AMD Radeon HD 6970 & 6950 Debut: Enter Cayman

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Total System Power Consumption

Before bringing this article to a close, we'd like to cover a few final data points--namely power consumption and noise. Throughout all of our benchmarking and testing, we monitored how much power our test system was consuming using a power meter. Our goal was to give you all an idea as to how much power each configuration used while idling and while under a heavy workload. Please keep in mind that we were testing total system power consumption at the outlet here, not just the power being drawn by the graphics cards alone.

Total System Power Consumption
Tested at the Outlet

Our power consumption tests don't show much to differentiate the Radeon HD 6970 from the GeForce GTX 570--both cards are within a few watts of one another under both idle and load conditions. Both cards also use much more power than the Radoen HD 5870 under load, which is an obvious result of their relatively large die sizes and high clock speeds. The Radeon HD 6950 also consumed a fair bit more power than the HD 5870, but the delta was much smaller.

With power consumption up from the previous generation, it should come as no surprise that heat output is increased as well. We found the Radeon HD 6900 series cards to idle in the low 40'C range but lead temps hover in the upper 80's.

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