PowerColor today said it "aims to blow gamers' minds" with its very first dual-GPU solution with AMD's Bart XT graphics engine, the PowerColor HD6870X2. As the name implies, this dual-GPU graphics card sports two 6870 graphics chips under its dual-fan cooling apparatus. That equates to 2,240 stream processing units and 4.03 teraFLOPS of computing power.
Popping up over the weekend is a somewhat blurry photo (cleaned up as best we could) of a completely naked dual-GPU prototype of AMD's Radeon HD 6870. The full frontal snapshot shows two Barts GPUs positioned in the middle of a long slab of PCB. Each GPU boasts 1,120 stream processors for a total of 2.240, and each with its own 1GB of GDDR5 memory, also visible in the picture.
Need a videocard but find yourself cramped for space? Unfortunately for you, many of today's mid-range to high-end graphics cards take up two slots, a necessary evil in order to cool today's increasingly power (and power hungry) GPUs. Fortunately for you, most board partners also like to experiment with their own designs, ditching reference blueprints in favor of their own cooling creations. It was this mindset that led Powercolor to launch the first single-slot Radeon HD 6850 videocard.
Powercolor, an old stalwart in the videocard business, appears to have picked up some inspiration from its peers and is branching off into new territory. Specifically, Powercolor just entered the power supply market with the introduction of its Extreme and Gaming series.
The Gaming models are available in 500W and 600W units, while the Extreme series is reserved for the 850W and 1000W models. All four are 80 Plus certified, with the Extreme series boasting 80 Plus Bronze certification. In addition, the Extreme series sport modular cables and a bigger 140mm fan, while the Gaming models use fixed cables and a 120mm fan.
Otherwise, Powercolor is touting mostly similar features across the board, including high quality Japanese made capacitors, CrossFire and SLI support, Active PFC, and multiple +12V rails rather than a single large +12V rail.
PowerColor today announced its LCS HD 5870 V2, an upgraded version of the original LCS HD 5870 that now "features unprecedented factory overclocked settings."
Calling it "unprecedented" might be stretching things a tad, but not by much. With the GPU factory overclocked to 950MHz, the LCS HD 5870 V2 matches Gigabyte's GV-R587SO Edition card, the only other HD 5870 GPU we spotted on Newegg clocked higher than 900MHz. More surprising, however, is PowerColor's decision not to goose the memory, which comes clocked at 4,800MHz, or 200MHz slower than the original LCS.
Like the previous version, only water cooling gurus need apply. The LCS HD 5870 V2 comes equipped with high-flow 3/8-inch and 1/2-inch fittings with captured o-rings to help prevent leakage.
"We got very positive feedback from the first version of the LCS HD 5870," said Ted Chen, CEO of TUL Corporation. "Now we released an upgraded version with factory overclocked settings and offer a cool working environment. We're sure that it will exceed expectations from gamers."
As with most of PowerColor's HD 5870 line, this newest release will come bundled with a Dirt 2 coupon, though the company didn't say when this will hit retail or for how much.
You know Bigfoot Networks as the company behind the Killer NIC series, which are cards designed to improve your ping, Internet connection, and even your framerates while gaming online. Many consider a dedicated NIC to be of dubious value, but would you feel the same way if it came integrated onto your videocard?
That's a question Bigfoot Networks and TUL (otherwise known as PowerColor) aim to find out. The two companies are working together on a combo card that will combine "best of breed PC graphics and networking for online gaming." They already have a prototype avaiable and plan to show it off during Computex in early June.
According to Bigfoot Networks, the combo card is built around ATI's HD 5000 graphics family. For what it's worth, Bigfoot is making much ado over this being the "world's first single card, PCI Express solution combining Bigfoot Networks Killer 2100 Gaming Network Card technology" and ATI's aforementioned graphics.
Computex runs from June 1-5, at which point we'll have more info on this.
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.