Feeds
90%
Sapphire Vapor-X

Sapphire Vapor-X HD 4850 vapour-cooled graphics card

The cooler that turns a Vindaloo into a Korma

  • alert
  • submit to reddit

Secure remote control for conventional and virtual desktops

Review The Sapphire Vapor-X HD 4850 is a reference Radeon HD 4850 with an after-market cooler. That might not sound like a big deal, but Sapphire has come up with something special.

Most graphics card manufacturers try to differentiate their products from the competition and they often use the trick of changing the reference cooler for their own design to add some visual impact. Sapphire has plenty of history in this department and seems to be constantly developing new coolers for its range of AMD ATI Radeon HD-based graphics cards.

The starting point with the HD 4850 is the reference ATI cooler:

Reference Radeon HD 4850

It's very compact. The GPU and memory are covered by a copper heatsink with a slim line cooling fan at the far end that draws air across the heatsink. This allows the HD 4850 to be manufactured as a single-slot design but the downside is that the cooler sheds its heat inside the casing and it runs unpleasantly hot at all times. Once the HD 4850 has warmed up, the GPU operates at a constant 80-82°C regardless of whether your PC is displaying the Windows desktop or working hard playing Crysis.

We measured the temperature of the body of the graphics card at 60°C so we’re talking about a hefty slab of metal and plastic that is working hard to heat up the guts of your PC.

Sapphire has made a number of attempts to overcome this antisocial behaviour starting with its Dual Slot cooler:

Sapphire dual-slot cooler

This is a conventional design that locates the heatsink and fan directly over the GPU and the relatively large fan is able to operate quietly while still keeping the HD 4850 under control. As the name suggests, the Dual Slot cooler increases the size of the graphics card but it also does away with the copper heatsink that retains so much heat in the body of the reference graphics card.

New hybrid storage solutions

More from The Register

next story
Apple iPhone 6: Missing sapphire glass screen FAIL explained
They just cannae do it in time, says analyst
Half a BILLION in the making: Bungie's Destiny reviewed
It feels very familiar - but it's still good
Oh noes, fanbois! iPhone 6 Plus shipments 'DELAYED' in the UK
Is EMBIGGENED Apple mobile REALLY that popular?
Apple's big bang: iPhone 6, ANOTHER iPhone 6 Plus and WATCH OUT
Let's >sigh< see what Cupertino has been up to for the past year
Huawei ditches new Windows Phone mobe plans, blames poor sales
Giganto mobe firm slams door shut on Microsoft. OH DEAR
Phones 4u website DIES as wounded mobe retailer struggles to stay above water
Founder blames 'ruthless network partners' for implosion
Apple's SNEAKY plan: COPY ANDROID. Hello iPhone 6, Watch
Sizes, prices and all – but not for the wrist-o-puter
Get your Indian Landfill Android One handsets - they're only SIXTY QUID
Cheap and deafening mobes for the subcontinental masses
prev story

Whitepapers

Secure remote control for conventional and virtual desktops
Balancing user privacy and privileged access, in accordance with compliance frameworks and legislation. Evaluating any potential remote control choice.
Saudi Petroleum chooses Tegile storage solution
A storage solution that addresses company growth and performance for business-critical applications of caseware archive and search along with other key operational systems.
High Performance for All
While HPC is not new, it has traditionally been seen as a specialist area – is it now geared up to meet more mainstream requirements?
Security for virtualized datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.
Providing a secure and efficient Helpdesk
A single remote control platform for user support is be key to providing an efficient helpdesk. Retain full control over the way in which screen and keystroke data is transmitted.