Breathing New Life into the ATI 4XXX Lineup:
There is no denying that the 4XXX series cards and specifically the 4870 saved ATI while at the same time giving Nvidia a kick in the gut. The 4XXX cards were released at just the right time to catch Nvidia without the ability to provide immediate competition and also at such a low price point. All that performance came at a price or rather at a temperature. The 4XXX cards ran hot and demanded a lot of power.
Today AMD/ATI seeks to breath new life into the 4XXX lineup with the release of the 4890 and 4770 cards squarely aimed at taking a chuck out of the vast majority of the video card market. Most users, while interested in the ultra high performance cards will end up buying a mid ranged card which impacts their wallet less. It should come as a relief to many consumers then that the new 4890 comes with a price tag of $249 or $229 after MIR (mail in rebate). At this price point you can expect two results:
- ATI will gain further foothold and share in both the high end and mid range markets.
- Nvidia will move to quickly reduce the price of its GTX 280 and new GTX 295 cards.
Both of these reactions are good for you and me as they mean we will be gaming on better equipment at a lower cost. Fans of both Nvidia and ATI should embrace this release as good news, but does the 4890 have what it takes to de-thrown the 280 let alone the monster 295 Nvidia cards and is that even what the 4890 is aimed at?
Our Test Sample:
Our sample used for this review came to us from HIS and is the 4890 Turbo Edition. As you will soon see the default clock rate of the 4890 is 850MHz GPU while our sample came clocked in at 900MHz GPU.
Here are some images: