ASUS RADEON HD 4850/4870 and GeForce GTX 285/295
A few interesting graphics cards.
April 17, 2009
Performance in games
- Intel Core2 Extreme QX9650 (3000 MHz) CPU
- Zotac 790i Ultra motherboard on NVIDIA nForce 790i Ultra
- 2GB DDR3 SDRAM Corsair 2000MHz
- WD Caviar SE WD1600JD 160GB SATA hard drive
- Tagan TG900-BZ 900W PSU
- Windows Vista 32-bit SP1, DirectX 10.1
- Dell 3007WFP 30-inch monitor
- ATI CATALYST 9.2; NVIDIA 182.08 drivers
- VSync disabled
- Far Cry 2 (Ubisoft) -- DirectX 10.0, shaders 4.0 (HDR), built-in benchmarking utility (the Middle level), maximum settings.
- S.T.A.L.K.E.R. Clear Sky 1.507 (GSC Game World/THQ) -- DirectX 10.0, maximum quality settings (dynamic lighting enabled); demo, copy files to the savegames folder, run the game, load level 'ixbt4', and type "demo_play ixbt4" in the console. This game does not support AA.
- 3DMark Vantage 1.02 (FutureMark) -- DirectX 10.0, shaders 4.0, multitexturing, 'Extreme' settings.
- CRYSIS 1.2 (Crytek/EA), DirectX 10.0, shaders 4.0, 'Very High' settings, 'Rescue' level; batch file, e-mail us to obtain the timedemo.
- CRYSIS Warhead (Crytek/EA), DirectX 10.0, shaders 4.0, 'Very High' settings, 'Cargo' level; batch file, e-mail us to obtain the timedemo.
- Company Of Heroes Opposing Fronts (Relic Entertainment/THQ) -- DirectX 10.0, shaders 4.0, maximum settings; batch file, run the game, invoke graphics settings and click the test button.
- World In Conflict 1.007 (Massive Entertainment/Sierra) -- DirectX 10.0, shaders 4.0, 'Very High' settings with adjusted AA and AF; run the game, invoke graphics settings and click the test button.
- Devil May Cry 4 (CAPCOM) -- DirectX 10.0, 'Super High' settings with adjusted AA and AF; Scene 1.
- Lost Planet Extreme Condition Colonies Edition (CAPCOM) -- DirectX 10.0, 'Super High' settings (with adjusted AA and AF); Scene 1.
S.T.A.L.K.E.R. Clear Sky
Far Cry 2
World In Conflict
Crysis Warhead, Cargo
Company Of Heroes Opposing Fronts
3DMark Vantage Graphics MARKS
Devil May Cry 4, Scene 1
Lost Planet Extreme Condition Colonies Edition, Scene 1
ASUS EAH4870 MATRIX (RADEON HD 4870) 512MB is a good modification of the 4870 card with an excellent cooling system and slightly increased operating frequencies, which don't yield noticeable performance gains.
ASUS EAH4850 MATRIX (RADEON HD 4850) 512MB is a standard 4850 card (in frequencies and performance) with a very good cooler. This card produces a positive impression. However, we should take into account relatively inexpensive GeForce GTS 250 cards that already appear on the shelves. They are strong competitors for the 4850, so keep tabs on their prices.
ASUS ENGTX295 (GeForce GTX 295) 2x896MB is a standard dual-GPU GTX 295 card that differs from the other products in the bundle only.
Our tests of the GTX 295 prove that the technology of uniting two GPUs with a driver or other software has lots of underlying potential problems. Another warning for those who want the most powerful solutions: be ready that your dual-GPU card won't be lightning fast in a new game just because the driver does not support this game yet. We hope that programmers from NVIDIA (and AMD with its 4870 X2) will promptly add support for all new games into their drivers.
I want to repeat that GTX 295 is a very fast card, the first of its kind so far. But will it come with an adequate price tag? Perhaps it will be cheaper to buy two GTX 280 cards, which will be apparently faster in SLI mode. It's up to you to decide. Just keep tabs on the prices, and then draw your own conclusions.
ASUS ENGTX285 TOP (GeForce GTX 285) 1024MB is the standard GTX 285 card with a tad higher operating frequencies and a bonus in the bundle. Nothing else.
ASUS ENGTX285 Ultimate (GeForce GTX 285) 1024MB is a similar product, only its frequencies are higher. It's presently one of the fastest GTX 285 cards, which can catch up with the RADEON HD 4870 X2. Even if it's slower in some tests, proceeding from what we wrote about dual-GPU cards, I would still prefer an overclocked GTX 285 to the 4870 X2.
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