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ED#100 : NVIDIA Responds To The ATI Radeon HD 4870 X2
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ED#100 : NVIDIA Responds To The ATI Radeon HD 4870 X2

With the launch of the ATI Radeon HD 4000 series of graphics cards, NVIDIA's advisories have started sounding a little "desperate". This didn't use to be the case when ATI was shipping barely competitive cards like the Radeon HD 2900 XT.

The increasing desperation was particularly evident in the most recent advisory, which was sent out when ATI launched the eagerly-awaited Radeon HD 4870 X2 dual-GPU graphics card. From the way NVIDIA was attacking the Radeon HD 4870 X2 in the advisory, you might be forgiven for thinking that NVIDIA was the underdog fighting to survive.

To be fair to them, NVIDIA is not the only one to employ such tactics. They are merely the latest to do so. Let's take a look at their latest advisory. Our comments will be coloured red.


Price Comparison

Based on what we've seen in 4870 X2 preview reviews, we believe the best price-performance comparison would be versus GTX 260 SLI.

* The 4870 X2 uses two GPUs, so it makes sense to compare to an NVIDIA dual-GPU configuration in the similar price category as the primary comparison.

* If you look online at E-tail sites, you should see many GTX 260s sell for $269 after rebate, and some as low as $249.

* Two GTX 260's in SLI mode are comparable to the Radeon HD 4870 X2 in both price and performance.

Our check of Pricegrabber showed that the lowest price for the GTX 260 was US$269.99 for an MSI GeForce GTX 260. Most of the cards were priced higher at US$280-330. Although the Radeon HD 4870 X2 has a MSRP of $549, its street price is likely to drop below that after the initial buying frenzy. Unless NVIDIA adjusts their pricing, the Radeon HD 4870 X2 should cost less than two GeForce GTX 260 cards.

Frankly, as far as pure performance is concerned, does it really matter whether the card has a single GPU or ten? Certainly, the 4870 X2 isn't as elegant a solution as a single-GPU graphics card but it is still a single slot graphics card. In fact, it is a far more elegant solution than NVIDIA's GX2 cards which use two PCBs.

Initial benchmark results show that the NVIDIA GTX 260 SLI may actually be a lot faster than the Radeon HD 4870 X2 in some games (e.g. Crysis), while the 4870 X2 is a lot faster in other games. In fact, the ratio seems to be around 30:70 (in favour of the 4870 X2) at this point in time.


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NVIDIA Responds To The ATI Radeon HD 4870 X2


Price Comparison


Key Product Differentiators


Additional Points To Consider



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