AMD Radeon HD 6670 Video Card Review
By Gabriel Torres on April 29, 2011


Introduction

The Radeon HD 6570 and Radeon HD 6670 were originally released at the beginning of the year as OEM products, i.e. available only for computer manufacturers. Last week, AMD released them on the retail market, with a suggested price of USD 80 and USD 100, respectively.

The USD 100 price point of the Radeon HD 6670 puts it between the GeForce GT 440 (USD 70 to USD 80) and the GeForce GTS 450 (USD 115). Since the Radeon HD 6570 is the video card competing directly with the GeForce GT 440, we will be comparing the Radeon HD 6670 to the GeForce GTS 450. We also added a Radeon HD 5670 to our comparison. Even though this video card is, today, in a different price range (USD 70), it is always good to see the performance improvement obtained by a new graphics chip compared to its counterpart from the previous generation.

In the table below we compare the main specs of the video cards included in our review. They are all DirectX 11 parts. The prices listed below do not include rebates. Prices were researched at Newegg.com on the day we published this review.

Video Card

Core Clock

Shader Clock

Memory Clock (Real)

Memory Clock (Effective)

Memory Interface

Memory Transfer Rate

Memory

Shaders

Price

GeForce GTS 450

783 MHz

1,566 MHz

1.8 GHz

3.6 GHz

128-bit

57.7 GB/s

1 GB GDDR5

192

USD 115

Radeon HD 6670

800 MHz

800 MHz

2 GHz

4 GHz

128-bit

64 GB/s

1 GB GDDR5

480

USD 100

Radeon HD 5670

775 MHz

775 MHz

2 GHz

4 GHz

128-bit

64 GB/s

512 MB GDDR5

400

USD 70

You can compare the specs of these video cards with other video cards by taking a look at our AMD ATI Chips Comparison Table and NVIDIA Chips Comparison Table tutorials.

Now let’s take a complete look at the reference model of the Radeon HD 6670.

The AMD Radeon HD 6670

Below we have an overall look at the AMD reference model of the Radeon HD 6670. It doesn’t require any additional power connector and it is a low-profile video card, meaning that you can install it on a low-profile case by replacing its rear bracket.

AMD Radeon HD 6670
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Figure 1: AMD Radeon HD 6670 reference model

AMD Radeon HD 6670
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Figure 2: AMD Radeon HD 6670 reference model

This video card has one DVI-D, one HDMI, and one VGA connector.

AMD Radeon HD 6670
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Figure 3: Video connectors

The AMD Radeon HD 6670 (Contíd)

In Figure 4, you can see the video card with its cooler removed. It uses only solid capacitors and ferrite-core coils (which makes the regulator present higher efficiency because they present lower energy loss than iron-core coils). The voltage regulator circuit has two phases for the graphics chip and one phase for the memory chips.

AMD Radeon HD 6670
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Figure 4: Video card with the cooler removed

The GPU heatsink can be seen in Figures 5 and 6. It has a copper base, aluminum fins, and a 45 mm fan.

AMD Radeon HD 6670
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Figure 5: The GPU heatsink

AMD Radeon HD 6670
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Figure 6: The GPU heatsink

The Radeon HD 6670 reference model uses four 2 Gbit GDDR5 memory chips, making its 1 GB memory (2 Gbit x 4 = 1 GB). The chips used are H5GQ2H24MFR-T2C parts from Hynix, which support up to 2.5 GHz (5 GHz DDR), and since on this video card memory is accessed at 2 GHz (4 GHz DDR), there is still a huge 25% margin for you to increase the memory clock rate while keeping the chips inside the maximum they support. Of course you can always try to overclock the memory chips above their specs.

AMD Radeon HD 6670
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Figure 7: Memory chips

Before seeing the performance results, let’s recap the main features of this video card.

Main Features

The main features of the reference model of the Radeon HD 6670 video card include:

How We Tested

During our benchmarking sessions, we used the configuration listed below. Between our benchmarking sessions the only variable was the video card being tested.

