Wow factor. That's what hits you when you unbox the HIS Radeon HD 7950 IceQ Turbo. It's got presence. The normal, conservative-for-graphics-board-makers box art gives nothing away about what you're going to see when you slide the box out of the sleeve, open the lid and look under the crush resistant ESD-proof foam packaging. A gleaming silver heat sink and black fan shroud awaits, with a nicely contrasted blower-style fan in blue. It's big. Longer, Bigger, Faster. The bulbous end makes you mentally add 'Uncut', as well. At around $340USD, it's deep in the performance enthusiast market, past the traditional sweet spot and a little above the $319 price point set in AMD's announcement in late August.
The HIS HD 7950 IceQ Turbo features the AMD Tahiti Pro design, tweaked by HIS and augmented in two ways. Firstly, the reference design heatsink and fan is replaced with what appears to be a much larger design, utilizing bigger heatpipes and a longer heat fin array, plus a larger blower fan that pulls air in from both top and bottom. The design is touted as both quieter and cooler than the reference product, and HIS leverages this to offer more performance than a standard card by bumping engine clock up to 900MHz, a 100MHz increase over the base 800MHz of standard HD 7950's. This is complicated with AMD's recent release of new BIOS for the reference HD 7950, updating the clock speed to 850MHz and offering a new Boost feature of 925MHz.
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