Gamers who want to play 3D games but don't mind dialing down the graphics settings will be happy with the Sapphire Radeon HD 6670 Ultimate, critics report. The card runs most games -- even demanding action shooter games -- at 30-plus fps in 1,920-by-1,080-pixel resolution, but you'll need to adjust the graphics quality to medium settings for most titles. Sapphire's "Ultimate" cooling solution replaces the 6670's stock fan with a large heatsink, which keeps temperatures low while running silently, but at the expense of blocking a second PCI-E slot. Gamers who desire better frame rates and uncompromised graphics settings -- and don't mind a bit of fan noise -- would probably be better off with the MSI N560GTX-Ti Twin Frozr II/OC (*Est. $245).
Like most manufacturers, Sapphire's customer service doesn't have a sterling reputation. Tales of woe abound online, with one TomsHardware.com contributor calling the company's service a "nightmare." Sapphire cards aren't known to break very often, however, and owners are generally very happy with them as long as they work. But don't lose your receipt; Sapphire covers products for two years from the date of purchase, and shipping and handling fees are sometimes required.
Several reviewers recommend the stock Radeon HD 6670 video card, but TweakTown.com, Hexus.net and HardwareHeaven.com cover the Sapphire Radeon HD 6670 Ultimate specifically in in-depth, hands-on reviews full of comparisons to other cards and benchmark testing. You can see a handful of user reports at Newegg.com.
Hexus.net sums up the sound levels of the silent-running Sapphire Radeon HD 6670 Ultimate in its opening title: "Is this thing even switched on?" The card hovers around 30 fps in most games and its multimedia performance is praised, too. The total package performs well enough to earn a Recommended award.
Review: Sapphire Radeon HD 6670 1GB Ultimate Fanless Graphics Card Review, Tarinder Sandhu, June 9, 2011
The Sapphire Radeon HD 6670 Ultimate earns a 94 percent rating and a Best Features award in this 16-page review. "This is an excellent solution for people who want something that's priced well, [are] going to play older games at a smooth 60 fps resolution at the least 1680x1050, and would love to have something that's completely silent," Shane Baxtor writes. Newer games post much lower frame rates.
Review: Sapphire Radeon HD 6670 Ultimate 1GB Video Card Review, Shane Baxtor, June 16, 2011
The Sapphire Radeon HD 6670 Ultimate earns perfect marks for design and value, and wins a Recommended award from HardwareHeaven.com. "A perfect card for gamers on a budget, those building a media system or anyone looking for a low-noise card that can power three screens for productivity," writes Stuart Davidson.
Review: Sapphire Ultimate Radeon HD 6670 Graphics Cards Review, Stuart Davidson, May 25, 2011
Only about a dozen owners weigh in here on the Sapphire Radeon HD 6670 Ultimate, but all are mostly or completely pleased. No one rates it at less than 4 eggs out of 5, and the majority gives it a perfect score.
Review: Sapphire Ultimate 100326UL Radeon HD 6670, Contributors to Newegg.com, As of April 2012