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ATI Radeon HD 5770 and 5750 Mainstream DX11 GPUs
Date: Oct 13, 2009
Author: Marco Chiappetta
Introduction and Specifications

A little less than a month ago, AMD unveiled the ATI Radeon HD 5800 series of graphics cards to much fanfare. And for good reason. Not only is the Radeon HD 5800 series the first to offer full DirectX 11 support, among other unique features like Eyefinity, but the flagship ATI Radeon HD 5870 signifies the first time since AMD acquired ATI that the company has had the single, fastest GPU on the market in their repertoire. Not only that, but Radeon HD 5800 series cards also offer top-notch image quality, great power consumption characteristics considering their performance, and they're competitively price too.

As is typically the case with the major GPU players, new products based on their latest architectures trickle down into lower and lower price points over time, until their entire product stack is comprised of cards with similar feature sets, with their main differentiators being performance and price. What is not typical of today's launch, however, is the speed at which AMD is ready with their latest round of product.

Today marks the introduction of the Radeon HD 5700 series. As you can probably surmise, the 5700 series has virtually all of the features of the 5800 series, but is targeted at a more mainstream market segment. In fact, the more powerful of the two cards being introduced today, the ATI Radeon HD 5770, has an MSRP of under $160, putting it within reach of far more consumers. The second card, the ATI Radeon HD 5750 drops in at an even lower $109 - $129. We've got the rest of the juicy details laid out for you on the pages ahead. For now, check out the full specifications below and then we'll move on to some of the finer points of the Radeon HD 5700 series...

AMD Radeon HD 5750 and 5770 DirectX 11 Graphics Cards

AMD ATI Radeon HD 5700 Series
Specifications and Features

1.04 billion 40nm transistors

TeraScale 2 Unified Processing Architecture

  • 800 Stream Processing Units
  • 40 Texture Units
  • 64 Z/Stencil ROP Units
  • 16 Color ROP Units

GDDR5 memory interface

PCI Express 2.1 x16 bus interface

DirectX 11 support

  • Shader Model 5.0
  • DirectCompute 11
  • Programmable hardware tessellation unit
  • Accelerated multi-threading
  • HDR texture compression
  • Order-independent transparency

OpenGL 3.2 support

Image quality enhancement technology

  • Up to 24x multi-sample and super-sample anti-aliasing modes
  • Adaptive anti-aliasing
  • 16x angle independent anisotropic texture filtering
  • 128-bit floating point HDR rendering

ATI Avivo HD Video & Display technology

  • UVD 2 dedicated video playback accelerator
  • Advanced post-processing and scaling
  • Dynamic contrast enhancement and color correction
  • Brighter whites processing (blue stretch)
  • Independent video gamma control
  • Dynamic video range control
  • Support for H.264, VC-1, and MPEG-2
  • Dual-stream 1080p playback support
  • DXVA 1.0 & 2.0 support
  • Integrated dual-link DVI output with HDCP

    • Max resolution: 2560x1600
  • Integrated DisplayPort output

    • Max resolution: 2560x1600
  • Integrated HDMI 1.3 output with Deep Color, xvYCC wide gamut support, and high bit-rate audio

    • Max resolution: 1920x1200
  • Integrated VGA output

    • Max resolution: 2048x1536
  • 3D stereoscopic display/glasses support
  • Integrated HD audio controller

    • Output protected high bit rate 7.1 channel surround sound over HDMI with no additional cables required
    • Supports AC-3, AAC, Dolby TrueHD and DTS Master Audio formats


ATI Eyefinity multi-display technology

  • Three independent display controllers

    • Drive three displays simultaneously with independent resolutions, refresh rates, color controls, and video overlays
  • Display grouping

    • Combine multiple displays to behave like a single large display

ATI Stream acceleration technology

  • OpenCL 1.0 compliant
  • DirectCompute 11
  • Accelerated video encoding, transcoding, and upscaling

    • Native support for common video encoding instructions

ATI CrossFireX multi-GPU technology

  • Dual GPU scaling

ATI PowerPlay power management technology

  • Dynamic power management
  • Ultra-low power state support for multi-GPU configurations

