ATI Radeon HD 5970 Dual-GPU Powerhouse Review - HotHardware

ATI Radeon HD 5970 Dual-GPU Powerhouse Review

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The first retail-ready Radeon HD 5970 card to hit the HotHardware labs came by way of HIS. Although availability of Radeon HD 5800 series GPUs has been scarce for a few weeks, we're told this card (and 5970s from many other AMD board partners) will be available immediately. And inventory on other 5800 series cards should be ramping back up soon too.

  

   
HIS Radeon HD 5970 Card

The HIS Radeon HD 5970 is essentially identical to the reference card pictured on the previous page, save for a large decal affixed to the front side of the card's fan shroud. The fan is the same, as is the output configuration, backplate, 2GB of GDDR5, power requirements, frequencies, etc.

  

  
HIS Radeon HD 5970 Accessory Bundle

HIS does, however, differentiate their Radeon HD 5970 with a unique accessory bundle. In addition to the card itself, included with the HIS Radeon HD 5970 is a multi-language quick installation guide, am HIS case badge, a driver CD, a CrossFire bridge connector, dual-Molex to 6-pin and 8-pin power adapters, DVI to VGA and HDMI dongles, a mini-DisplayPort to DisplayPort adapter, a coupon for the upcoming DX11-racing sim Dirt 2, and a cool multi-purpose tool with screwdrivers and a level.

The most interesting part of the HID Radeon HD 5970's bundle, however, was the included iClear card. According to HIS, the iClear card can "reduce the noise distortion generated from the high end graphics card or TV tuner cards". What the means to end users is anything but clear, however. We tested the HIS Radeon HD 5970 with and without the iClear card installed and didn't see any visual quality differences, and didn't experience any changes in stability or overclockability.

We should also note that this is the card we used throughout the performance testing laid out for you on the pages ahead.

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OMG, I wasn't expecting a dual GPU solution so soon!

Reading review instead of going to sleep! Smile

 

Okay, just finished reading the terrific review. I would want to add that getting two 5850's (Oringal MSRP = $259) in crossfire might be a better option than this one. For one, it'll save you ~$80, while reducing power consumption. Secondly...there is a slight performance boost with the dual 5850's. Unless the price is reduced by....say $100, I see no reason to purchase this.

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And so the battle for the fastest video card continues. This release is truly remarkable for ATI. Thinking that Nvidia has been
2 steps ahead with them last year. The 5970 sounds really beastly, doesn't it?

[edited by admin]

Crysis 2 here we come!

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I'm surprised this came out as quickly as it did! When is the mobile 5000 series set for release?!

 

ClemSnide:

But if the $600 price tag is accurate, it's a good alternative to a 5870 for people who want the performance. I'm encouraged. I'll stick with the sweet-spot 5850 for now, but perhaps WoW: Cataclysm will support more than one GPU and by then the prices (and availability) will have settled!

Sapphire Radeon HD 5890 on Amazon

 

And it's eligible for free shipping! Big Smile

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The Sapphire card is $624.00 at Newegg, and just as conveniently out of stock.

 

I want this card. Dave, you could send me yours for further testing,..... really,......

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I want one too!  Ask Marco.  He's the only one that has them at this point on our team.  Two of em in fact! :P

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Two? In crossfire? drool,......

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Since my AMD board has only one PCIE connection, I can see buying it. I can't afford it, but I can 'see' buying it!

Ha!

Need my Coffee to continue,.................

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Realneil speaks to my condition*. Since my favorite game doesn't take advantage of an SLI or Crossfire setup, I went with a single GPU slot motherboard, and chose the Sapphire 5850; at $265 it was a good deal from Amazon, assuming it ever ships.

Couple comments though:

  1. Why no 6-monitor capability? Since this is essentially two 58xx cards in one, shouldn't we be able to run six Eyefinity-controlled displays?
  2. >[HIS's card includes] a cool multi-purpose tool with screwdrivers and a level.
    A level?

But if the $600 price tag is accurate, it's a good alternative to a 5870 for people who want the performance. I'm encouraged. I'll stick with the sweet-spot 5850 for now, but perhaps WoW: Cataclysm will support more than one GPU and by then the prices (and availability) will have settled!

Sapphire Radeon HD 5890 on Amazon

 

*: An old Quaker term for "I agree."

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Ah, finally ATi has a decisive claim as to owning the #1 single slot solution.  Many people preferred 5870 to GTX 295, but the latter was a bit faster most of the time.  Now the king has arrived.  But with availability already lacking in the 5870/5850, good luck finding one before Christmas.

 

ClemSnide:

Why no 6-port solutions? Since this is essentially two 58xx cards in one, shouldn't we be able to run six Eyefinity-controlled monitors?

I believe that drivers still do not allow 6 monitors with Crossfire 5xxx series yet.  But when they do you might want it, but even then 6 monitors is a hell of a lot of pixels even for this beast.

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It's also a question of board real-estate. If you want 6-monitors, you need six display outputs. There is a 6-output 5870 coming soon. No word on a 6-output 5970 yet though.

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