MSI Radeon HD 7970 Lightning 3 GB 51

MSI Radeon HD 7970 Lightning 3 GB Review

Test Setup »

A Closer Look

MSI installed a huge cooler on their card which uses five heatpipes and two large fans to keep the card cool.

The metal backplate provides some additional protection for the components on the back of the card.

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.

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.

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

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

For voltage control the card uses a CHiL 8228 controller, just like the reference design. It offers extensive software voltage control and monitoring features, and is fully supported by MSI Afterburner.

The GDDR5 memory chips are made by Hynix, and carry the model number H5GQ2H24MFR-R0C. They are specified to run at 1500 MHz (6000 MHz GDDR5 effective).

AMD's Tahiti graphics processor introduces a new shader architecture, it is also the first GPU to be produced on a 28 nm process at TSMC. The transistor count is 4.31 billion.
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