ASUS EAH6870 DirectCU Video Card Review

ASUS debuts a customized Radeon HD 6870 in its DirectCU line of video cards. The EAH6870 DirectCU has a custom cooling solution, enhanced power circuitry, and a GPU frequency boost. We put it to the test against a reference Radeon HD 6870 and a GeForce GTX 470.

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Lost Planet 2

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Lost Planet 2 is a third-person squad-based sci-fi shooter. It takes place on a distant colonial planet that is overrun by massive bug-like creates known as Akrid. Unlike the first Lost Planet, Lost Planet 2 does not take place entirely under ice and snow. Lost Planet 2 shows the planet being thawed out for reasons unknown at first. Our test procedure takes place in an early jungle scene, during the first encounter with jungle pirates, and lasts for about five minutes. For Lost Planet 2 we have set the playability bar at 25 frames per second. After extensive testing, we found that the game’s responsiveness and fluidity did not suffer between 25 and 30 frames per second. Launching the game lets you select either DX9 or DX11 mode, we have chosen DX11.


Highest Playable Settings

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In Lost Planet 2, both the ASUS EAH6870 DirectCU and the AMD Radeon HD 6870 were playable at 1920x1200, no AA, 16X AF, and the highest playable settings. The NVIDIA GeForce GTX 470 was playable at the higher resolution of 2560x1600 with no AA, 16X AF, and the highest in-game settings. This means that in Lost Planet 2 we had the best gameplay experience with the GeForce GTX 470. It also means that miniscule boost to the GPU frequency on the EAH6870 DirectCU didn’t provide any gameplay experience improvement.


Apples-to-Apples

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For the apples-to-apples testing in Lost Planet 2 all three video cards were using the settings of 1920x1200, no AA, 16X AF, and the highest in-game settings. Here the NVIDIA GeForce GTX 470 demonstrates its performance lead inside of Lost Planet 2 and maintained on average a 7 FPS lead over the ASUS EAH6870 DirectCU.


Image Quality

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For our image quality comparison we took a horizontal slice out of screenshots from each of the video cards running at their highest playable settings. This shows just how many more pixels there are at 2560 vs. 1920.