When AMD launched the Radeon 6800 series back in October, we suggested that some people might be confused by the naming scheme. The Radeon HD 6870 & 6850, code-named Barts, were actually midrange GPUs, and not replacements for AMD’s high end Radeon HD 5870.
Now AMD is releasing its high end GPU, code-named Cayman, in two versions. The high end, which AMD calling its “enthusiast” GPU is the Radeon HD 6970, while the Radeon HD 6950 slots into a space between the 6870 and the 6970. What’s more, the HD 6870 doesn’t replace the dual-GPU Radeon HD 5970. If all that seems once again confusing, it probably is. It’s probably best just to consider AMD’s current naming scheme as unrelated to its old one, despite similarities.
Read on for more info, and all the benchmarks you can handle!
You should have no trouble getting your game on this holiday shopping season. Let's recap your latest options. OnLive just launched its Micro Game console for $99, Nvidia recently outed its GeForce GTX 570 GPU, and according to DigiTimes, AMD is preparing to launch its new Radeon HD 6970 and HD 6950 graphics cards (Cayman) in the third week of December.
Citing un-named sources, DigiTimes says AMD's HD 6970 isn't quite up to par with Nvidia's GTX 580 videocard, so you can figure AMD's part to cost around $50 to $70 less. Previous rumors suggest this flagship part will come with 2GB of memory on a 256-bit bus chugging along at 1375MHz, 96 texture units, 32 ROPs, and a core clockspeed of 880MHz.
How many of these cards will actually be available in December remains to be seen. There's already talk that initial shipment volumes will be limited, so if you're holding out for one of these parts, get your trigger finger ready starting December 15th.