A Closer Look
Sapphire's fansink uses a copper base and four heatpipes to keep the GPU cool.
On the front of the card an extra heatspreader has been installed to cool secondary components like voltage regulation circuitry and memory.
The card requires two 6-pin PCI-Express power cables for operation. This power configuration is good for up to 225 W of power draw.
The HD 7870 comes with AMD's dual BIOS feature that was introduced with the HD 6900 Series. It provides a safety net in case a BIOS flash goes wrong; simply switch to the second BIOS and flash back to the original BIOS.
For voltage control the card uses the NCP4206 chip, it is found on the GTX 690 and some GTX 680 variants. I haven't seen it on any ATI cards before. It is also unknown whether it supports voltage control or monitoring.
The GDDR5 memory chips are made by Elpida, and carry the model number W2032BBBG-50-F. They are specified to run at 1250 MHz (5000 MHz GDDR5 effective).
AMD's Piatcairn graphics processor uses the GCN shader architecture, it is produced on a 28 nm process at TSMC. The transistor count is 2.8 billion.