Sapphire HD4850X2 Reviewccokeman - November 3, 2008
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The Sapphire looks much like the non reference Asus HD3870x2 with the dual fan and heatsink combination and aluminum shroud. The Sapphire HD 4850X2 is PCI-E 2.0 compliant, supports DirectX 10.1, Shader Model 4.1, Unified Video Decoder, and 7.1 surround sound. Sapphire's HD 4850X2 features a clock speed of 625MHz on the 55nm RV770 GPU cores, and 993MHz on the 2GB of GDDR3 memory running on a 2x256-bit bus. What else is this little beastie hiding up its sleeves? How about 2.0 teraflops of computing power, almost two billion transistors, 1600 (2x800) streaming processors and an alternative cooling solution. This card uses a dual-slot cooling solution that physically takes up two expansion slots and is nearly as large as its big brother, the HD4870X2. To use the HD 4850X2 in a CrossFireX configuration, you will need a motherboard that has two PCI-E x16 slots and a power supply that can handle the additional load.
The Sapphire HD 4850X2 has something a bit different from the norm when it comes time to hook up to your display. There are not the normal two Dual-Link DVI ports but a total of four that allow you to use up to four monitors at once with the Sapphire HD4850X2. Along the back end of the HD4850X2 you can see that the power regulation department is heavily heatsinked to provide some longevity and stability to these components.
If you want to run this card in a CrossfireX configuration you will need to hook up the bridge connection between the two HD4850X2 video cards. You will notice there is only one bridge connection, why you ask when the standard HD4850 has two? Well, since you can only run CrossfireX with up to four GPUs, currently there is no need to add the additional connector into the design of the card. To cover the power requirements of up to 230watts the Sapphire HD4850X2 has both 6-pin and 8-pin PCI-E connections to provide this power.
Now that you have seen the card from top to bottom, let's see what it can do. Will it come close to the performance of the HD4870X2? Stick around to find out.