Print 23 comment(s) - last by ImSpartacus.. on Mar 22 at 7:24 PM

Radeon RV670  (Source: Tech Report)
AMD Radeon HD 3830 to compete with NVIDIA 8600GTS in price and performance

There's been a great deal of news regarding AMD's HD 3800 series of high-end desktop video cards including predictions of upcoming price cuts to compete with NVIDIA's 9600 GT mid-range product. The two models AMD currently offers in this high-end Radeon line of graphics cards are the HD 3850 and HD 3870.

To better compete with the recently launched GeForce 9600 GT, AMD will launch a new model in the HD 3800 series with a more modest configuration than its two older counterparts.

AMD's Radeon HD 3830 will be based on the RV670 core and will feature a 128-bit memory bus, potentially providing roughly half the memory bandwidth of the HD 3850 and 3870 depending on the type and speed of memory used.

All other features of the 55nm RV670 core are still included: DirectX 10.1, PCIe 2.0 and UVD.  The GPU still features 320 stream processors like the HD 3850 and HD 3870 revisions.

According to recent reports, the HD 3830 will feature up to 256 MB of memory and come with 320 stream processors as well as 16 texture filtering units and 16 raster operators to match the HD 3850/3870 models. This is compared to the 32 stream processors, 16 texture filtering units and 8 raster operators of the 8600GTS's G84 core.

Pricing of the Radeon HD 3830 scheduled on roadmaps in the $120-130 range, however with Radeon HD 3850 prices quickly approaching that, 3830 street prices could easily hit the $100 price point. 

AMD roadmaps peg the launch of Radeon HD 3830 at mid-April, with initial shipments likely not hitting the U.S. until several weeks later. 

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More good stuff
By eye smite on 3/21/2008 11:57:26 AM , Rating: 5
Was reading about this card on Tech Report, looks like a nice enough card, and if it does hyrbrid crossfire with the 780G amd boards, should be real nice combo to have.

RE: More good stuff
By StevoLincolnite on 3/21/2008 12:22:15 PM , Rating: 2
I would love to see this thing paired up with the 3850, would be good for those on a budget who want a "Whole" system first, then need a bit of a boost later on down the line by just dropping in a 3850, And if some of you don't realize the 3850, 3870, 3870 X2 are all compatible with each other in Crossfire mode.

RE: More good stuff
By therealnickdanger on 3/21/2008 12:56:35 PM , Rating: 5
Like the article says, though, the 3830's proposed price-point places it near the 3850, so why not just get another 3850? I dunno, "budget SLI" never seems to make sense to me. You need a proper SLI mobo and PSU to do it right, which kinda pushes you out of the "budget" arena in the first place.

Releasing this as a competitor to the 8600GT at $130 sounds dumb, since the 8600GT is enjoying $60 pricing. The 3830 as a sub-$100 card would be a phenominal purchase, though, especially as a low-rise variant for HTPCs and other mini-PCs. Any word on the power consumption and heat output of the 3830? I'm certain it won't need active cooling...

RE: More good stuff
By Captain Orgazmo on 3/21/2008 8:22:33 PM , Rating: 2
It's supposed to help AMD compete against the 9600 not the 8600 (which is a fairly poor mid-range card, while the 38xx series and 9600 are budget high end parts).

As far as cooling, this is just speculation, but it will probably have the same single-slot type solution as the 3850, as it has the same core. This is not a low end media pc card. If you want an excellent low form factor HTPC card with passive cooling, HDMI and HD video acceleration, look at the 34xx series; they are selling for less than $50 some places.

RE: More good stuff
By StevoLincolnite on 3/22/2008 5:59:58 AM , Rating: 2
It also depends where you live, But I have found if you shop right and look for a bargain you can pick up some decent Crossfire boards which are pretty well priced against the non-crossfire brethren.

And the price difference may only be $30 or what not, but here the price differences of hardware can get fairly extreme in some cases between hardware.

Still it's the possibility of "Buy the one now that you can afford, in the budget" then when you have the money saved "Buy the second card". - I don't about some of you, but if I always looked at getting better hardware for only 20 - 50 bucks on top of what I had planned for, by the end of it I would have bought a stupidly powerful machine that ended up costing me more than 500 bucks over my budget.

RE: More good stuff
By clovell on 3/21/2008 1:52:29 PM , Rating: 2
I didn't realize the Crossfire compatibility across the 3000-series. Thanks!

RE: More good stuff
By SlyNine on 3/21/2008 11:57:07 PM , Rating: 2
Can any one confirm this, I know that the IGP can crossfire with other videocards that differ in design. But I am unaware of a 3850's ability to crossfire with the 3870 AND i know for a fact if you try to use a IGP with the 3850 the IGP will dissable its self.

RE: More good stuff
By ComatoseDelirium on 3/22/2008 1:14:13 AM , Rating: 2
3850's 3870's and the 3870 X2 can all work in mix-matched Crossfire

RE: More good stuff
By wien on 3/22/2008 4:06:02 AM , Rating: 2
But they will all run at the speed of the slowest card. So a 3870 X2 with a 3850, will effectively run like a 3850 X3.

