The Radeon 4850 features a 625 MHz core clock and GDDR3 clock in excess of 2000MHz.
Corporate documentation explains that the 480 stream processors on the RV770
processor offer considerable enhancements over the 320 stream processors found
in the RV670 core, though AMD memos reveal little about how this is
The RV770 includes all the bells and whistles of the RV670 launched in November
2007: Shader Model 4.0, OpenGL 2.0, and DirectX 10.1. The only major
extension addition appears to be the addition of "Game Physics
processing" -- indicating a potential platform for AMD's
recent partnership with Havok.
The new Radeon lacks GDDR5 memory, promised
by an AMD announcement just weeks ago. Although the RV770 does support
GDDR5 memory, this initial launch consists exclusively of GDDR3
components. AMD documentation hints at the launch of a Radeon 4870 later
this summer, but it offered no comment on when it will eventually ship a GDDR5
If Radeon 4850 sounds familiar, that's because it is. The RV770-based
FireStream 9250, just
announced a few days ago, broke the 1 teraflops barrier using the same
graphics core. However, this paper-launched workstation card will retail
for more than $900 when it finally hits store shelves. The mainstream
Radeon 4850 offerings will ship and launch on the same day next week.
AMD partners claim the new card will not compete against the $600
GTX 200 just announced yesterday. Instead, AMD pits the Radeon 4850 against
the recently re-priced NVIDIA GeForce 9800 GTX. Distributors claim the
4850 will see prices as low as $199 at launch -- well under the $299
MSRP for GeForce 9800 GTX. More expensive versions of RV770 will
feature HDMI, audio pass-through and possibly the fabled Qimonda GDDR5 memory.
Specifications from Diamond Multimedia marketing material claim the new Radeon
will require a 450 Watt power supply for single card support; or 550 Watt power
for CrossFire mode.
Update 06/09/2008: As of this morning, AMD has lifted the embargo on its 4850 graphics cards. AMD's newest documentation claims the RV770 processor contains 800 shaders, but the card is not expected to show up on store shelves before the planned June 25 launch date.