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Report: graphics cards and thermal characteristics
by Damien Triolet
Published on April 20, 2010

Radeon HD 4870 X2
The Radeon HD 4870 X2 is equivalent to 2 Radeon HD 4870s in CrossFire. Only the format is different as the 2 GPUs are placed on the same PCB and cooler with an enormous heatsink and its turbine that expels hot air from the casing. The card is also longer than the other Radeons which means that it takes up more space in the casing, but less than the CrossFire system of course.




Infrared thermography

System in idle.


System in load.


Graphics card in idle.


Graphics card in load.

In comparison to the CrossFire system, the system seems to heat up much less in idle. You will also note that one of the 2 GPUs is hotter than the other. In load however, both GPUs heat up a lot and this spreads throughout the system.

Temperature and noise level readings

The readings give the temperatures of each GPU and show that on the Radeon, one of them is better cooled than the other both in charge and idle, which is relatively logical as the flow of air heats up on going through the heatsink. Noise level readings are rather high, above all in load where the Radeon HD 4870 X2 beats all records. This said, figures do not tell the whole story and the 55 dB on this Radeon X2 are less annoying than the 50 dB of the CrossFire Radeon HD 4870 system.

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