AMD Radeon HD 6870 & 6850 Graphics Cards Debut - HotHardware

AMD Radeon HD 6870 & 6850 Graphics Cards Debut

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Alien vs. Predator
DirectX 11 Gaming Performance


Alien vs. Predator

The Alien vs. Predator benchmark makes use of the advanced Tessellation, screen space ambient occlusion and high-quality shadow features, available with DirectX 11. In addition to enabling all of the aforementioned DirectX 11 related features offered by this benchmark, we also switched on 4X anti-aliasing along with 16X anisotropic filtering to more heavily tax the graphics cards being tested.

With AvP we see that a Radeon HD 6870 performs about on par with a Radeon HD 5850 but drops a few frames per second at the ultra-high resolution of 2560X1600.  This is likely due to the 6870's fewer number of Texture Units, since geometry throughput and memory bandwidth are higher for the new architecture.  Regardless, the Radeon HD 6870 handily outpaces a stock GeForce GTX 460 but can't quite keep up with a GTX 470 or OC'd 460.  The new Radeon HD 6850 tracks the performance of a stock GeForce GTX 460 in this test.



 

6870

6850

5870

5850

GTX 470

GTX 460

% Increase

 97.7%

97.8% 

 83.4%

 84.8%

 89.7%

92.6% 

 

Here we've calculated performance scaling for you in AMD CrossFire and NVIDIA SLI multi-GPU modes again and it's no surprise at point that AMD once again shows better slightly better scaling for their latest generation of GPUs versus NVIDIA's.  This theme was prevalent in every multi-GPU test we've shown here. This wasn't the case in the previous generation AMD architecture but it clearly is now.  Impressive to say the least.

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These are for the mainstream users. Not a viable upgrade from my 5870. Waiting on the Caymen 6890 XT for my next upgrade. Bring it!

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That's Cayman (Radeon HD 6970) and yep, we want it brought too! :)

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Good read!  Was glad too see some Branded cards, rather than the reference models I have seen so far.  Can't wait to see cayman and antilles coverage.

would love to hear about the stereoscopic 3d support these cards are introducing.

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Great review! The excellent scaling bodes well for the dual-GPU 6990.

Some things that confused me:

-The naming convention will make it all the harder to compare previous generation cards with the new generation. Perhaps AMD wants to create more low to mid-end offerings and needed to free up some numbering space.

-Little disappointed that AMD chose to debut the series with the upper mid-range cards. Can't wait to see how the 6900 series perform, but right now the performance numbers are good, but not thrilling.

-The improvement in power, heat and noise will be very interesting to see in the mobile versions of these cards.

 

So all in all, AMD has served us a great appetizer course, but no entrée.

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It's weird how Sapphire chose to use the stock fan on the 6870 but placed the good, quiet cooling fan on the 6850.

I have the Sapphire 6850 and its the quietest fans I have ever heard (or not heard), it only starts to get noticeably audible at 55%  inside a case but during OCCT/Furmark the fans only throttle up to 59% so its still relatively quiet when you are gaming.

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The Crossfire scaling is insane. Almost double performance in some games. That's just crazy. Not that I have the money to drop in 2 cards. I am getting a good size pay check tomorrow. About time to upgrade and now seems like a pretty good time to do that. My budget will most likely be around the $150 - $200 price point so this review hits that hard.

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I myself am also waiting for Caymen as well. I want that card to blow away the GTX480 if it wants to get my hard earned money.

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Any one know when the 6900 series cards will be out?

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@Der - We can't say exactly, but it won't be long.

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Marco C:

@Der - We can't say exactly, but it won't be long.

Sweet! In the next week or so then I would assume... 

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