ATI Radeon HD 5870 Eyefinity 6 Edition Gaming

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News Posted: Wed, Mar 31 2010 12:08 AM

ATI Radeon HD 5870 Eyefinity 6 Edition GamingBack in September of last year, just prior to the official arrival of the Radeon HD 5800 series, we first wrote about AMD's ATI Eyefinity technology and hinted at the fact that cards with six display outputs were coming. Since then, we had seen AMD's 6-output Radeon in action at a number of events, but hadn't been given the opportunity to evaluate one in the lab on our own test hardware, nor had we been informed of an official planned release date.

It turns out, Microsoft had implement an artificial limit of four monitors in Windows 7 with the final release of the OS, and AMD had to find a way to workaround that limit with their drivers. Although, we sure the supply issues AMD had to contend with played some sort of role in the delay as well.

Regardless, the ATI Radeon HD 5870 Eyefinity 6 Edition is here now, and we've got one in house for testing. We paired the card up with six, 22" Dell LCD Panels in a 3x2 configuration, with a max resolution of 5760x2160 and ran a number of popular games. Performance data and our experience with the Eyefinity 6 Edition is available on the pages ahead. For now, check out the specs and hardware and then move on to bask in the insanity...

ATI Radeon HD 5870 Eyefinity 6 Edition Gaming


Sapphire's 2GB Radeon HD 5870 Eyefinity 6 Edition

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la_guy_10 replied on Wed, Mar 31 2010 12:37 AM

Great review Marco, first off I am impressed by the sheer power of the 5870 eyefinity edition I mean six 30" monitors running in tandem wow!!!! I can see how a first person shooter game could be a problem from time to time as the screen laps over the bezel as you are lining up for a shot. But with a game like Dirt 2 where there is no cross hair to line up a shot just driving on an open map with your peripheral vision comes into play as other drivers are attempting to pass would be very helpful also it adds to the immersive experience. Again just the  raw performance of 1 card not crossfire or SLI running 6 monitors is amazing and really shows that the hard wok AMD put into the 5 series architecture. Impressive indeed!!!! Yes

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Inspector replied on Wed, Mar 31 2010 12:44 AM

This is just an awesome card with great features. When screens with no bezels come out it would be awesome!The comparison there at the end was nice. The 1GB beat the 2GB at one thing with the same setup at least xD

LOL at Marcos driving :) wrong way there Wink lol

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Devhux replied on Wed, Mar 31 2010 12:55 AM

I recently had the chance to try out a 3-display Eyefinity setup, and was actually quite surprised at how well it worked.  I do think I'd be distracted by the bezels in 6-panel Eyefinity mode though, but I guess I'd need to actually experience it before dismissing it completely.

I do love the fact you guys tossed Crysis in here though - I'm sure somebody would have asked the question if you didn't.  :)

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RyuGTX replied on Wed, Mar 31 2010 1:36 AM

Glad you included the 1GB vs 2GB on the last page. But besides resolution, would the differences between the two widen if you increased the AA? Or would they perform the same at all AA levels?

 

For games, I'm not exactly sure what they are planning to fix the issue in fps games. I think the answer isn't just moving the crosshair above or below the bezel. This would take away from some of the realism of a game, but for a 6 monitor setup (3 columns, 2 rows), the bottom 3 could be a regular 3 monitor setup, with the top screens doing something else. Like either have all 3 do a map or 1 screen shows a map while the other 2 show other stuff. I think a map would be nice because it would be easier to issue objective points and stuff. Like in an fps game that has a commander. That commander could tell which squads to attack what and how to approach the objective. Almost like an RTS game. The map could be real-time too like the mini-map in an RTS. So you know if a squad was under fire or not.

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Devhux replied on Wed, Mar 31 2010 1:49 AM

You could also have a monitor for stats and such (ping, # of kills, player/team ranking, etc.)

That probably would work fairly well.

