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4.4 out of 5 stars29
4.4 out of 5 stars
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The 6850 Direct CU is a fantastic card with typical high standards of Asus build quality. One of the biggest selling points this card has is the combination of cooling performance and high overclocking capabilities

The Direct CU cooler is very impressive, holding the card around the 65c threshold when gaming, and during normal use is barely audible. Though even when gaming its not intrusively loud. While there is no free game, the bundle includes a leather wallet, which can hold a small collection of CD's, or DVD's.

Overclocking headroom is fantastic, but I don't understand why Asus didn't set the default clocks higher - even 850mhz on the core and 1100mhz via the memory is fine using AMD's own catalyst overdrive feature.

I've had mine at 1000/1250 with a voltage bump using msi afterburner and the temps weren't too bad. I think 950/1150 is more realistic though, a sweet spot if you will. Though I do tend to keep the core at 850/1100 for everyday use, which it handles fine without the need for extra voltage.

If you are getting a 6850 I thoroughly recommend the asus one!
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on 23 May 2011
The Asus Radeon HD6850 simply plugs into a PCI-E motherboard slot and is ready to use. One slightly unexpected feature is the requirement for TWO auxiliary power connections (in some of the reviews describing earlier versions only one auxiliary power connection was present; Asus apparently changed that to two connections more recently).
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on 31 August 2011
Was looking for a replacement for a silent nVidia solution that burnt a couple weeks back. There is nothing in the area of silent on the market these days so had to go for a conventional cooling video card.

My demands were something with acceptable performance for a casual gamer, with a good price naturally and as quiet as possible. According to reviews the performance for this GPU was just right, the price was not too bad either, the only question was the amount of noise from the card. I went for it nevertheless, thinking that if it is too noisy I'll be just falling back to a cheap silent video I've got when I am not playing for extended periods of time.

However, to my big surprise, the card proved to be very quiet, after assembling the rig I could not tell that the old silent video card was gone and one with a fan was installed. The performance is fairly acceptable in line with the reviews and it is still fairly quiet even during load so I would call it one of the best solutions in terms of price, performance and noise levels.

5 stars without a question.
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on 26 July 2011
I have decided to replace my modest GPU (VTX3D 512MB Radeon HD 5450 DDR3 Graphics Card with Low Profile Bracket) with this card so I can play some games in high resolution and high settings. I had a big dilemma whether or not I should replace 450W PSU in my case (CIT CSCIT1007 Micro ATX Case NEW Design 24pin SATA 450W - Black) with something more powerful. In the end I have decided to chance it and I did not upgrade it. Thanks to low power consumption of that card my system is stable and I was able to play titles like MW2, L4D2 and Portal 2 in resolution 1920x1080 with smooth frame-rate. My Windows index reads:

Desktop performance for Windows Aero: 7.5
3D business and gaming graphics performance: 7.5

To give you a bit more complete picture I am using that card on Asus P8P67-M PRO New B3 Rev Motherboard (P67 chipset uATX, Intel?s 1155, USB 3.0/Sata 6Gb/s & Dual Intelligent Processors ) with Intel Sandybridge i5-2500K Unlocked Core i5 Quad-Core Processor (3.30GHz, 6MB Cache, Socket 1155) and Corsair CMZ8GX3M2A1600C9 8GB 1600MHz CL9 DDR3 Vengeance Memory Two Module Kit.

I read somewhere that this model has a lot of room for overclocking however so far I did not need to do that since frame-rate in all games I have played was really good.

So far I am really pleased with that card, if you are in a market for mid-range GPU I think it's a very good option.
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on 8 August 2011
I recently bought this graphics card to replace my ageing Radeon 4670, So far, I'm impressed by the performance that this card gives, giving good solid FPS even in highly demanding games such as GTA 4, and it doesn't even seem to break a sweat in Dirt 2, staying at a solid 60 Fps.

The card comes well packaged, and despite being a somewhat large card, it fit perfectly into my case. I was surprised that the graphics card requires two 6-pin power connectors (in the reviews I had read on forums it stated that the card had only one 6-pin connector) However this is most likely a measure taken by asus to ensure maximum stability if you wish to overclock the card.

