AMD Radeon HD 6870 & 6850 Graphics Cards Debut

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News Posted: Thu, Oct 21 2010 10:21 PM

AMD Radeon HD 6870 & 6850 Graphics DebutAMD is hard launching a pair of new Radeon HD 6800 series cards today, based on the GPU formerly codenamed “Barts”. The new Radeon HD 6870 and Radeon HD 6850 are the first cards to arrive utilizing AMD’s second-generation DirectX 11 architecture. The cards are designed to offer Radeon HD 5800-class performance at much lower price points, with lower power consumption and with smaller dies, which make them more economical to produce. We’ve got the full scoop along with single-GPU and CrossFire testing on the pages ahead...

AMD Radeon HD 6870 & 6850 Graphics Debut

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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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Dave_HH replied on Thu, Oct 21 2010 11:42 PM

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

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lifeskills replied on Thu, Oct 21 2010 11:58 PM

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

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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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Marco C replied on Fri, Oct 22 2010 2:39 PM

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

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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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AKwyn replied on Fri, Oct 22 2010 3:54 PM

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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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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rapid1 replied on Fri, Oct 22 2010 11:53 PM

Well it seems as I have no visible upgrade path at all until the Caymen hits, and even then if I stay on the ATI hardware. Of course my5870 and 5850 are humming right along beating everything compared here anyways minus 20 watts anyway. I don't think 20 watts of power is really worth it personally.

The one thing I see as a mess up here is the fact that the 5800 and even 5700 series were all widely adopted. Being as I see it as not much of an upgrade I would bet many see it the same or at least a good amount of people, but this includes especially the ones who would use the amount of money on a GPU that these call for. Then on top of that I would bet shortly there will be some massive sales on the 5800 series cards of which I am sure there are many in stock.

So while I applaud the upgrading they did and especially the areas they concentrated on, I just don't see this series as being as good financially for the company. I am hoping all the CPU goodies supposed to be streaming out of AMD in the next six months makes up for them on the CPU side of things as well as evens things about between there CPU GPU offerings overall making them stronger market wide. If this does not happen they may have very well stalled there recovery.

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I only wish ATI folded as good as Nvidia, otherwise they are doing great as pointed out.

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Yeah, I did read about them Now i will remember that was ATI. Now it had changed to new name "AMD Radeon" I am sure it still be former ATI  video card

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gibbersome replied on Sun, Oct 24 2010 11:00 AM

My thoughts exactly rapid. This release is a refinement rather than a revolution. Since the release is right on time with their upgrade cycle, perhaps refinement was the only way to move forward with 32nm process not available yet (I think the article mentions this).

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rapid1 replied on Sun, Oct 24 2010 12:19 PM

Yes; it does mention all off the things about refinement. I am pointing out that basically ATI may not be the UBER performer in AMD's camp this go around, because the enthusiast side may not see the point in upgrading there 5870 to a 6870. The thing which makes this interesting from a business standpoint is ATI (now AMD) has never tried to wholeheartedly rip off there valued customers as Nvidia does time and again (and of course much like abused spouses the fan boys cower at there knees and call them god). AMD seems to use it to try to claw back to where they were several years ago which in an of itself is quite interesting. I will not cut on Intel because thankfully to them CPU's have kept advancing for the last several years, and AMD has followed on their coat tails trying to keep up. They actually seem to be getting themselves out of financial purgatory as well. I just think it would have been a better strategy business wise to do my damnedest to get a barn burning GPU on the market prior to all the processor goodies which are supposed to be coming down ATI's path in the coming months. Then with both main product sides of the company firing on all cylinders watch the phoenix rise from the ashes an all around market beater again. Who knows maybe I am just wishing dreamily to see AMD blow Intel and Nvidia to smithereens, so that the market as a whole will blow up with new enhanced R&D like what brought us core2 duo, and of course the chips Nvidia limped on for years (and renamed/re-released numerous times). If you see it much as a true picture of why competition is good all the way around (IE: Prices/new technology faster) for humanity it is good for us all if every market leader steps into battle guns ablaze, rather than just on one flank.

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Its funny what "mainstream" cards are capable of these days....

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AKwyn replied on Tue, Oct 26 2010 4:47 AM

Tom Kamkari:

I only wish ATI folded as good as Nvidia, otherwise they are doing great as pointed out.

Well the ATI cards are designed primarily for gaming so I don't expect folding to be a high point for them.

 

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