Now that AMD's mainstream Radeon HD 5700 series parts have been available in the market for a couple of months or so, we're starting to see more boards deviate from the company's reference design in an attempt to offer something different to potential buyers. Elite Bastards take a look at two such boards with very different agendas, from the heavily overclocked XFX Radeon HD 5770 XXX through to the vapour chamber, custom cooled Sapphire Radeon HD 5770 Vapor-X.
While XFX have kept their eyes firmly on clock speeds and performance, Sapphire's Radeon HD 5770 Vapor-X board sees only a token 10MHz core clock speed increase in this discipline to mark it out from the pack. Instead, the real highlight of this particular part is the presence of Sapphire's custom-built vapour chamber cooling solution, as you can see below.
This dual-slot Vapor-X cooler differs from a reference cooling solution not just in the way it works, but also in size, utilising a larger fan but not covering the entire front of the board like AMD's own offering. The only real downside of this design is that it renders it unable to effectively exhaust hot air out of the rear of the chassis like a reference part.
Read the full review at Elite Bastards