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  (Source: Amazon)

  (Source: Amazon)
AMD's newest is an alternative to NVIDIA's last generation high-end

Hot on the heels of NVIDIA's GTX 200 family launch, AMD will introduce its 55nm RV770-based Radeon 4850 next week. 

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 accomplished.

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 product.

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.



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RE: Seems...
By Belard on 6/20/2008 5:20:09 AM , Rating: 2
Bragging rights (even if not true) can help sell product. Its the same with CPUs. Look at Intel and AMD. Since VIA KT-133A chipset and AMD XP CPUs, AMD had CPUs that were generally faster than Pentium 4 (other than video encoding) and with AMD64, they continued to murder the Netburst technology of Intel. Yet, AMD slowly gained market share while Intel continue to play BLUE-MAN group ADs about how much faster their CPUs were. At AMD best in the summer of 2006, AMD had about 20% of the market with NO TV ads. Pretty much any store you went to, AMD was actually selling quite well. Remember, the $250 AMD64 2.2Ghz CPU was able to play games and do typical office work faster than Intel's $1000 Extreme P4s 3.2Ghz. Core2 came out, it was very cheap, far less than the P4 line and AMD CPUs and faster. The respect and market gains of AMD fell through the floor. It sucks because not ALL AMD CPUs are slower than all Intel CPUs. At various price points and cost of Motherboard with on-board graphics - the AMD setup ends up costing a lot less than intel. The Core2 design is not so much faster over AMD compared to when AMD was on top of P4s.

AMD should have known there is only so much brand loyality a person will handle. I generally prefer AMD, and for most people - its a great chip & setup for the price... just not the fastest. They screwed up on the X4 CPUs and with the Motherboard makers by not making sure things were up to spec. So using an X4 AMD CPU may cause the latest motherboard to blow up! For low-end to mid/high end, AMD is a better deal. For overclocking and top-speed, intel... but you'll still pay for it.

Gigabyte AMD 770 : $80 = PCIe 2.0 slots, RAID, Firewire
Gigabyte intel P35 : $90 = PCIe 1.0 slots.
Gigabyte intel P35 : $120 = PCIe 1.0 slots, RAID
Gigabyte intel P35 : $180 = PCIe 1.0 w/ 2 16x slots (one is electrical 4x) - RAID, Firewire.

Gigabyte intel X48 : $225 = PCIe 1.0 slots (2 16x), RAID, Firewire, eSata (bracket)
Gigaybe AMD 790fx : $180 = PCIe 2.0 slots (2 16x), RAID, FW, eSata.

With that said, because the C2Q 6600 is $190 with a plain $100 board, its a BETTER deal than buying an AMD X4 CPU and will be my next purchase. I get a cheaper, faster and more reliable system. But I'll be looking at dropping in the AMD 4850 video card :)

Its no secret that selling in the $100~200 is the SWEET spot for the industry. yeah, they sell a whole lot of $50~100, but those are rarely gamers. Pretty much every video card I've bought has been $125~225.

I agree thou, its silly to spend an extra $1000~2000 to go from 80fps to 130fps on a 24" LCD monitor.


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