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Two-thirds of the total available market is in the sub-$100 segment

(Click to enlarge)
Targets MMO and casual gamers

As much as technology enthusiasts will talk up the latest and greatest graphics cards, around two-thirds of desktop graphics cards sold around the world are priced at less than $100. Any new graphics technology that is introduced must eventually reach this critical market in order to truly be dominant. DirectX 11 is no different, and ATI plans to address the sub-$100 market with today's launch of the Radeon HD 5670.

ATI had previously launched the Radeon HD 5700 series targeting the mainstream performance segment between $100-$200 in October, and has had great success as the only DirectX 11 solution in that market. Those cards use a 40nm Juniper chip that is half the size of the Cypress chips used in the Radeon HD 5800 series. This has enabled a boost in yields and volume to the market, enabling these low price points.

The Radeon HD 5670 attacks the mainstream value segment using similar techniques. The Redwood XT GPU itself is only 104mm2, with a total transistor count of 627 million. Power consumption is impressively low at 61 watts at load and 14 watts at idle. Radeon 5670 cards will be the first DirectX 11 cards to fit in a single slot solution, and passive cooling may even be an option later this year when Add-In-Board partners start tinkering with their own designs.

Massively Multiplayer Online (MMO) games have brought a lot of new PC gamers into the upgrade
market, but many of them are uncomfortable with PCIe power connectors or may not have the necessary power supplies needed for more powerful solutions. ATI thinks that this new card will be perfect for them as it will be able to replace most of the integrated or value graphics included in most low-end PCs.

GDDR5 graphics memory will be standard, although sizes will vary to accommodate different price points. The 512MB version will be available for $99, while the 1GB version will sell for around $119 due to the high price of GDDR5 (fueled by demand from other DX11 cards).

ATI is touting its Eyefinity multi-monitor technology, which you would not expect for this price point. Current reference cards use a DVI port, HDMI port, and DisplayPort to achieve three outputs, but some AIB partners may choose to support the obsolete VGA connector. The card itself can support four monitor outputs, but it seems those same partners would rather wait for a new reference design from ATI.

The graphics arms of AMD is hoping to dispel nagging rumors about yields on its 40nm process by pushing massive volume into this mainstream launch. DailyTech has been told that there are at least 50,000 Redwood XT GPUs available at launch, and more are being produced every day. ATI has sold more than 2 million DirectX 11 GPUs so far, and expects to double that number over the next few months as it moves into the mainstream value and Mobility Radeon segments.

ATI will also be launching new graphics cards in the Radeon HD 5500 series and Radeon HD 5400 series next month that will target the value market. The Radeon 5500 series will have a TDP of less than 50 watts, while the Radeon 5450 will be available at launch with a passively cooled solution.



ATI Radeon HD 5870

ATI Radeon HD 5850

ATI Radeon HD 5770

ATI Radeon HD 5750

ATI Radeon HD 5670

Stream Processors






Texture Units












Core Clock






Memory Clock

1.2GHz (4.8GHz data rate) GDDR5

1GHz (4GHz data rate) GDDR5

1.2GHz (4.8GHz data rate) GDDR5

1.15GHz (4.6GHz data rate) GDDR5

1000MHz (4000MHz data rate) GDDR5

Memory Bus Width






Frame Buffer




1GB / 512MB

1GB / 512MB

Transistor Count












Price Point




$149 / $129

$119 / $99


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nvidia where are you?
By riottime on 1/14/2010 11:08:20 AM , Rating: 2
omg. where is the competition? nvidia just squatting and letting ati make all the money? i sure hope fermi is super duper when it's released in 2 months or nvidia might have to file for bankruptcy protection. a 6 months lead by ati is going to be hard to beat by nvidia.

RE: nvidia where are you?
By Mitch101 on 1/14/2010 11:54:58 AM , Rating: 2
It is interesting to see NVIDIA missing product cycles this time around like ATI did a few times.

NVIDIA's ION and TEGRA/TEGRA2 will keep them afloat as well as PS3 sales which are picking up.

My concern with NVIDIA is that FERMI is a BIG chip aimed for the crown (Top end). For the low to mid line the FERMI might be too much silicon to produce a cost effective low to mid end so I suspect we will see NVIDIA remark some existing chips with some tweeks and maybe a manufacturing shrink. I think ATI did the smarter of the two and make a more modular chip design that they can increase the number of cores to cover the low end to a high end.

ATI also rumored to have the 5890 to combat Fermi when its released. Not 100% sure the 5890 is the X2 version Ive seen conflicting information that suggests its not so we might even see a 5890x2. But Fermi could go X2 also.

Fermi is also rumored to run very hot which might be an issue for some. It is for me my office already gets warm and with heat comes fan noise and I like silent.

I wouldn't count them out and hope they don't because we need the competition. Like we need AMD to keep Intel prices low we need NVIDIA to keep ATI/AMD low.

RE: nvidia where are you?
By omnicronx on 1/14/2010 12:42:40 PM , Rating: 2
It is interesting to see NVIDIA missing product cycles this time around like ATI did a few times.
The position seems to flip back and forth. When DX9 was released, ATI pretty much in the same position as they really controlled the market with their 9*** series cards. The position reversed with DX10, this time around NVidia was the major partner, and had faster and better DX10 cards before ATI.. So its not really a surprise that along comes DX11, and ATI is in the forefront once again..

RE: nvidia where are you?
By Samus on 1/15/2010 12:54:08 AM , Rating: 2
ATI was slow to DirectX 10 intentionally while waiting for Microsoft to finish the SDK for 10.1 (which nVidia missed by over two years)

RE: nvidia where are you?
By GodisanAtheist on 1/14/10, Rating: 0
RE: nvidia where are you?
By therealnickdanger on 1/15/2010 9:03:20 AM , Rating: 2
Additionally, Nvidia is absolutely handing ATI its own arse in the mobile graphics arena

Not according to this:

NVIDIA may rule the mobile high-end, but ATI rules the roost for total marketshare of discrete mobile GPUs. NVIDIA's high-end is now is some serious danger - if AMD's performance slides are to be believed.

RE: nvidia where are you?
By Trickydicky on 1/14/10, Rating: 0
"It looks like the iPhone 4 might be their Vista, and I'm okay with that." -- Microsoft COO Kevin Turner

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