Certified drivers for Windows 7, Vista, and XP

Radeon HD 5870 Speeds & Feeds

  • Engine clock speed: 850 MHz
  • Processing power (single precision): 1.36 TeraFLOPS
  • Polygon throughput: 850M polygons/sec
  • Data fetch rate (32-bit): 136 billion fetches/sec
  • Texel fill rate (bilinear filtered): 34 Gigatexels/sec
  • Pixel fill rate: 13.6 Gigapixels/sec
  • Anti-aliased pixel fill rate: 54.4 Gigasamples/sec
  • Memory clock speed: 1.2 GHz
  • Memory data rate: 4.8 Gbps
  • Memory bandwidth: 76.8 GB/sec
  • Maximum board power: 108 Watts
  • Idle board power: 18 Watts

Radeon HD 5750 Speeds & Feeds

  • Engine clock speed: 700 MHz
  • Processing power (single precision): 1.008 TeraFLOPS
  • Polygon throughput: 700M polygons/sec
  • Data fetch rate (32-bit): 100.8 billion fetches/sec
  • Texel fill rate (bilinear filtered): 25.2 Gigatexels/sec
  • Pixel fill rate: 11.2 Gigapixels/sec
  • Anti-aliased pixel fill rate: 44.8 Gigasamples/sec
  • Memory clock speed: 1.15 GHz
  • Memory data rate: 4.6 Gbps
  • Memory bandwidth: 73.6 GB/sec
  • Maximum board power: 86 Watts
  • Idle board power: 16 Watts



Radeon HD 5700 Series GPU Block Diagram

If you  have already read our coverage of the Radeon HD 5800 series launch, then the above block diagram should look somewhat familiar to you. As we've already mentioned, the new Radeon HD 5700 series GPU offers virtually all of the same features of 5800 series. The difference between the two is that the 5700 series is equipped with fewer SIMD engines, and hence stream processors, fewer texture units, and ROPs and it has a narrower memory memory interface.

To be more specific, the Radeon HD 5700 series GPU offers up to 10 SIMD engines, with up to 800 total Stream Processing Units. And up to 40 Texture Units, 64 Z/Stencil ROP units, and 16 Color ROP units with a 128-bit GDDR5 memory interface. We say "up to" a number of times here because the Radeon HD 5770 and Radeon HD 5750 cards being introduced today differ in their specific GPU configurations.

The Radeon HD 5750 and 5770

Although the Radeon HD 5770 and Radeon HD 5750 are powered by the same GPU, there are some notable differences between the two cards that we should point out.

As you can see in the chart above, the Radeon HD 5770 and 5750 sport the same 1.04B transistor GPU, manufactured using TSMC's 40nm process. The lower-end Radeon HD 5750, however, has a lower stock engine clock than the 5770 (700MHz vs. 850MHz) and 80 fewer stream processors (720 vs. 800). The 5750 also has four fewer texture units and a lower stock memory clock, which results in a lower texture fillrate and less peak memory bandwidth.

Due to its pared down design, the Radeon HD 5750 also has lower power ratings. Idle power for the Radeon HD 5750 and 5770 are an impressive 16W and 18W, respectively, with maximum board power ratings of 86W and 108W. All things considered, the specifications for the Radeon HD 5770 and 5750 very much resemble last year's Radeon HD 4870 and 4850, but with DX11 support and few other new bells and whistles.

Despite being comprised of over a billion transistors though, the Radeon HD 5700 series GPU is relatively small. The picture above shows a dime next to the GPU as it appears on the Radeon HD 5750, sans cooler. Actual die size is 166mm2 for those keeping score.


ATI Radeon HD 5770 Reference Card

Which brings us to the cards. From the front, the Radeon HD 5770 looks very much like the Radeon HD 5870 and 5850 cards that launched over the last few weeks, although the 5770 has a shorter PCB. Cards are equipped with a black fan shroud, with a red stripe running down the middle, that encases the entire front side of the card. The cooler has a barrel fan that draws air into the shroud, where it is forced through the heatsink and partially exhausted from the system through vents in the card's mounting plate. Two more vents at the back of the card also direct some air within the system.

The outputs on the Radeon HD 5770 consist of dual, dual-link DVI outputs, an HDMI output (with audio) and a DisplayPort output. Any combination of three of these ports can be used, and of course the card fully supports the ATI Eyefinity multi-display technology, with up to three displays.

