ATI Radeon HD 5870 1GB Graphics Card and AMD Eyefinity Review
The Radeon HD 5800 series lineup
Now that we have gone over the architecture of the new AMD Evergreen GPU let's get down and dirty with the products themselves - what you will be able to buy and get into your hands on launch day.
Just as we saw with the Radeon HD 4870 launch last year, AMD is going for a "sweet spot" strategy in which they design a GPU for the performance segment and then address other areas based on that GPU. With the HD 4870 they released the HD 4850, 4830 and 4770 for the lower price points and also created the HD 4870 X2 dual-GPU card for the ultra-high end segment. It looks like AMD is again taking that approach as we'll see Hemlock dual-GPU cards out before the end of the year based on this roadmap.
Here is the magic diagram with most of the information you want to see. The ATI Radeon HD 5870 GPU will have 1600 shader processors running at 850 MHz - that is twice the shader units running at 100 MHz faster than the HD 4870. Memory clocks have increased from 900 MHz to 1200 MHz and overall memory bandwidth is up to 153.6 GB/s.
The Radeon HD 5850 (which we have yet to actually get our hands on) still runs with an impressive 1440 shader processors at 725 MHz and a 1000 MHz GDDR5 memory bus producing more bandwidth than the previous generation's high-end 4870 offering. The maximum board power of the HD 5850 is only 18 watts lower than that of the HD 5870 though idle power remains at an impressive 27 watts.
Both of the new graphics cards will have support for the new AMD Eyefinity technology that will allow games to span up to three displays all connected to a single board.
Though we do not have our hands on one yet, this puppy could be really impressive - the Radeon HD 5870 Eyefinity6 Edition card will sport 6 mini-DisplayPort outputs on it and was shown at the recent AMD gaming event in Oakland this month
. Expect to see this card in November.
The product lineup for this release isn't overly crowded, which keeps things easy to understand and grasp for the consumer. If you are on the lookout for a higher performing card than the HD 5870 then you can clearly see that the Hemlock offering will be out this year as will lower cost Juniper-based GPUs if that suits your fancy.