Asus EAH4850 MT Republic of Gamers HD 4850 Reviewajmatson - January 22, 2009
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The EAH4850 MT uses a dual-slot cooling solution to keep the card's temperatures as low as possible, especially when overclocking. The ASUS EAH4850 MT uses the same GPU core that is used in the faster HD 4870 cards so there will hopefully be some nice overclocking potential here. ASUS used a black-colored PC board for the EAH4850 MT instead of the traditional red color that we see on a lot of ATI based cards from other manufacturers. However, what really sets this card apart from the other HD 4850's on the market is the software that ASUS uses to monitor and overclock the EAH4850 MT, which will give you an edge in gaming and benchmarking. The EAH4850 MT comes with the same clock speeds as the stock HD 4850 cards, but bumps it up with special overclocking features via the software, energy saving features, and the ASUS Hybrid Cooling system.
The ASUS EAH4850 MT has enough connections that just about anyone should be comfortable with. There are two DVI ports (the yellow DVI port can be converted to an HDMI port with the included adapter) and an S-Video out port that can be converted for component video out with the included dongles. To power the EAH4850 MT you still need to provide the 6-pin PCI Express power connection as in other HD 4850 cards. On the top spine of the card you'll find the two notches for the CrossFire connectors, which allow you to combine multiple cards for a powerful multi-GPU system.
With the heatsink and fan assembly removed we can get a good look at the brains and guts of the ASUS EAH4850 MT. As I mentioned earlier, the GPU is the RV770 core, which is clocked at 625MHz. There are also 965 million transistors, 800 stream processing units and the GPU is manufactured using a 55nm fabrication process. The memory chips used on the ASUS EAH4850 MT are manufactured by Qimonda (Model #HYB18H512321BF-10), which are clocked at 993MHz. However, they are rated for 1000MHz, so we should have some room to play with while overclocking. Near the front of the PC board is a special little chip called the ASUS Super Hybrid Engine. This chip controls the interaction between the hardware and the software to control the power needed to overclock the card, as well as power saving when the card is under-clocked.
Under the main cooler, ASUS has placed a RAM heatsink to keep the memory chips cooler and aid in obtaining the highest overclocks possible. The heatsink covers the memory chips with a thermal pad and attaches to the PC board via small screws. This keeps the heatsink secure without having it "glued" to the chips, which would otherwise cause damage if removed.
The cooler is a hybrid dual-slot cooler that uses a combination of a copper heat plate, aluminum heat pipes, aluminum fins, and a small fan. The fan pushes cooler air over the fins and blows the warm air out the rear of the case. Using a specially designed cooler such as this will allow for lower operational temperatures and greater stable overclocks. With the heating issues that plagued the early HD 4850 cards, using an aftermarket cooler is a smart decision on a higher-end card such as this.
Now how about we put this card all back together and install the software?