Wednesday, December 23rd 2009

Sapphire HD 5770 BIOS Botchup Leaves Users with Just 720 Stream Processors

Several users of the recently released Sapphire HD 5770 Vapor-X graphics cards were surprised to find that GPU-Z showed the shader (stream processor) count of their graphics cards to be 720 (instead of the advertised 800). A disgruntled user then submitted a sample of the graphics card BIOS (BIOS Version: 012.014.000.004, dated 2009/12/03) to TechPowerUp. Our using the BIOS on an actual HD 5770 Vapor-X sample confirmed the issue. The affected cards continue to have the device ID corresponding to the HD 5770 model (68B8), have the advertised clock speeds (860/1200 MHz core/memory), and yet have only 720 operational stream processors enabled by the video BIOS.

When one of the users contacted Sapphire tech-support, it responded with:
"I just tested one of the cards I have here, and yes it does have the 720 shaders, the if you are comparing the stream process which is at 800, it is different the GPUZ software does not tell you the stream process the GPU unit has."
Subjectively, the response doesn't seem satisfactory or working towards solving the problem. GPU-Z displays the actual number of shaders (stream processors) available to the operating system, not how many are physically present on the GPU-die. With this issue being reported by users spread across various markets, it is clear that Sapphire may have an entire lot/batch of HD 5770 Vapor-X graphics cards carrying the BIOS which enables only 720 stream processors. Affected users are advised to contact Sapphire support to resolve the issue. Expert users can find the corrective BIOS which enables all 800 stream processors (VER012.013.000.001.034705) in our VGA BIOS Database here.

Update: Sapphire has notified me that they are looking into this, a BIOS update will be available "shortly".

Update 2: Statement from Sapphire: "SAPPHIRE Technology has determined that a small batch of the recently launched HD 5770 Vapor-X graphics cards was shipped with a BIOS that enables only 720 stream processors instead of the full 800 stream processors available on this model. Other performance parameters are to the correct specifications. This issue can be rectified with a BIOS update. The correct BIOS code can be downloaded from www.sapphiretech.com [Graphic Card -> PCI-E -> Sapphire HD 5700 Series -> Sapphire Vapor-X HD 5770 1 GB GDDR5 PCIE -> Submit -> BIOS] and some partner websites. We regret any inconvenience caused to end users."
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79 Comments on Sapphire HD 5770 BIOS Botchup Leaves Users with Just 720 Stream Processors

#1
95Viper
Interesting read... Thanks
Posted on Reply
#2
Zubasa
I guess this is why all those users are unhappy with their cards.
Posted on Reply
#3
cadaveca
My name is Dave
Probably. what strikes me as odd is that the bios is newer than the 800 SP one, so obviously, they either know about it already, and have made this change for a reason(and if so, they are commiting an illegal act to sell something in box that is not what it says on the outside, might as well have just been a phonebook in the box, legally), or thier quality control absolutely sucks!

Oh, and you can add "2900XT UVD" to sapphire's list of screw-up with box labels, reviews, and the truth. Makes me wonder what was missed with the 3xxx-gen..we seem to have a pattern evolving here.

At least they fixed RMA issues. :laugh:
Posted on Reply
#5
theorw
Big deal....A flash with any 5770 BIOS card will correct the issue.Just a sorry from sapphire is enough!!!
Posted on Reply
#6
cadaveca
My name is Dave
by: theorw
Big deal....A flash with any 5770 BIOS card will correct the issue.Just a sorry from sapphire is enough!!!
Of course, but currently, at least one user has been told something far from that, nor even close to the truth. I mean, check that quote...Obviously some training needs to happen @ Sapphire tech support, in the least. I'm not a bios programmer, but it doesn't seem likely to me that this was 100% a mistake.
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#9
1Kurgan1
The Knife in your Back
Aren't these hard locked? I mean if they are only bios locked whats to stop people from opening more up?
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#10
HossHuge
I hate these situations when companies F-up and put people through this kind of crap. You should be entitled to something more for having to go through this.
Posted on Reply
#11
[H]@RD5TUFF
This seems to speak to the quality or rather lack of, in their products. AMD should consider breaking off contracts with this company as not only do they make broken hardware, they seem to have borderline incompetent tech support.
Posted on Reply
#12
Mussels
Moderprator
by: 1Kurgan1
Aren't these hard locked? I mean if they are only bios locked whats to stop people from opening more up?
800 SP cards, BIOS update locked them to 720


Therefore, correct BIOS ups them to 800 shaders
Posted on Reply
#13

by: theorw
Big deal....A flash with any 5770 BIOS card will correct the issue.Just a sorry from sapphire is enough!!!
:slap: It is a big deal why should a user have to flash their bios because Sapphire messed up in the 1st place, and if you "Flash with any 5770 bios" say goodbye to your sapphire warranty, not too mention not everyone will feel confident/capable of doing this themselves, so it is indeed a BIG DEAL!!
#14
Mussels
Moderprator
by: InTeL-iNsIdE
:slap: It is a big deal why should a user have to flash their bios because Sapphire messed up in the 1st place, and if you "Flash with any 5770 bios" say goodbye to your sapphire warranty, not too mention not everyone will feel confident/capable of doing this themselves, so it is indeed a BIG DEAL!!
the real problem is all the users who dont want to flash/dont know how.

