PowerColor might as well have said that its new PCS+ HD5550 is made from bits of moon rock and unobtanium. Instead, the graphics card maker claims its latest videocard is the "most affordable GDDR5 graphics solution," which also isn't true. It took us all of three seconds to find a videocard on Newegg with GDDR5 memory selling for just $50, and wouldn't you know it, it's also made by PowerColor.
More accurately, the PCS+ HD5550 is the only HD 5550 videocard with GDDR5 memory, at least on Newegg. All the other models come with either GDDR2 or GDDR3 chips. PowerColor's version is also factory overclocked past reference specs, with the core and memory clockspeeds at 650Mhz and 900MHz, respectively.
"This is the very first time we are bringing the PCS+ series to the value segment," said Ted Chen, CEO of TUL Corporation. "With superior overclocking ability and advanced GDDR5 onboard memory, the PCS+ HD5550 creates out-of-the-box gaming performance. This will bring this value segment solution a new level."
The PCS+ HD5550 is supposedly available now, though we haven't been able to spot one for sale online in the U.S. And while there was no word on price, PowerColor's GDDR3 version streets for about $70.
Have you ever seen a videocard with 5 mini DisplayPorts? You have now, thanks to Powercolor, who this week announced its HD 5770 Eyefinity 5 videocard.
"As the first graphics solution to support up to 5 displays, the Powercolor HD 5770 Eyefinity 5 delivers an immersive HD gaming performance with wider field of view and increases productivity at the same time," says Ted Chen, CEO of TUL Corporation.
Of course, trying to run a high-end game across 5 monitors on a mid-range card may prove a bit challenging, but if you've ever wanted to try, you now can. Powercolor's card comes with the core clocked to 850MHz, while the memory races alonga t 1200MHz on a 128-bit bus.
The Radeon HD 4830 at the heart of this card is a cut-down version of AMD’s second-best graphics processor, the RV770. The 4830 has 640 stream processors, compared to the 800 processors in a higher-end card such as the Radeon HD 4870.
The 4830 is designed to run at slower clock speeds, too, and PowerColor sets this model to operate its core at 575MHz and its 512MB of GDDR3 memory at 900MHz. These are pretty hobbled specs compared to those of the reference-design Radeon HD 4870, which boasts core and memory clock rates of 780MHz and 1GHz, respectively.
Whereas AMD’s Radeon HD 4830 resembles a Radeon 4870 after a partial lobotomy, the Radeon HD 4850 that sits between these two cards comes with a full complement of 800 stream processors. But don’t make the mistake of thinking you can overclock a 4850 board to achieve the same performance as one based on the 4870: The latter uses GDDR5 memory while the former is limited to GDDR3.
PowerColor this week announced a new series of videocards it says are "environmentally friendly and cost efficient to the consumer." Kicking off the new Go! Green series is a pair of ATI cards - the HD 4650 and HD 4350.
Both cards come equipped with PowerColor's custom Silent Cooling Solution (SCS) passive heatsink, with the HD 4650 version adding heatpipes to the mix (SCS3). Partially as a result, PowerColor claims its HD 4650 consumes 38 percent less power than an Nvidia GeForce 9500GT videocard, while the HD 4350 boasts a 24 percent power savings over the Nvidia GeForce 8400GS. Likewise, the HD 4650 and HD 4350 offer up to 22 percent and 36 percent better performance than each one's respective Nvidia equivalent, PowerColor claims.
Availability is expected in July, but no word yet on price.
You knew it would happen sooner or later, the only question being which company would be the first to offer a 2GB graphics card? PowerColor answers that question today by annoucing the world's first videocard carrying a 2GB frame buffer. Or more accurately, the world's first desktop graphics card packing 2GB of memory, as workstation cards have already reached that milestone.
The fat frame buffer will first appear on PowerColor's PCS HD4850 built on ATI's RV770 core and use GDDR3 memory instead of the newer (and more expensive) GDDR5. PowerColor advertises a "massive memory bandwidth up to 57.6GB/sec" capable of "providing faster graphical performance," though it remains to be seen what impact the additional memory will have on gaming performance. Along with the added memory, PowerColor also says the new card will utilize its Professional Cooling System (PCS), which the company claims will result in up to a 10C drop in temps.
PowerColor certainly seems exciting over its announcements. Question is, are you?
Having designed the graphics architecture for Microsoft’s Xbox 360, ATI’s management had boasted for months ahead of its acquisition by AMD that its engineers were experts at designing the type of unified shader architecture envisioned by DirectX 10. Imagine our surprise when the R600 not only hit the market several months after Nvidia’s take on unified architecture but that the company’s best offering can’t compete with Nvidia’s top two GPUs.