Overclockers.ua has leaked slides which strongly suggest that Zalman will soon be entering the graphics card market. Zalman is mostly known for their coolers and their CPU coolers are one of the most popular ones at NewEgg; they also sell power supplies and SSDs. At least initially, Zalman will be AMD's partner. The slides have only AMD 6870, 6850 and 6770 listed, but it's possible that we will see more models when this becomes official. Here is a table of the GPUs.

Specifications of Zalman's Graphics Card Lineup
Model HD6870-H HD6850-H HD6770-H
GPU AMD 6870 AMD 6850 AMD 6770
Stream Processors 1120 960 800
Texture Units 56 48 40
ROPs 32 32 16
Core Clock 900MHz 775MHz 850MHz
Effective Memory Clock 4200MHz 4000MHz 4800MHz
Memory (GDDR5) 1GB 1GB 1GB
Memory Bus Width 256-bit 256-bit 128-bit
Price $190 $168 $124

The cards are all running at stock frequencies. Zalman is well known for their cooling solutions, and we expected their GPUs to have a beefier cooler and possibly be overclocked as well. To be honest, the cards look vapid. The cooler design is very reference and there are plenty of cards with similar designs, for example the HIS 6850 Fan. That is not to say the cooling system is bad, it's just nothing special.

There are already plenty of AMD board partners so succeeding requires you to be different, usually either in price or cooling performance. Given the prices, Zalman isn't competing in that category, which leaves them with cooling performance. Zalman definitely has the experience in cooling systems, including GPU coolers, and hopefully we will see some products that are more innovative from them in the future. 

Shipments are set to start next Tuesday, December 13th.

Source: Overclockers.ua via TechPowerUp

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  • cervantesmx - Thursday, December 8, 2011 - link

    I have to say I did not see this coming. I'm glad to hear it though. Zalman has not yet let me down on CPU coolers and misc components I've purchased from them.
  • ckryan - Thursday, December 8, 2011 - link

    Well, putting out mediocre SSDs was a starting point as well, and it's not really blossomed into anything. GPUs I could see -- good coolers would go a long way toward convincing me of their viability.
  • Filiprino - Thursday, December 8, 2011 - link

    But, why they don't wait until AMD launches its 7000 HD series?

    As for Zalman products, I can't speak well about them. I bouht a PSU and it died nearly insantly. Its replacement only lasted 4 years. It was a ZM-600HP, not an el cheapo thing.

    That experience didn't give me a solid image of durable products.
  • AbdullahG1997 - Thursday, December 8, 2011 - link

    I'd assume it's just to actually get a start in the GPU market. I don't see them selling the HD 6XXX series in large quantities, but the HD 7XXX series is a window of opportunity for them as they make their name in the market with the HD 6XXX series.
  • StevoLincolnite - Thursday, December 8, 2011 - link

    Well they already make coolers for the video card market, the old Passive HIS Radeon 4650's used a VNF100 Zalman passive cooler for instance.
    I would like them to do some funky cooler designs though to differentiate themselves from all the other cards on the market to make themselves look more unique as a brand.

    I'm happy about this move, more competition is never a bad thing even if I will continue to stick with MSI.
  • kyuu - Thursday, December 8, 2011 - link

    C'mon Zalman... give us some awesome cooler designs on some AMD boards. None of this pansy 'Me too!" stuff.
  • totalapps - Friday, December 9, 2011 - link

    will be interesting to try this new type of graphic card
  • piroroadkill - Friday, December 9, 2011 - link

    Zalman should be doing something special here, using their cooling brand to do something.. cooling.

    How about always being the first to market with the fastest passive cards?
  • Kugar - Friday, December 9, 2011 - link

    I would like to see Zalman offer some silent passively cooled HTPC video cards. I'd buy that.
  • Golgatha - Friday, December 9, 2011 - link

    is that I'm willing to put down a $50 premium on a card if it comes with better than stock cooling. Arctic Cooling coolers typically cost less than $50 and cool superbly well. Same with Zalman, except some of their coolers are just priced into the stratosphere. Give me a stock card that runs 70°C or less at load while making less noise than the reference cooler for a $50 premium and I'll buy your cards exclusively forsaking all others.

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