updated 08:00 am EST, Wed November 18, 2009
ATI Radeon HD 5970 boasts 3200 cores
AMD on Wednesday bragged of the graphics performance crown with the launch of the ATI Radeon HD 5970. The card uses two 5800 series chipsets on one card to provide the most performance possible. While each has the speed of a 5850 with a 725MHz primary clock speed and 1GHz GDDR5 memory, the 3,200 stream (effects) processors, 160 texture units and 2GB of memory give it as much performance as two 5850s but in half the space.
Two 5970s can be combined in CrossFire mode for even more performance in those games that support it.
The part is based on the newer 40 nanometer manufacturing process and as a consequence consumes relatively little power at idle, at 42W. DirectX 11 (and OpenGL 3 equivalent) feature support remains intact, as does support for Eyefinity with three displays and OpenCL computing on those platforms that recognize it. Two dual-link DVI ports and one DisplayPort output are common on reference boards.
Multiple cards should be available today from third parties such as ASUS, Diamond and MSI at about $599. PC builders should also have access to the technology for their own in-house designs.