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Refrence vs non-refrence

post #1 of 13
Thread Starter 
I dont know too much about video cards and I kinda like a noob for asking this but, What is a refrence version and non-refrence version.....???? I've heard that refrence versions are better, but in what ways?... can someone explain the diffrence and pros and cons plz?..... yet again srry fer the n00b question tongue.gif
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post #2 of 13
Reference versions and Non reference versions are pretty similar however Id go for a non reference just cause they normaly have fancy features (more vrms, fancy vrms and buttons).
Non reference may also have trouble when it comes to finding waterblocks or aftermarket coolers.

Quote from striker410,sums up well
Quote:
Referrence design
Pros
+Often cheaper
+Often use centrifugal fans to exhaust heat out of the case
+More readily available
+More vendors to choose from
+More compact
Cons
-Can be noisy
-They tend to run hotter than non-reference cards
-Don't overclock as high
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post #3 of 13
Thread Starter 
ok but what is refrence version??? I have 2x6870's.... is a refrence version xfx? or AMD??? plz clairify foe me redface.gif
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post #4 of 13
Reference is any card that is build exactly how AMD or Nvidia's standards says. Non-reference is based off of own standards. Some reference cards are better than non-reference, but it really depends.
    
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post #5 of 13
Thread Starter 
thanx for the info but I'm still not too sure.... how can you tell if its a refrence of not? I have an xfx 6870 and a sapphire 6870.... how would I go about checking them?
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post #6 of 13
Link where you bought them and we can tell (comparing the boards / screw holes)if its reference or non-reference.
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post #7 of 13
If the board has the same layout as the original, it is reference. If it for instance an MSI Twin Frozer card, that is non reference. If it is a Saphire Toxic or Vapor-X, non reference, etc for different brands
    
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post #8 of 13
More often than not, reference boards are better than non-reference.

Manufacturers alter the initial spec by shifting lanes around to fit their own (often lower quality to reduce price) components or making holes for non-ref coolers.

You can tell a non-ref AMD board because it will not have the AMD logo on the business side near the PCIe pins.
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post #9 of 13
If the card has a cooler like the one pictured below it is reference. There are some cards that have non reference coolers, but still run reference boards. Non reference boards often times will change up the display ports. If it has that cooler picture below though you are pretty much guaranteed that it is a reference board to the best of my knowledge. I have never seen a non reference board use a reference cooler.

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post #10 of 13
Thread Starter 
sapphire card
http://canadacomputers.com/product_info.php?cPath=43_557_558&item_id=043593
300
***************************
xfx card
looks like it was taken off the site and replaced with another one but it looks like this
472
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