MSI HD5870 Lightning Review

Test Setup and Overclocking

MSI HD5870   Lightning Review

Test Setup, Overclocking and Temperatures

Test Setup

For todays testing we are going to put the R5870 Lightning through its paces against a reference design HD5870, and a pair of crossfire HD5770s which we recently tested and found to be very close in performance to the 5870.

Motherboard : ASUS Rampage II Extreme
CPU : Intel i7 920 @ 3.6GHz
RAM : 6GB Corsair Platinum @1333mhz
PSU : OCZ 1000w Gold PSU
HDD : 1TB Samsung Spinpoint F1
Monitor : Samsung 2433 24" @ 1920x1200
OS : Windows 7 Ultimate 64
GPU : MSI HD5870 Lightning with Catalyst 10.3 drivers
           Reference design 5870 @ stock and 5770 in crossfire for comparisons


With such a high grade level of components within the Lightning hopes were high for a great overclocking result. Not only does it have great power-phase and "military grade" components, but the twin 8-pin power is specifically mentioned as something that would assist overclocking results.

Sure enough with a small tweak to the GPU voltage we managed to get a perfectly stable 1034MHz on the Core, and 1351MHz on the GDDR5.

We used the combination of the MSI Afterburner to tweak the voltage and clocks, whilst MSIs Kombustor, based upon Furmark, was used for temperature and stability tests.


The Twin Frozr showed its worth under stock settings with the GPU Core kept under 60°C even under the tortuous Kombustor test.

Our additional voltage and large overclock saw this rise to just past 70°C, but still within acceptable levels considering how heavily Kombustor loads the GPU. Noise was perfectly pleasant at 50% fan and the much advertised squeal-free chokes pretty much did their job. Although not absolutely squeak free the R5870 Lightning is a huge improvement upon the reference design.

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Most Recent Comments

12-04-2010, 11:16:53

Is that a 2-pin fan header on top of the card where the PCB sticks out?Quote

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