The Twin Frozr III cooler is one of the most proficient coolers we have tested, but it is also one of the quietest. The angular blade design ensure that all of the components receive air flow, but the noise levels peak around 32 dBa, which is a record for a flagship, high end graphics card.

Gaming performance is as good as we would expect, and like all AMD HD6970’s, the MSI R6970 Lightning can deliver great frame rates in many of the modern gaming engines across three 24 inch screens. If you are looking for a new HD6970 then we suggest you shortlist the Asus HD6970 Direct CU II and the MSI R6970 Lightning Twin Frozr III, they are without a doubt two of the finest AMD solutions on the market.

This card will be available from Overclockers UK for £339.99.

Pros

  • Class leading cooler
  • low noise levels
  • efficient power consumption for the performance
  • great build quality
  • two fan settings
  • overclocking is easy with Afterburner

Cons

  • more expensive than reference card

KitGuru says: High clock speeds, low noise, great temperatures, excellent performance.

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Rating: 9.5.

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