The backside of the Radeon HD 5770 is exposed, but other than the myriad of surface mounted components there isn't much to see. The GPU heatsink retention bracket is visible right about in the center the PCB, with the card's dual CrossFire edge connectors a couple of inches away at the top corner.

As we've mentioned, total board power is rated at 108 watts. As such, the Radeon HD 5770 requires only a single 6-pin PCI Express power connector. Stock frequencies are listed in the chart above, along with peak fillrate and memory bandwidth, and cards are outfitted with 1GB of GDDR5 memory.


ATI Radeon HD 5750 Reference Card

The Radeon HD 5750 has an even simpler design than the 5770. The PCB on the card is even shorter than the 5770's and a simple, round heatsink / fan combo sits atop the GPU. The rest of the board, including the back side and VRM, is exposed. The 5750 has the same output configuration as its big brother, with come with either 1GB or 512MB of GDDR5 memory, and it too requires only a single 6-pin PCI Express supplemental power connector.

Test Setup and 3DMark Vantage

HOW WE CONFIGURED THE TEST SYSTEM: We tested the graphics cards in this article on an Gigabyte GA-EX58-UD5 motherboard powered by a Core i7 965 quad-core processor and 6GB of OCZ DDR3 RAM. The first thing we did when configuring the test system was enter the system BIOS and set all values to their "optimized" or "high performance" default settings. Then we manually configured the memory timings and disabled any integrated peripherals that wouldn't be put to use. The hard drive was then formatted, and Windows 7 Ultimate x64 was installed. When the installation was complete we fully updated the OS and installed the latest hotfixes, along with the necessary drivers and applications.

HotHardware's Test Systems
Core i7 Powered

Hardware Used:
Core i7 965 (3.2GHz)

Gigabyte EX58-UD5 (X58 Express)

Radeon HD 5770
Radeon HD 5750
Radeon HD 5850
Radeon HD 4890
GeForce GTX 285
GeForce GTX 260 Core 216

6GB OCZ DDR3-1333
Western Digital Raptor 150GB
Integrated Audio
Integrated Network

Relevant Software:
Windows 7 Ultimate x64
ATI Catalyst v9.10b
NVIDIA GeForce Drivers v191.00

Benchmarks Used:

3DMark Vantage v1.0.1
FarCry 2
Left 4 Dead*
Enemy Territory: Quake Wars v1.5*

* - Custom benchmark

Futuremark 3DMark Vantage
Synthetic DirectX Gaming

3DMark Vantage

The latest version of Futuremark's synthetic 3D gaming benchmark, 3DMark Vantage, is specifically bound to Windows Vista-based systems because it uses some advanced visual technologies that are only available with DirectX 10, which y isn't available on previous versions of Windows.  3DMark Vantage isn't simply a port of 3DMark06 to DirectX 10 though.  With this latest version of the benchmark, Futuremark has incorporated two new graphics tests, two new CPU tests, several new feature tests, in addition to support for the latest PC hardware.  We tested the graphics cards here with 3DMark Vantage's Extreme preset option, which uses a resolution of 1920x1200 with 4x anti-aliasing and 16x anisotropic filtering.

The Radeon HD 5700 series cards performed well in the 3DMark Vantage benchmark, especially considering their expected price points. The cards weren't able to catch the more expensive Radeon HD 4890, and the GeForce GTX 260, which can be found for just about the same price as the Radeon HD 5770, had a marked advantage here.

Enemy Territory: Quake Wars

Enemy Territory: Quake Wars
OpenGL Gaming Performance

Enemy Territory:
Quake Wars

Enemy Territory: Quake Wars is Based on a radically enhanced version of id's Doom 3 engine and viewed by many as Battlefield 2 meets the Strogg, and then some.  In fact, we'd venture to say that id took EA's team-based warfare genre up a notch or two.  ET: Quake Wars also marks the introduction of John Carmack's "Megatexture" technology that employs large environment and terrain textures that cover vast areas of maps without the need to repeat and tile many smaller textures.  The beauty of megatexture technology is that each unit only takes up a maximum of 8MB of frame buffer memory.  Add to that HDR-like bloom lighting and leading edge shadowing effects and Enemy Territory: Quake Wars looks great, plays well and works high end graphics cards vigorously.  The game was tested with all of its in-game options set to their maximum values with soft particles enabled in addition to 4x anti-aliasing and 16x anisotropic filtering.


