ASUS Radeon HD 3850 X2 1GB Review - Mainstream Dual-GPU Option
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ASUS Brings X2 to the HD 3850
When AMD introduced the Radeon HD 3870 X2 1GB card in January of this year it was an attempt to become competitive once again with NVIDIA's high-end graphics cards like the 8800 GTX and 8800 Ultra. It was moderately successful, but of course the 3870 X2 required the power of two of AMD's 3870 GPUs and 1GB of total frame buffer (512MB to each GPU) to do it. Since then AMD hasn't released any new cards but NVIDIA has been actively getting back any ground they had lost in the various markets with the release of the 9600 GT, 9800 GX2 and the 9800 GTX. AMD's partners on the other hand appear to be TRYING to pick up the slack that AMD left dangling: first from Diamond with the less-than-successful Radeon 3870 1GB and now from ASUS.
ASUS' goals for this card are pretty simple: create an AMD-based graphics card that fits into the gap that exists between the Radeon HD 3870 512MB and the Radeon HD 3870 X2 1GB in terms of both price and performance. Some creative engineering and product positioning aim to do just that.
The ASUS EAH3850X2 1GB Graphics Card
Taking a look at the new ASUS EAH3850 X2 card you could be confused into thinking you were looking at another ASUS product that is nearly identical in appearance; the design is obviously identical though this time ASUS has ironed out the issues we saw before and you can actually buy this product too - what a novel idea!
lane PCIe 1.0 device for chip to chip communications; we obviously know
that the 3850 X2 (as well as the 3870 X2) card is a PCIe 1.0 card but
in reality that isn't making much of a difference in terms of
real-world GPU performance today.