ATI Mobility Radeon HD 4000 Series Preview

Introduction and Specifications

One of the ways AMD is able to test and qualify ATI Mobility Radeon GPUs, without having to design and build numerous mobile reference cards that fit in multiple notebook form factors, is to produce fully-loaded, custom reference cards that'll fit into standard PCI Express x16 slots. The cards won't be used in any actual retail product, but they allow AMD to test all of the various features and functionality, and experiment with clock speeds and voltages to fine tune and balance performance, thermal output, and power consumption.

ATI Mobility Radeon HD 4000 Series

What you see pictured here is just such a card. The item pictured below is an ATI Mobility Radeon HD 4670, PCI Express-based reference card. We talked about the new mobility Radeon HD 4000 series during CES earlier this year; more details are available at this link. The reference card pictured here is equipped with every type of output supported by the GPU--Displayport, DVI, VGA, S-Video / HD component, and HDMI--and it even has CrossFire connectors for experimenting with multi-GPU configurations.  We've had a couple of Mobility Radeon HD 4670 and 4500 class reference cards in house for a while now, and have a sneak peek at approximate performance using a desktop platform for testing on the pages ahead.


ATI Mobility Radeon HD 4670 Reference Platform

The Mobility Radeon HD 4670 and 4500 series cards we received for evaluation looked nearly identical, save for the the memory chips used on each card, hence the single set of pictures above. The Mobility Radeon HD 4670 we tested features 320 stream processors, with a core GPU clock frequency of 675MHz, and 512MB of GDDR3 memory running at an even 800MHz. It's a relatively high performance offering that will be positioned in upper--mainstream market segments. The Mobility Radeon HD 4500 series offering sports only 80 stream processors, but with a 680MHz core GPU clock, and 256MB of GDDR3 frame buffer memory also running at 800MHz, but connected via a 64-bit interface--the 4670 has a 128-bit memory interface. The Mobility Radeon HD 4500 series will be positioned in thin and light market segments.

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