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Sapphire HD 6950 Still Unlockable?

Last response: in Graphics & Displays
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June 20, 2012 3:08:15 AM

Hello, I am building a new budget gaming computer soon, and was originally planning on getting a HD 7850, although I discovered that I would not be able to get a copy of Windows, and that I would have to purchase it, this cut into by budget, and I had to downgrade my parts I had chosen out.

I could not lower the price of many other parts, as they were already quite cheap, and found that I only have a budget of 200$ for a video card, after searching for a while, I came across the HD 6950 on sale, and thought it was a good price, but I am not sure if these cards are still able to unlock the shaders with. If the shaders are unlockable, then it would be in similar performance to the HD 7850, and I wouldn't be taking much of a performance hit.

This is the card in question - http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Thanks again, and if there is another card that is a better buy, for the same price, please tell me of it.
June 20, 2012 3:15:33 AM

The extra hardware on the 6950 could only be unlocked on very early production models. This ability was removed after only a month or two
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June 20, 2012 3:32:56 AM

PM sent. But yes they laser cut the extra shaders to prevent the 6950 to unlock to 6970.
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June 20, 2012 3:37:08 AM

After a little while they stopped just locking the shaders and started actually laser cutting them off of the chip. They are no longer doing it that way.

Either way, most of the early models came with the reference coolers, which are not that great. The cooler on this model is much better and will be much nicer for overclocking the card. Ones like mine that you could unlock the shaders on heat up nicely, because the reference cooler sucks and sounds like a jet.

Either way, the card is still a power house, and at that price is the best buy there is right now.
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June 20, 2012 3:44:22 AM

I have that same card, and no it is not unlockable. Overclocks very easily and takes it like a champ, though.
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June 20, 2012 3:47:55 AM

Agreed with the post above. Only early production models were able to do that and now it has been laser cut. Still a good card though.
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