Summary: It looks like AMD has listened to the countless requests for a cheaper HD 6950 card. With just 1 GB of memory, instead of 2 GB, the card retails for around $40 less than its big brother. Even though memory size might suggest otherwise, we have seen absolutely no evidence of reduced performance. In no game, not even in Metro 2033 or Crysis, and no, not even at 2560x1600. This means that 1 GB of video memory is still a viable choice for a high-end gaming card today.
Pros: Same performance as HD 6950 2 GB, Can be modded to HD 6970, Great overclocking potential, Dual BIOS switch, Native full-size HDMI output, Support for DirectX 11
Cons: High power consumption, higher than HD 6950 2 GB, Noisy fan under load, Higher temperatures than on 2 GB version, High power draw in Blu-ray playback, CCC Overdrive limits too low, Power draw limiter could complicate advanced overclocking, DirectX 11 relevance limited at this time, No support for CUDA / PhysX
Conclusion: When all was said and done we felt gamers couldn't go wrong with either the GeForce GTX 570 or Radeon HD 6970 . Both cards provide an impressive level of performance, relatively good value, great efficiency, and both heavily outclassed their previous generation counterparts. The Radeon HD 6950 provides a middle ground of sorts, with a price tag of $299 .
Conclusion: Priced at just under $300, the AMD Radeon HD 6950 would seem well poised to capture the cost-conscious sensible-enthusiast market, but this video card doesn't offer the performance to turn heads.
Pros: Good performance. Support for full range of new technologies, including DirectX 11 and Enhanced Quality Anti-Aliasing.
Cons: Competing cards offer better value or stronger performance.
Summary: We are pitting the new Radeon HD 6950 1GB video card against the Radeon HD 6950 2GB version and a GeForce GTX 560 Ti in apples-to-apples testing to see how they compare. We test at 1920x1200 and 2560x1600 to push memory limitations and find which card provides the best gaming value.
Conclusion: AMD's Radeon HD 6950 1GB graphics card's arrival is an obvious move to scupper NVIDIA's plans for performance leadership at the £200 price point. Looking very much like its 2GB-equipped counterpart and performing nigh-on identically in a wide range of benchmarks, the 1GB card is a sensible choice if your budget is absolutely limited to said £200.
Excerpt: There's a war going on in the world of mid-range graphics cards, and every month claims a new victim. March had the AMD Radeon HD 6950 , which won a Best Buy, followed by the Nvidia GeForce GTX 560 Ti , which was slightly cheaper and faster if you were prepared to overclock it. This month sees AMD's response - a slightly cut-down HD 6950 with 1GB instead of 2GB RAM, for around £40 less than the 2GB version. It's also around the same price as the GTX 560 Ti.
Conclusion: It isn’t often that we get two cards competing cards launching on the same day but that’s exactly what we have here today. On one hand NVIDIA is showcasing the GTX 560 Ti; a card that brings high performance at a mid-range price. Meanwhile, AMD needed to respond and that’s exactly what they did with the Radeon HD 6950 1GB.
Excerpt: The new AMD Radeon HD 6970 may be the flagship card in the range, but in our experience the smaller siblings are just as worthy of your consideration. In this case we have the HD 6950, which sits just behind AMD’s new behemoth, providing most of the performance for a chunk less cash. The HD 6950 is fairly close to the HD 6970 in terms of specification, with three key differences.