I was interested to find out how well this card performs with tesselation enabled too, I tested it in unigine heaven (a benchmarking program based around tesselation and directx 11) and was impressed that the card managed to keep an average fps of around 30, not bad for a mid-range card.

On the whole, impressive performance for the price, especially considering that this is a factory overclocked model. Would definitely recommend.
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on 19 June 2011
Two of these in a crossfire set-up are outstanding, not only are they great value, but when paired they out perform the pricey 5970 costing £400+.
So if it's bang for buck you're after, look no further than these as the 6850 are great cards and these Asus models can give you even more performance with their excellent over-clocking potential.
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on 3 March 2012
Simply put, this card represents absolutely fantastic value for money and excellent performance. Stays at around 35c degrees at idle in my system and maxes out at about 60c when under full strain. It handles games like Crysis 2 and Alan Wake superbly with frame-rates rarely dropping below 40fps. It looks excellent, and also stays very quiet. Over-clocking is as easy as moving a slider on your screen, although over-clocking isn't really necessary for me at the moment, as it comes pre-clocked at levels that will handle any game with ease.

So to conclude, if you're looking for a mid-range card for around the £100-£120, get this one, you really cannot get better value for money, you truly will not be disappointed!

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on 4 August 2011
This card is amazing! It gets a 7.7 in Windows Experience Index for anyone wondering. Loads of room to overclock. Excellent cooling (compared to other brand 6850s). Excellent price. My only complaint is the noise! My case fans are always on full (can't adjust them) so it was loud enough already but the 6850 made it worse! It's not deafening by any means but I was expecting it to be quieter. That being said I love this card! The most demanding game I have right now is Guild Wars but I'm getting ~120 fps with everything on high!

Recommended for anyone considering it! If you want a whisper-quiet PC this won't do. Everyone else; just buy it!
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on 23 April 2012
I like my PCs quiet and go to great effort on this. You're potentially hearing the thing at your feet for years so a few hours toning it down are well worth it.

Although this graphics card was great value for money I wouldn't call it quiet. From desktop to gaming the fans would ramp up a level. As they make a higher pitch than the typical case or CPU fan this is noticeable. If there was lots of onscreen action the fans would ramp up again and become a distraction. Put the card under load using something like OCCT and I would describe the noise as well past my tolerance.

I ended up modding this card with the ARCTIC Accelero Twin Turbo Pro (fits no problem). I don't expect a card like this to come with a Twin Frozr II but that stock lightweight cooler with a single fan was bare minimum.

After modding this card it was so quiet I threw on a 20% overclock and still couldn't get it louder than my case fans under OCCT. My temperature and fan speeds (from Catalyst Control Center using OCCT to load) are idle 38c fan speed 20% going to 70c with fan speed 33% at 100% load after 10mins. These temperatures are great and 33% fan is still pretty much inaudible from where I sit. The stock cooler would have been like a mini vacuum cleaner under this load.

I take a star off for this review as the stock cooling was bare minimum. I would have taken more off due to the hassle the Catalyst drivers gave me, but the noise, performance, overclockability when modded are so fine I'm now very happy with my Asus 6850 ;-)
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on 17 April 2012
Radeon HD6850 is already previous generation graphics chip but in it s current (less than 100£) orice category it is just a bargain. This is the price/performance sweet spot on the market during spring '12. The new ATI products in this price category replacing the 6850 are not as efficient but will of course go even deeper in the price range after few months on the market. If you are up to highest performing graphics then you could try HD6850 as a Crossfire assembly (HD6850 x2)although I have no experience of that with this card.

Particularly the Asus model of HD6850 has been notified by its low noise of the fan. The noise level in high performing cards has been challenging to reach but obviously Asus has been able to gain a design win. For a single graphics card combination this is a good purchase at time of writing this review. As the time goes forward the 6850 will cease from the supply and the price goes up. There are also other suppliers in HD6850 chip range going even below in price (like Sapphire, another interesting choice) and the main question then is how much weight one puts to the noise level of the system. Water cooling is one way to have a silent system and if that is in your targets then choose the cheapest HD6850 since there is no need for low noise fan. Without those plans the Asus HD6850 1GB is a very good choice for lower noise system with good performance. Technically a rather safe bet now money wise and has worked fine in my system.
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