Technically sapphire has to take them back under warranty under these circumstances.
Posted on Reply
#15
theorw
by: Mussels
the real problem is all the users who dont want to flash/dont know how.

Technically sapphire has to take them back under warranty under these circumstances.
Well that would be OVERGROWING the problem.Its as easy as everyone updates their mobo for supporting newer CPUs or even BIOSmoding for upgrading into another MODEL.
SURE sapphire messed up BIG TIME but its an easy fix afterall!:cool:
I am sure most users would prefer a simple flash instead of sending the card back and waiting to receive it again...
Posted on Reply
#16

by: theorw
Well that would be OVERGROWING the problem.Its as easy as everyone updates their mobo for supporting newer CPUs or even BIOSmoding for upgrading into another MODEL.
SURE sapphire messed up BIG TIME but its an easy fix afterall!:cool:
I am sure most users would prefer a simple flash instead of sending the card back and waiting to receive it again...
Easy to who ? you try asking average jo to boot from a floppy/usb whatever and flashing a vga card in dos, it is not easy for probably 90% of people who will own one of these, and your post is a bit ignorant to that fact, not too mention it shouldn't have happened in the first place.
#17
theorw
by: InTeL-iNsIdE
Easy to who ? you try asking average jo to boot from a floppy/usb whatever and flashing a vga card in dos, it is not easy for probably 90% of people who will own one of these, and your post is a bit ignorant to that fact, not too mention it shouldn't have happened in the first place.
I admit its unacceptable by SAPPHIRE but its a well established company for years now and i dont think that they cant be forgiven for making one mistake right?EVERY sapphire card i owned was flawless and i had quite a few since x1k series.
So for everyone out there with this problem u ll have to dig in a bit more than usual into the PC world and follow this guide that will correct your problem!:)
http://forums.techpowerup.com/showpost.php?p=1689121&postcount=66
Posted on Reply
#18

by: theorw
I admit its unacceptable by SAPPHIRE but its a well established company for years now and i dont think that they cant be forgiven for making one mistake right?EVERY sapphire card i owned was flawless and i had quite a few since x1k series.
So for everyone out there with this problem u ll have to dig in a bit more than usual into the PC world and follow this guide that will correct your problem!:)
http://forums.techpowerup.com/showpost.php?p=1689121&postcount=66
Well you are wrong, cause they also did the same with the hd 4830, I agree mistakes can be made once!!

There is a saying I heard the other day, insanity is doing the same thing the same way and expecting it to turn out differently
#19

I already flashed my bios with an ASUS one, and I cannot confirm or infirm this. Interesting thing thow. Did it matter this in games, any performance downgrade with old bios? Just curious...
#20
Mussels
Moderprator
by: TAViX
I already flashed my bios with an ASUS one, and I cannot confirm or infirm this. Interesting thing thow. Did it matter this in games, any performance downgrade with old bios? Just curious...
missing 10% of the shaders would imply upto 10% slower
Posted on Reply
#21
Mussels
Moderprator
sapphires 'screwed up' twice, selling people less than what the box said was in there.

This is no different to buying a CPU and finding it clocked 100Mhz lower, or buying a 1024MB video card and finding out its 768MB - you did NOT get what you paid for
Posted on Reply
#22
Kreij
Senior Monkey Moderator
When you have a manufacturing plant that is producing thousands and thousands of parts, You can have super stringent QC processes and procedures in place and this kind of thing will still happen once in awhile. Most likely someone forgot to change the BIOS in whatever they use to flash the cards, when the assembly line switched from 5750s to 5770 or something like that. We own a manufacturing plant and people do make mistakes.

As long as Sapphire corrects the problem for those who bought their products this is not that big of a deal as it's only a configuration issue. It's a bit of a hassle for the users' to RMA the card, but no different than if you get a bad stick of RAM or something. Happens all the time.

The response from tech support, however, is what is unacceptable.

Just my 2 cents.
Posted on Reply
#23
Mussels
Moderprator
by: Kreij
When you have a manufacturing plant that is producing thousands and thousands of parts, You can have super stringent QC processes and procedures in place and this kind of thing will still happen once in awhile. Most likely someone forgot to change the BIOS in whatever they use to flash the cards, when the assembly line switched from 5750s to 5770 or something like that. We own a manufacturing plant and people do make mistakes.

As long as Sapphire corrects the problem for those who bought their products this is not that big of a deal as it's only a configuration issue. It's a bit of a hassle for the users' to RMA the card, but no different than if you get a bad stick of RAM or something. Happens all the time.

The response from tech support, however, is what is unacceptable.

Just my 2 cents.
HOPEFULLY, sapphire just release the BIOS file and some easy to use flashing tools (even just a batch file) - and RMA only for those who insist on not doing it themselves
Posted on Reply
#24
eidairaman1
I say AMD and Sapphire Forums need their hornets nests stirred up, to let them know that a number of boards are coming from the factory with the Incorrect Bios version loaded. Also those users that come here with the problem should look at this link on procedures to do the bios flash, now in event of failure where you cannot recover, do not tell the RMA section that you have flashed the bios, just state the board stopped working.

http://forums.techpowerup.com/showthread.php?t=111147
Posted on Reply
#25
W1zzard
i informed sapphire executives of this already, that's where the fix "shortly" is coming from
Posted on Reply
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