RE: More good stuff
By ImSpartacus on 3/22/2008 11:07:38 AM , Rating: 2
Hmm, So I guess there's a point at which the 3870X2 > "3850X3". I still respect the compatibility effort.

I would've liked AMD to say to people "hey, we're gonna have a 3870X2 and this crazy crossfire thing in like 6 months so if you get a single 3870 for now, you can get a 3870X2 later and turn your system into a high end system without wasting a videocard.

By diego10arg on 3/21/2008 3:06:37 PM , Rating: 2
According to recent reports, the HD 3830 will feature a configuration with up to 256 MB of memory but will feature 320 stream processors , 16 texture filtering units and raster operators to match the HD 3850/3870 models, compared to 32 stream processors , 16 texture filtering units and 8 raster operators on the 8600GTS's G84 core

I am not in the gaming side of the moon, so I may be wrong but either way this looks like a little typin' error!

Anyway, the cheapest the better for consumers :)

RE: Typo?
By jaj22 on 3/21/2008 5:04:01 PM , Rating: 2
The 38x0 series have 80 4-way SIMD shader units (hence 320), while the 8600s have 32 scalar shader units. The nVidia shader units run at about twice the clock rate, and may well have other throughput advantages, but there's no accepted way of measuring this.

RE: Typo?
By Warren21 on 3/21/2008 6:21:31 PM , Rating: 2
64 5-way SIMD units. The problem with this design is that they are dependant greatly on how well the driver can make sure each unit is busy, where the nV scalar units always operate at 100%, 20-100% efficieny is the range of the R6x0 units. 40-60% efficiency is more prevalent.

RE: Typo?
By ats on 3/21/2008 9:33:03 PM , Rating: 2
if you are going to correct someone at least get it right...

R600/RV670 has 20 16 wide simd units organized as 4 sets of 5 simd units.

G80/G92 doesn't have any scalar units. It has 16 8 wide SIMD units using time division scheduling to handle multi-component operations.

Neither design has "Scalar units" and neither design has more than low double digits processors. With the actual number of processors being 4 for R600/RV670 and 16 for G80/G92.

And if Nvidia could always operate at 100% they'd all be in vegas every day living the good life instead of stuck in front of a computer trying to do better.

RE: Typo?
By SlyNine on 3/22/2008 12:00:08 AM , Rating: 2
Point is a paper comparison of Nvidia/ATI cards is, well pointless. Only benchmarks can tell you what one is better and even then *gasp Drivers are always changing.

By MrBungle123 on 3/21/2008 12:02:48 PM , Rating: 2
To better compete with NVIDIA's GeForce 8600GTS while looking at a price to performance ratio, AMD will launch a new model in the HD 3800 series with a more modest configuration than its two older counterparts.

I thought the 8600 cards were in the process being phased out for the 9600GT?

RE: Um...
By Hexus on 3/21/2008 12:12:39 PM , Rating: 2
You're right it is, this confuses me as well, with the 9600GT being cheaper than a 8600GTS was a few months ago with a marginal performance increase, I would think they would be compeating withe the 9600 not the 8600.

RE: Um...
By ImSpartacus on 3/22/2008 7:24:13 PM , Rating: 2
the entire 8600 series is a lost cause. no amount of price drops will ever make them worth using. hell' they could hand the stupid things out and i still would pass.

By Amiga500 on 3/21/2008 12:38:28 PM , Rating: 2
It would mean we have a faster top end part (and faster top-bottom spectrum) instead of "advancing" backwards.


By GodisanAtheist on 3/21/2008 2:26:41 PM , Rating: 2
I hear ya. AMD should be releasing faster parts, not slower ones. A 3890 would be nice.

By MagnumMan on 3/21/2008 3:10:28 PM , Rating: 2
If you want a faster part you can modify your 3870. I voltmodded a 3870 (hard mod, not pencil) and with the stock cooler I have it running 920/1226, up from stock which is 777/1126. (Under load it approaches 90 degrees C however). With a Phenom at 2.53GHz I am getting 3dMark scores in the low 11000 range now. So I would say there is some headroom in the design for them to pump up the Vcore and release a part at 900MHz to compete with the latest stuff from Nvidia when it becomes necessary. This is why I am going to not only voltmod the GPU and memory on my water cooled quad 3870 rig (K9A2 Platinum) but I am going to also upgrade most of the larger caps. Hopefully I can get quad crossfire running with 1GHz on every card. Then my Phenom at 2.75GHz can *really* hobble my benchmark scores. :> It is only a matter of time before some manufacturers or some enterprising soul decided to go into business modding these for people.

HTPC use?
By UNCjigga on 3/21/2008 1:43:55 PM , Rating: 2
Well if they clock it slower than 3850/3870 and if 128-bit bus helps cut power consumption, this might do well in HTPC setups. Hopefully the reference design utilizes a single-slot, low profile cooler unlike 3850/3870. I'm looking for something that fits in my Shuttle XPC!

RE: HTPC use?
By clovell on 3/21/2008 1:50:26 PM , Rating: 2
It'd be nice if vendors can fit it onto a low-profile card, too. That'd really help Hybrid Crossfire with 780G in HTPCs.

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