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PowerColor HD4870 Review

ajmatson    -   June 26, 2008
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Conclusion:

I went into this review with high expectations after testing the HD 4850 and seeing how well it did. I kept asking myself, is this the smoking gun that ATI has brought to the table in the Russian Roulette game between the two major video card manufacturers? Will this be what ATI needs to finally bring a hurt to NVIDIA and show that it still has the guts and glory to bring to us consumers what we crave? Just like the HD 4850 review I did a few days ago, ATI has really come out and produced a wonderful series of video cards. The HD 4870 provided performance once only seen in cards that were so expensive only a few could afford one. Here you have a frame busting card for not a lot of money. The raw performance produced from the HD 4870 is earth shattering considering its price to performance ratio. PowerColor has once again outdone itself bringing us the HD 4870 video card.

The heating issues still seem to plague the HD 4800 series. Be it a driver problem or lack of cooling hardware, something needs to be done to bring these temperatures down for me to be comfortable running this card in a machine that stays on 24 hours a day. I would recommend either purchasing an aftermarket cooler to bring down the temperatures or be patient until a fix is available, be it a BIOS update or a third party tool that can be used to adjust the fan speed. Eighty six degrees Celsius under load is scary. Beyond that, I see the HD 4870 taking the market by storm.

 

Pros:

  • Performance equal to or better than the GTX 280
  • GDDR5 memory
  • Inexpensive compared to other cards in its class
  • CrossfireX support for multi-GPU setups
  • On-Chip HDCP
  • 55nm manufacturing process
  • Built-in HDMI and 7.1 surround sound support

 

 Cons:

  • Still has the heating issue
  • GPU not as overclockable as the memory
OCC Gold



  1. Introduction & Closer Look
  2. Closer Look (The Video Card)
  3. Configuration (Drivers and Programs)
  4. Configuration (Catalyst Control Center)
  5. Specifications & Features
  6. Testing: Setup & Overclocking
  7. Testing: Crysis
  8. Testing: Knights of the Sea
  9. Testing: Bioshock
  10. Testing: Call of Duty 4
  11. Testing: World In Conflict
  12. Testing: Call of Juarez
  13. Testing: Company of Heroes: Opposing Fronts
  14. Testing: 3DMark06
  15. Conclusion
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