Hardware Configuration

Software Configuration

Driver Versions

Software Used

Error Margin

We adopted a 3% error margin. Thus, differences below 3% cannot be considered relevant. In other words, products with a performance difference below 3% should be considered as having similar performance.

Call of Duty 4

Call of Duty 4 is a DirectX 9 game implementing high-dynamic range (HDR) and its own physics engine, which is used to calculate how objects interact. For example, if you shoot, exactly what will happen to the object when the bullet hits it? Will it break? Will it move? Will the bullet bounce back? It gives a more realistic experience to the user.

To get accurate results, we had to disable the 80 FPS limit in the game. To do this, input the command, “/seta com max fps 1000” (minus the quotes) into the console (` key). It can be set to any number greater than 200.

We ran this program at two 16:10 widescreen resolutions, 1440x900 and 1680x1050, maxing out all image quality controls (i.e., everything was set to the maximum values in the Graphics and Texture menus). We used the internal game benchmarking feature, running a demo provided by NVIDIA called “wetwork.” We are putting this demo here for downloading if you want to run your own benchmarks. We ran the demo five times, and the results below are the average number of frames per second (FPS) achieved by each video card.

Radeon HD 6670

Call of Duty 4 - Maximum

1440x900

Difference

GeForce GTS 450

84.6

14%

Radeon HD 6670

74.2

 

Radeon HD 5670

69.8

6%

Radeon HD 6670

Call of Duty 4 - Maximum

1680x1050

Difference

GeForce GTS 450

79.2

30%

Radeon HD 6670

60.8

 

Radeon HD 5670

55.9

9%

StarCraft II: Wings of Liberty

StarCraft II: Wings of Liberty is a very popular DirectX 9 game that was released in 2010. Though this game uses an old version of DirectX, the number of textures that can be represented on one screen can push most of the top-end graphics cards to their limits (especially when the graphics settings are set at “ultra”). StarCraft II: Wings of Liberty uses its own physics engine that is bound to the CPU and thus does not benefit from PhysX.

We tested this game at 1440x900 and 1680x1050. The quality of the game was set to the “medium” preset, disabling both anti-aliasing and anisotropic filtering. We then used FRAPS to collect the frame rate of a replay on the “Unit Testing” custom map. We used a battle between very large armies to stress the video cards.

Radeon HD 6670

StarCraft II: Wings of Liberty

1440x900

Difference

GeForce GTS 450

98.75

12%

Radeon HD 6670

88.52

 

Radeon HD 5670

83.56

6%

Radeon HD 6670

Starcraft II: Wings of Liberty

1680x1050

Difference

GeForce GTS 450

92.35

12%

Radeon HD 6670

82.69

 

Radeon HD 5670

75.49

10%

Crysis Warhead

Crysis Warhead is a DirectX 10 game based on the same engine as the original Crysis, but optimized (it runs under DirectX 9.0c when installed on Windows XP).

We used the HardwareOC Crysis Warhead Benchmark Tool to collect the data for this test. We ran this program at 1440x900 and 1680x1050 at “high” image quality (but with no anti-aliasing and no anisotropic filtering) and using the Airfield demo. The results below are the number of frames per second achieved by each video card.

Radeon HD 6670

Crysis Warhead

1440x900

Difference

GeForce GTS 450

34.8

11%

Radeon HD 6670

31.4

 

Radeon HD 5670

28.6

10%

Radeon HD 6670

Crysis Warhead

1680x1050

Difference

GeForce GTS 450

27.3

11%

Radeon HD 6670

24.6

 

Radeon HD 5670

22.6

9%

Far Cry 2

Far Cry 2 is based on an entirely new game engine called Dunia, which is DirectX 10 when played under Windows Vista with a DirectX 10 compatible video card.

We used the benchmarking utility that comes with this game at 1440x900 and 1680x1050, setting image quality to “high” (with no anti-aliasing) and running the “Ranch Long” demo three times. The results below are expressed in frames per second and are an arithmetic average of the three results collected.

