HIS Radeon 6970 IceQ Turbo
HIS has taken a great card and made it better here, adding a custom heatsink that drastically improves temperatures and noise levels. The temperatures are one of the best we’ve seen on a Radeon 6970 out there, and the fan is barely audible at idle and still wonderfully quiet under full load. Further, the addition of a $50 game in the package is an outstanding value for consumers.
In terms of performance, the 6970 IceQ Turbo fell just behind the GTX 570 for the most part, though mostly in game titles that seem to specifically prefer Nvidia cards over their AMD counterparts. The 900MHz core speed gave it a respectable boost in a few instances where the two cards went toe-to-toe.
The only downsides here are the IceQ heatsink is very large, specifically wide with those heatpipes protruding out the side, and none of the Radeon cards can compete with Nvidia on the PhysX or Folding @ Home front; these aren’t exclusive to HIS cards though, in fairness.
With the 6970 IceQ priced around $370 USD, this is on par with competitors’ cards that feature factory overclocks and custom heatsinks. However, when we consider that a $50 game is included for essentially no price increase, that represents an outstanding value.
The Pure Point: Running cool and quiet with a $50 game tossed in for free against the competition, the HIS Radeon 6970 IceQ Turbo is an outstanding value.