The features on this card resemble those on AMD's reference design. Again Sapphire positively surprises us with the excellent performance of the cooler. Its 55 degrees are the lowest in this round-up, which makes it perfect for overclocking
HD 7870 GHz Edition 2G D5
• The Sapphire Radeon™ HD 7870 OC 2GB is one of the best in its class today. Pre-overclocked, it is 5 to 8% faster than the reference Radeon™ HD 7870 GHz Edition as well as reference-design products from other brands. The original Dual-X cooler endows it with high overclocking potential, so it can be easily overclocked further to the level of top-end Radeon™ HD 7950s and even more. Its eye-catching packaging is going to be attractive on a shop shelf whereas its complete set of accessories, 2-year warranty and reasonable price (comparable to regular Radeon™ HD 7870s) make it an almost perfect graphics card. In conclusion, we would like to award Sapphire Radeon™ HD 7870 OC 2GB graphics card with ourEditor’s Choice title as the best-balanced Radeon™ HD 7870 graphics card available today.
Sapphire launched its HD 7870 GHz OC Edition graphics card that’s aimed at serious gamers. Gaming at 1920x1080 is something that this card will chew up with ease while 2560x1600 will be playable in most games at highest settings. The HD 7870 card’s performance outweighs that of HD 6970. Since it comes with slightly higher clocks than the reference card, HD 7870 GHz OC Edition will provide slightly better performance as well.
• Throughout our testing we found that the Sapphire HD 7870 OC Edition video card had better performance in every game compared to the Radeon™ HD 6970 and the GeForce GTX 570. Not only did it average higher framerates in all of our testing, it also allowed us to enable and play at higher graphics settings. Performance was better than other video cards in the same price range. We achieved a strong overclock using Sapphires TriXX which resulted in improved performance and made more graphics options available. The Dual-X cooling system kept the operating temperatures low without offending our ears with excess noise, and did all this while being far more power efficient. If you are in the market looking to upgrade to a cooler, more power efficient, 28nm video card with more performance, the Sapphire HD 7870 OC Edition is a product very much worth your consideration.
"In the end, Radeon™ HD 7870 is fantastic graphic card, especially Sapphire designed one - powerful, silent and one of the coolest in this segment we've seen to date. It almost sounds like description of the perfect graphics card. With just a little bit lower price it will reach complete perfection."
• What AMD and Sapphire have done here is create, in my opinion, one of the better bang for your buck cards available on the market at this moment. You have GTX 580 performance (give or take depending on benchmarks) in a package that uses nearly 100 W less power, has a quiet and effective aftermarket cooling solution, and overclocks to the moon if you give her some voltage. Pricing for this specific card comes in at$359.99 + SH at newegg.com which is still cheaper than the GTX 580 and $70 less than its bigger brother the 7950. I believe with both the 7850 and 7870 that AMD found a nice spot in the market while we wait and see what the other camp has to offer. This card is Overclockers.com Approved!
• The improvements over the AMD reference design of the HD7870 is obvious and works very well for keeping temperatures low while giving the card an aggressive look. PCWizKid loves the dual fan configuration of the Sapphire HD7870 OC Ed which is surprisingly quiet. The included bundle of cables and connectors that Sapphire provides is excellent also which adds the the value you get out of it compared to other brands. • Video Review: http://youtu.be/tIxSz6SsTgw
• To wrap this up let me say that this card was a pleasure to work with. It handled all of our benchmarks without a problem and managed to do so while remaining completely silent. Sapphire really has developed quite an impressive cooling solution for these cards and it should also be able to take a little more of an overclock above what they've given it. Graphics cards are the real heart of a gaming system and these cards really do provide the performance that most users will be looking for. Right out of the box this card delivers amazing performance that is certain to give nVidia a run for their money. This is a great card for the red team to come out with and Sapphire has done a great job at making it even better than the reference version. There really aren't any games that this card won't be able to handle as long as you aren't expecting ridiculous frame rates. Playable frame rates at high resolutions are exactly what this card is able to provide. We know that it's just a matter of time before nVidia comes with their own answer to this card, but until then this is the new champ in terms of price versus performance. For this reason we have no problem giving this card our Editor's Choice Award here at Motherboards.Org.