ASUS HD4850 - first tests of the latest GPU AMD RV770
AMD has released the GPU RV770 and so far the only video card on its base – Radeon HD4850. What merits a separate mention is the fact that the new product is the lower-end representative in the Radeon HD4800 family, so it should be of less "demand". Perhaps in this way AMD wants to show that even a lower-end video card is capable of doing much. Running ahead, we say that AMD has succeeded in that. The new chip indeed has proved a real success, without any reservations. We will introduce you to the specifics of the interior arrangement and the architectural novelties of the new chip a bit later. But now we are anxious to present ASUS EAH4850 and the results of its tests.
The box is made in a style typical of ASUS. The orange color shows that the video card belongs to the Radeon family.
The box can be opened up like a book where you can read about ASUS' proprietary utilities.
The package bundle of the video card is quite interesting:
- power supply adapter for PCI-Express video cards;
- S-Video/Component out adapter;
- DVI -> D-Sub adapter;
- DVI -> HDMI adapter;
- CrossFire bridge;
- CD with drivers (missing for our specimen);
- Documentation CD;
- leather wallet for 16 CDs;
- leather mouse pad;
- brief installation guide.
ASUS EAH4850 is manufactured following the reference design, that is, it differs from the "regular" Radeon HD4850 in only the proprietary sticker. Externally, the new product looks very much alike to its predecessor - Radeon HD3850.
To provide contact of the GPU with the cooling system, heat-conductive grey paste is used. To fill the air gap between the other items of the video card and the cooling system, a soft rubber-like cream colored material is used.
The radiator is made of copper and aluminum parts. The pad contacting the GPU is raised relative to the radiator's plane, whereas the plane itself is closed with a transparent plastic film. Such a structure protects the items of the video card against short-circuiting the radiator and is typical of all AMD video cards made following the reference design.
On the front side of the radiator, under the plastic housing, there are many glued thin copper sheets bent like a sleeve. They are in turn blown with a fan to the right. To improve heat transfer, a heat pipe pressed into the radiator's base is used. We should say the video card remained quiet during all the tests.
Unlike Radeon HD3850 or Radeon HD3870, the eight memory chips of the new Radeon HD4850 are positioned in an L-shaped pattern. Radeon HD4850 is lower in the RV770 family, so it is equipped with GDDR-3 memory, while the higher-end Radeon HD4870 will be equipped with GDDR-5 memory. Some minor changes have been introduced to the power-supply subsystem of the video card, although the number of GPU power phases, judging by the throttles, is still four as before.
The new chip RV770, as compared to the predecessor RV670, has acquired a metal edging. The GPU operating frequency on HD4850 is 625 MHz.
The memory chips are made by Qimonda and offer 1.0 ns access time, which is equivalent to the effective frequency 2000 MHz at which it runs in the nominal mode.
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