The performance trend in our custom Enemy Territory: Quake Wars benchmark looks much like those from the 3DMark Vantage on the previous page. The Radeon HD 5700 series cards come close to the performance of the Radeon HD 4890 and GeForce GTX 260 Core 216, but can't quite catch up. We should also point out that the higher clocks and increased compliment of shader processors and texture units gives the Radeon HD 5770 about a 10% - 20% edge over the more affordable 5750.

Crysis v1.21

Crysis v1.21
DirectX 10 Gaming Performance


If you're at all into enthusiast computing, the highly anticipated single player, FPS smash-hit Crysis, should require no introduction. Crytek's game engine produces some stunning visuals that are easily the most impressive real-time 3D renderings we've seen on the PC to date.  The engine employs some of the latest techniques in 3D rendering like Parallax Occlusion Mapping, Subsurface Scattering, Motion Blur and Depth-of-Field effects, as well as some of the most impressive use of Shader technology we've seen yet.  In short, for those of you that want to skip the technical jib-jab, Crysis is a beast of a game.  We ran the full game patched to v1.21 with all of its visual options set to 'Very High' to put a significant load on the graphics cards being tested  A custom demo recorded on the Ice level was used throughout testing.

We're only three benchmarks in, but an obvious trend is beginning to emerge. The Radeon HD 5700 series cards performed well in our extremely taxing Crysis benchmark, but trailed the GTX 260 and Radeon HD 4890.

FarCry 2

FarCry 2
DirectX Gaming Performance

FarCry 2

Like the original, FarCry 2 is one of the more visually impressive games to be released on the PC to date.  Courtesy of the Dunia game engine developed by Ubisoft, FarCry 2's game-play is enhanced by advanced environment physics, destructible terrain, high resolution textures, complex shaders, realistic dynamic lighting, and motion-captured animations.  We benchmarked the graphics cards in this article with a fully patched version of FarCry 2, using one of the built-in demo runs recorded in the "Ranch" map.  The test results shown here were run at various resolutions with 4X AA enabled.


Although the framerates are higher, the results from the FarCry 2 benchmark mirror those from Crysis on the previous page. The Radeon HD 5770 comes in just ahead of the Radeon HD 5750, and just behind the Radeon HD 4890 and GeForce GTX 260 Core 216.

Left 4 Dead

Left 4 Dead
DirectX Gaming Performance

Left 4 Dead

Left 4 Dead is a co-operative, survival horror, first-person shooter that was developed by Turtle Rock Studios, which was purchased by Valve part-way into development. Like Half Life 2, the game uses the Source engine, however, the visual in L4D are far superior to anything seen in the Half Life universe to date. The game pits four Survivors of an apocalyptic pandemic against hordes of aggressive zombies. We tested the game at resolutions of 1,920 x 1,200 and 2,560 x 1,600 with 4x anti-aliasing and 16x anisotropic filtering enabled and all in game graphical options set to their maximum values.

We saw more of the same in our custom Left 4 Dead benchmark. The performance trend in this test was identical to all of the others. It's worth noting, however, that despite being affordable, mid-range offerings, the Radeon HD 5700 series cards put up near playable (or playable, depending on your opinion) framerates in this game, with anti-aliasing and anisotropic filtering enabled, at 2560x1600.

Tom Clancy's H.A.W.X.

Tom Clancy's H.A.W.X.
DirectX Gaming Performance

Tom Clancy's H.A.W.X.

Tom Clancy's H.A.W.X. is an aerial warfare video game that takes place during the time of Tom Clancy's Ghost Recon Advanced Warfighter.  Players have the opportunity to take the throttle of over 50 famous aircrafts in both solo and 4-player co-op missions, and take them over real world locations and cities in photo-realistic environments created with the best commercial satellite data provided by GeoEye.  We used the built-in performance test at two resolutions with all quality settings set to their highest values, using the DX10 code path for the GeForce cards, and DX10.1 path for the Radeons.


