Lattice QCD with staggered fermions at strong coupling has long been studied in a dual representation to circumvent the finite baryon density sign problem.
Monte Carlo simulations at finite temperature and density require anisotropic lattices.
Recent results that established the non-perturbative functional dependence between the bare anisotropy $\gamma$ and the physical anisotropy $a_s/a_t$ in the chiral limit are now extended to finite quark mass. We illustrate how the calibration of the anisotropy works and discuss the consequences of the anisotropy on thermodynamic observables. We also show first results on the energy density and pressure in the QCD phase diagram in the strong coupling regime.