The FirePro V9800 Up Close
It's true that high-end workstation graphics cards may be based on the same core architectures as gaming-targeted graphics cards, however, their purposes are very different. While they both accomplish the same task, processing commands and rendering images on-screen, workstation cards endure a more strenuous existence than their gaming counterparts. Workstation cards are used to solve complex, mission-critical problems, like helping engineers design and build cars; helping architects to plan and construct buildings, and even help oil and gas companies to provide more effective means of production and transportation.
Like its predecessor, the V9800 uses a matte black heatsink assembly that houses ATI's dual-slot copper heatpipe cooling solution. The embedded fan exhausts air out of the back of the card and out of the system, which keeps components cooler inside the case. Upon start up, the V9800 powers on quietly and stays that way during normal use. AMD has tuned the latest batch of FirePro cards to remain relatively quiet, even with high end models, and V9800 owners will benefit from it.
On the front end of the card, we find a 6-pin and an 8-pin PCIe power connector. This is different from the V8800, which featured two 6-pin connections. Interestingly enough, the maximum board power is 199W, down 9W from the V8800. It's worth noting, the RV870 GPU is well known for its low power consumption during idle due to aggressive clock gating and voltage reductions when the card is not under significant load.
The FirePro V9800 sports six mini-DisplayPort connections and one stereo port. That's a couple more than the V8800 which offered four DP outputs. Also seen in the image above is the backplate which helps to dissipate heat created by the components installed on the card.
FirePro V9800 vs Quadro 6000 Comparison Chart