ATI Radeon HD 5970 Dual-GPU Powerhouse Review

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News Posted: Tue, Nov 17 2009 11:48 PM

AMD's "Sweet Spot" GPU strategy over the last few years has been fairly predictable. Instead of producing the biggest, most powerful GPU possible--yields be damned--the company sets out to produce a relatively high-end GPU, using a cutting edge fabrication process, that hits a proverbial sweet spot between cost and performance. Then derivatives, and even multiples, of that GPU are used to flesh out a top-to-bottom line-up of graphics cards, that hit a broad range of price points.

It began with the RV670, which powered the single-GPU based Radeon HD 3870 and dual-GPU Radeon HD 3870 X2--hence the X2. Then came the RV770, which powered the Radeon HD 4870 and eventually the Radeon HD 4870 X2. The strategy has obviously paid off, as AMD is once again a price/performance leader in the GPU space, after some not-so-great performances like the R600, better known as the Radeon HD 2900 XT. Knowing their strategy, it should almost come as no surprise that the graphics card we'll be showing you today, the Radeon HD 5970, has come to fruition. Although it doesn't follow the same naming convention as AMD's previous dual-GPU powered cards, the Radeon HD 5970 is nonetheless powered by a pair of ATI "Cypress" Radeon HD 5800 series GPUs, linked together on a single PCB by a PCI Express bridge, very much like previous X2 iterations. Come on by and check it out...

ATI Radeon HD 5970 Dual-GPU Powerhouse Review


AMD Radeon HD 5970 Dual-GPU DirectX 11 Graphics Card

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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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realneil replied on Wed, Nov 18 2009 8:17 AM

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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ClemSnide replied on Wed, Nov 18 2009 9:13 AM

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.

Hello

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Marco C replied on Wed, Nov 18 2009 9:34 AM

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.

Marco Chiappetta
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Dave_HH replied on Wed, Nov 18 2009 6:53 PM

I'm kinda like a spammer here but different, though just as shameless.  Big Smile

Digg our story up boys!

http://digg.com/hardware/World_s_Fastest_Graphics_Card_Dual_GPU_Radeon_5970_Launched?OTC-widget

Yes

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acarzt replied on Wed, Nov 18 2009 7:27 PM

I don't like this new naming scheme... it's more confusing. I don't want to have to decipher all these numbers lol the x2 was simple.. times 2... got it! They just over complicated it.

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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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gibbersome replied on Thu, Nov 19 2009 11:50 AM

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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realneil replied on Mon, Nov 23 2009 6:54 PM

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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Dave_HH replied on Mon, Nov 23 2009 11:07 PM

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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realneil replied on Tue, Nov 24 2009 7:55 AM

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

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