MSI Radeon HD 7870 HAWK 2 GB

MSI Radeon HD 7870 HAWK 2 GB

Test Setup »

A Closer Look


MSI's cooler uses five heatpipes to transport heat away from the GPU quickly to a large array of cooling fins. Two fans provide plenty of airflow to get rid of the heat.


The metal backplate provides protection against damage on the back. The circular cutout you see is for the GPU reactor.


Once the cooler is removed, you can see the large metal heatspreader covering important components of the card like voltage regulation circuitry. It also adds some stability to the card, to protect against bending of the PCB caused by the heavy cooler.


The card uses two 6-pin PCI-Express power connectors. This power configuration is good for up to 225 W of power draw.


On the back of the card you will find MSI's GPU reactor. Which uses an additional PCB to provide extra voltage filtering to the GPU. It has been placed that way to be as close as possible to the GPU to maximize its effect.


Three easy to use voltage check points are located near the back edge of the card. They provide measuring access for GPU, memory and PLL voltage.


A BIOS switch is used to toggle between the normal and LN2 BIOS. It is also useful to protect against failed BIOS flashes.


For voltage control the card uses a CHiL 8225 controller, like the reference design. It has software voltage control and plenty of monitoring features. We've seen it on several cards before, so it is well supported in overclocking software.


The GDDR5 memory chips are made by Hynix, and carry the model number H5GQ2H24MFR-T2C. They are specified to run at 1250 MHz (5000 MHz GDDR5 effective).


AMD's new Pitcairn graphics processor completes the AMD 28 nm GPU stack. It is produced on a 28 nm process at TSMC, with a transistor count of 2.8 billion.
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