Performance Summary and Final Thoughts
Performance Summary: With the exception of the Company of Heroes testing, the MSI R4850 512M performed on par with the reference GeForce 9800 GTX and the overclocked ASUS EN9800GTX TOP, which is what we expected considering the GeForce 9800 GTX+ was released (and priced) to compete directly with the Radeon HD 4850. At times, the R4850 512M even kept up with the more powerful Radeon HD 4870 and GeForce GTX 260, but those results would most likely change if a faster host processor is used.
What is so great about the MSI R4850 512M is how much performance you get for your hard-earned dollar. And that performance isn't just about FPS. You also get excellent cooling performance. The standard MSI R4850 with the reference ATI cooler can be purchased online for about $190 at the time of this publication. For only $5 more (or about $195), you can grab an MSI R4850 512M with the custom cooler like we reviewed here. That seems like a no-brainer to us. If you want an MSI Radeon HD 4850, opt for the R4850 512M unless you absolutely can't take up an extra slot in your system.
To be fair to other Radeon HD 4850s out there, we have to mention that the MSI R4850 512M is a bit more expensive than many of the other 4850s that we found online. If you like the R4850 512M and are okay with its price, then we doubt you'll be disappointed if you decide to purchase one (or two). On the other hand, if you just want the cheapest 4850 currently available, then you should shop around a bit before making your decision.
|• Excellent performance
• Efficient and relatively quiet cooler
• Great bang for the buck
• CrossFireX support
|• Dual-slot card|
• More expensive than many other 4850s