Sapphire Radeon X850 XT PE: AGP 8X - HotHardware

Sapphire Radeon X850 XT PE: AGP 8X

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Although the transition to PCI Express is in full swing, the huge installed base of AGP equipped systems is still a major market that's continually being targeted by every major video card manufacturer. As proof of this, we present you with Sapphire's new AGP Radeon X850XT Platinum Edition. This card sports nearly the exact same feature set, and has its core and memory clocked at exactly the same speeds, as its PCI Express based counterpart. If you've got a system equipped with an AGP slot that is in need of a major video upgrade, but don't want to scrap your trusty motherboard that's served you well all this time, the Sapphire AGP Radeon X850XT Platinum Edition may just be in your future.  We ran this card though the gauntlet with a long list of games, and found it to be quite the performer. Read on and take a look, you won't be disappointed - we promise.

  

Sapphire's ATI Radeon X850 XT Platinum Edition (AGP 8X)
Features & Specifications

ATi Radeon X850 XT Platinum Edition
_540MHz engine
_.13 micron copper low-k
_1.18GHz memory data rate
_256-bit memory interface
_256MB GDDR3 memory
_16 pixel pipes
_6 vertex pipes
_8.64 Gigapixel/second fill rate
_37.8 GB/s Peak Memory Bandwidth
_HYPER Z support for HD resolutions including Hierarchical Z, color and Z compression
_Hierarchical Z and Early Z
_Z Compression
_Fast Z Clear
_Z/Stencil Cache

Six Vertex Engines
_Workstation class vertex processing power
_600 million polygon transforms per second
_5.7 billion vertex shader operations per second
_Workstation-class performance

High-detail Geometry
_Designed for next-gen games with massive polygon counts
_Allows huge numbers of characters on screen at once
_High definition foliage and particle effects

Smart Shader HD
_Long pixel shaders
_1536 instructions per pass
_High-detail geometry shaders
_Infinite length shaders (multipass via F-buffer)
_Single pass trig functions (Sine & Cosine)

3Dc Compression Technology
_Lossless Normal Map Compression
_4:1 Normal Map Compression technology

SmoothVision HD
_Sparse sample pattern AA with gamma correction
_Temporal AA (up to 12X effective)
_Centroid AA
_16X Anisotropic filtering with adaptive heuristics

HyperZ HD
_Optimized for performance at high display resolutions, including HDTV resolutions
_Lossless z-buffer compression (up to 48:1)
_Rejects up to 256 occluded pixels per clock
_Up to 32 Z/stencil operations/clock

VideoShader HD
_High-quality video processing & acceleration
_Real-time user programmable video effects
_Video post processing and filtering
_MPEG 1, 2, 4 encode and decode acceleration
_FULLSTREAM Video Deblocking
_WMV9 decode acceleration
_High-quality resolution scaling
_Adaptive Per Pixel Deinterlacing
_Motion Compensation
_Noise removal filtering
_Display Rotation


 


  

Sapphire has been shipping their high-end video cards with a very comprehensive bundle of software and accessories. The bundle included with their Radeon X850XT Platinum Edition is no different. Included with the card, we found a basic user's manual, a driver CD-ROM, and an assortment of other discs that included copies of Cyberlink's PowerDVD and Sapphire's "RedLine" overclocking utility. A copy of Cyberlink's Power Director video editing suite was also included to compliment the card's video in / video out (ViVo) capabilities. In past reviews we've found Power Director to be quite useful and easy to use (see here). There were also two relatively new, full version games included, namely Splinter Cell: Pandora Tomorrow and Prince of Persia: The Sands of Time. Both of these games currently sell for upwards of $30 each, so it was good to see them included, considering the hefty price this card commands.

There was also a collection of cables and adapters included with Sapphire's AGP Radeon X850XT Platinum Edition. There was a standard 6-ft S-Video cable included, a composite video cable, and a DVI-to-DB15 adapter along with a splitter for connecting the card to an HD-TV's components inputs, and another adapter equipped with S-Video and composite video inputs and outputs. Lastly, there was a molex power cable splitter included, with purple ends that match the color of the card's supplemental power connector.

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