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Dang!.....Y'all Must have really loved this card :)
This is why ATI Rocks!
One thing I don't understand, is all this reverse thinking when it comes to displays like this. These types of displays are what they tried in the 90's. trying to accomplish a big screen by putting a bunch of little ones together. having the edges of the screens cross hatching each other is not only distracting it is borderline Boobnoxious :P
To me it is like having a Opteron and trying to run it through an old Macintosh Green display. Thanks to this review, you can really apply your imagination into this card!  Lets think about current technology. 6x30" displays? Ok, what you get is 180 inches of display with a bunch of black bars running through it. Where is the fun in that?
With current Projector technologies, you can have a 300" display right of the bat, and it will cost you less than all the displays and mounting hardware required for this setup.
This review is just awesome, when it comes to showing the raw power of this card!  I watched every video at least twice:) It just kept buggin me that the bars were there. After a while I kept saying to myself "get out of the way"!  If I'm exploding an Aliens head, I don't want it to look like it is behind an I-Beam:P
This was a great review, and once again shows my affinity for ATI. Now they just need to come down in price a bit or at least include six of the Mini-display adaptors of your choice, instead of the hodgepodge they include now. Like six Mini-HDMI's or Mini-DVI's? If they left it to the consumer then they might really cut down on the wast of the unused materials.
With this review, now we know that a card like this can handle six projectors at the same time, at resolutions far greater than is really necessary. If you had six Optoma HD20's running, just imagine...1800inches or 150 FEET! of pure entertainment at 1080p resolution and no black bars when you look around! Bezel issue resolved :) If you had vaulted ceilings, you can literally turn your home into a flight/driving simulator and one amazing Home Theatre! Can you imagine this setup with FSX! Or six Optoma HD66's, then you would have 150 feet of 3D HD all over your walls! The ultimate setup for when the BR Avatar 3D comes out. Can you say Nerdgasum :o
My only other question would be, How does this benchtest to the V8750 as far as WS performance? If any? Or possibly be crossfired with it?
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Bishounen replied on Wed, Mar 31 2010 9:36 AM

Once thing I have found about Multi-Monitor setups:  An even number of monitors is ALWAYS a problem.  You always end up with a Bezel edge in the center of your view.  So you need odd number setups.  The number of monitor rows follows the same rule.  So either 1 row of monitors, or 3 rows stacked vertically.   Frankly, 3 monitors in one row is usually best, although I suppose you could do 5 monitors in one row.  Otherwise you REALLY need to bump all the way up to 9 to avoid the "Center Bezel" issue.

I'd actually be interested to know if it can handle non-standard monitor rotation angles.  IE:  Can I take 3 or 5 widescreen panels, rotate them all 90 degrees to the right or left, and THEN use them?  I hope so, as this eliminates the need to use a stacked row setup.  you can get very close to the same display area with less monitors.  If you use larger monitors you can end up with the exact same display area, and less bezel interference.

So..  Can I do THAT with this card?

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Marco C replied on Wed, Mar 31 2010 9:40 AM

@Bishounen - Yes, you can configure odd-numbered screens, in either portrait or landscape mode.

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Bishounen replied on Wed, Mar 31 2010 9:57 AM

Marco C:

@Bishounen - Yes, you can configure odd-numbered screens, in either portrait or landscape mode.

NICE!

(I don't suppose you have a video of that setup too?  I'd love to see that in action!)

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I've actually been really tempted of late to buy a third monitor and a 5870.  After reading this though, I wonder if I can swing three more monitors and one of these 6 editions.

Hummmm... five 1,920x1,080 monitors setup as 5x1 portrait... 5,400x1,920.  I would lose 360 pix on width and 240 on height, but not have bezels on my cross hairs.

BTW, did you guys run it with that option that you set your bezel width and it cuts that part of the image out?  Actually, nevermind.  That would make the cross hairs completely disappear on your layout.

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Inspector replied on Wed, Mar 31 2010 4:19 PM

Wait inifinity what? why won't it have bezels on the screen if you set it up with 5*1 portrait mode???

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sp12 replied on Wed, Mar 31 2010 4:28 PM

I am very impressed with the card, and the reviews included 2gb vs. 1gb page.

However, I'm waiting for a 5970 eyefinity edition, though I've heard rumors of an extreme 4gb version complete with 5870 clocks.

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Inspector, said would not have bezels on my cross hairs.  5x1 setup (whenever AMD enables it in drivers) will put the cross hairs in the middle of the middle screen, unlike the 3x2 setup which splits them right at the bezels.

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3vi1 replied on Wed, Mar 31 2010 6:14 PM

Awesome.  I'd be more excited if Samsung wasn't going to try to hit us for $600 a screen on those thin-bezel monitors (from what I read elsewhere on the web).

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Inspector replied on Wed, Mar 31 2010 6:36 PM

Oh infinity i get what you mean now :D.

 

Ya monitors with less bezel of course is going to cost us more :(

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So very sweet. Although I am no keen on having to lower display settings to get the smoothest play. For the kind of money you would be sinking into the system you would want to max out AA and other video settings even in Crysis. I guess a 2nd card in crossfire would help this or no? With eyefinity would a second card just give you the option of adding more displays or would it share the work load? I would love to have a 6 screen set up but I couldn't deal with the bezels. The advantage over the 1 projector display at the same size as somebody had already mentioned back when this was first released, is that you get a much higher resolution then you would using a single projector. 6 projectors would be great as you would have no bezels and you could get the same amount of pixels but talk about alot of cash. I would jump on this if they come out with some good inexpensive monitors with no bezels.

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RyuGTX replied on Wed, Mar 31 2010 10:11 PM

A picture of a few different Eyefinity scenarios.

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