Radeon HD 6670

Farcry 2

1440x900

Difference

GeForce GTS 450

97.63

33%

Radeon HD 6670

73.49

 

Radeon HD 5670

65.42

12%

Radeon HD 6670

Farcry 2

1680x1050

Difference

GeForce GTS 450

86.44

40%

Radeon HD 6670

61.72

 

Radeon HD 5670

54.38

13%

Aliens vs. Predator

Aliens vs. Predator is a DirectX 11 game that makes full use of tessellation and advanced shadow rendering. We used the Aliens vs. Predator Benchmark Tool developed by Rebellion. This program reads its configuration from a text file (our configuration files can be found here). We ran this program at 1440x900 and 1680x1050, with texture set at “low,” shadows set at “low,” no anisotropic filtering and no anti-aliasing.

Radeon HD 6670

Aliens vs. Predator

1440x900

Difference

GeForce GTS 450

35.7

7%

Radeon HD 6670

33.3

 

Radeon HD 5670

30.0

11%

Radeon HD 6670

Aliens vs. Predator

1680x1050

Difference

GeForce GTS 450

27.7

7%

Radeon HD 6670

25.8

 

Radeon HD 5670

23.1

12%

Lost Planet 2

Lost Planet 2 is a game that uses a lot of DirectX 11 features, like tessellation (to round out the edges of polygonal models), displacement maps (added to the tessellated mesh to add fine grain details), DirectCompute soft body simulation (to introduce more realism in the “boss” monsters), and DirectCompute wave simulation (to introduce more realism in the physics calculations in water surfaces; when you move or when gunshots and explosions hit the water, it moves accordingly). We reviewed the video cards using Lost Planet 2 internal benchmarking features, choosing the “Benchmark A” (we know that “Benchmark B” is the one recommended for reviewing video cards, however, at least with us, results were inconsistent). We set graphics at “medium,” no anti-aliasing and DX11 at “full,” at 1440x900 and 1680x1050. The results below are the number of frames per second generated by each video card.

Radeon HD 6670

Lost Planet 2

1440x900

Difference

GeForce GTS 450

38.6

5%

Radeon HD 6670

36.6

 

Radeon HD 5670

33.6

9%

Radeon HD 6670

Lost Planet 2

1680x1050

Difference

GeForce GTS 450

38.6

29%

Radeon HD 6670

30.0

 

Radeon HD 5670

25.2

19%

3DMark 11 Professional

3DMark 11 Professional measures Shader 5.0 (i.e., DirectX 11) performance. We ran this program at 1440x900 and 1680x1050, selecting the four graphics tests available and deselecting the other tests available. We used two image quality settings, “performance” and “extreme,” both at their default settings. The results being compared are the “GPU Score” achieved by each video card.

Radeon HD 6670

3DMark Vantage - Entry

1440x900

Difference

GeForce GTS 450

1862

16%

Radeon HD 6670

1602

 

Radeon HD 5670

1451

10%

Radeon HD 6670

3DMark Vantage - Entry

1680x1050

Difference

GeForce GTS 450

1504

14%

Radeon HD 6670

1317

 

Radeon HD 5670

1174

12%

Radeon HD 6670

3DMark 11 - Performance

1440x900

Difference

GeForce GTS 450

1562

15%

Radeon HD 6670

1353

 

Radeon HD 5670

1218

11%

Radeon HD 6670

3DMark 11 - Performance

1680x1050

Difference

GeForce GTS 450

1247

13%

Radeon HD 6670

1100

 

Radeon HD 5670

987

11%

Conclusions

The GeForce GTS 450 was between 5% and 40% faster than the Radeon HD 6670 in our benchmarking. So, between the two, the GTS 450 is the video card we recommend. Some may think the comparison is a little bit unfair, since the GeForce GTS 450 is USD 15 more expensive than the Radeon HD 6670. However, with this 15% difference in price, you get up to 40% higher performance, and, therefore, the extra money spells money well-spent in our book.

Originally at http://www.hardwaresecrets.com/article/AMD-Radeon-HD-6670-Video-Card-Review/1259


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