The H.A.W.X. benchmark told essentially the same story as all of the others up to this point. Although the grouping was somewhat tighter, the Radeon HD 5700 series cards trailed the Radeon HD 4890 and GeForce GTX 260 Core 216 cards here. Performance was very good though, especially considering price points.

Overclocking the Radeon HD 5700s

We were curious to see how much frequency headroom the Radeon HD 5700 series cards had left under thier virtual hoods, so for our next set of performance metrics, we spent some time overclocking the new Radeon HD 5770 and HD 5750 using the Overdrive utility built into ATI's Catalyst Control Center software.

Overclocking The Radeon HD 5700 Series GPUs
Pedal To The Metal

In the end, we were able to take the Radeon HD 5770 up from its stock GPU core and memory frequencies of 850MHz and 1200MHz, respectively, to 950MHz and 1430MHz. We also saw gains, albeit somewhat smaller, with the Radeon HD 5750, which was able to hit 805MHz and 1170MHz, up from 700MHz and 1150MHz.

While we had the cards overclocked, we re-ran a couple of high-resolution benchmarks and saw increased performance from both. The increases weren't quite large enough to catch the Radeon HD 4890 or GTX 260, but the delta separating the cards certainly got smaller.

We'd also like to note that our Radeon HD 5750 acted peculiar while overclocking. We were actually able to pass the built-in ATI stability test with GPU clock as high as 860MHz, but games would crash almost immediately. Also, while the GPU was clocked that high, the memory had to clocked lower-than-default. Through lots of experimenting, we settled on 805 / 1170MHz, but think there's room for higher clocks with the card and that it was our particular sample that didn't behave well while overclocked.

Power Consumption and Acoustics

Before bringing this article to a close, we'd like to cover a few final data points--namely power consumption and noise. Throughout all of our benchmarking and testing, we monitored how much power our test system was consuming using a power meter. Our goal was to give you all an idea as to how much power each configuration used while idling and while under a heavy workload. Please keep in mind that we were testing total system power consumption at the outlet here, not just the power being drawn by the graphics cards alone.

Total System Power Consumption
Tested at the Outlet

The put it simply, the new Radeon HD 5770 and HD 5750 had excellent power consumption characteristics. Both cards exhibited very low idle power, lower than any other card we tested here. And peak power consumption for the 5700 series cards was significantly lower than anything else as well.

As you probably suspect looking at the power consumption numbers, temperatures and noise were not an issue for the Radeon HD 5700 series cards either. The cooling fans on either card never spun up to levels that were audible above other system components, even after hours of benchmarking. And temperatures remained in check as well.  Both cards idled at about 38'C, with load temperatures in the upper 60'C range.

Our Summary and Conclusion

Performance Summary: The new Radeon HD 5700 series cards performed very well throughout testing. The higher-end Radeon HD 5770 performed on a level just shy of the Radeon HD 4890 and GeForce GTX 260 Core 216, which puts it right about on par with a Radeon HD 4870. And the Radeon HD 5750 typically finished about 8% - 20% behind the 5770.


Even to the casual observer of the graphics card space, it's obvious that AMD is executing very well with their first generation DirectX 11 GPUs. In the span of three short weeks, the company has introduced four different graphics cards with prices ranging from about $109 on up to $359, and they have taken a performance leadership position at the very high-end of the market with the Radeon HD 5870.


The new Radeon HD 5700 series cards don't quite dominate the competition, however. In fact, the GeForce GTX 260 Core 216 can be had for about the same price as the Radeon HD 5770, but the GeForce outpaced the Radeon in every test. That said, the new Radeon HD 5700 series cards are strong performers at their respective price points, and they do offer features above and beyond anything else in their range, namely Eyefinity and DirectX 11 support. Couple that with low power consumption and low noise, and these cards become even more attractive.

If you're in the market for a new, affordable graphics card to go with that Windows 7 rig you've got planned, we'd say do yourself a favor and look into the Radeon HD 5700 series.

  • Low Power Consumption
  • ATI Eyefinity Support
  • DirectX 11 Support
  • Competitive Pricing
  • Quiet Operation


  • Performance On Par With Competing Offerings
  • DX11 Not Prevalent Yet

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