AMD Radeon HD 5870 1 GB GDDR5 225

AMD Radeon HD 5870 1 GB GDDR5

A Closer Look »

The Card

AMD's latest ATI Radeon card looks mighty powerful. For me this is the best looking (and feeling) card that I ever had in my hands. The matte surface conveys a feeling of understatement and high quality. The subtle reds are a clear statement that this is an AMD/ATI card, yet it does not look overdone. Even though the black backplate serves no cooling purpose it does look great and adds a layer of protection to the card, so you can't break off small components.

From left to right: Radeon HD 4870, GeForce GTX 295 Single PCB, Radeon HD 4870 X2, Radeon HD 5870. As you can see this is a very long card, so make sure it will fit in your case. Also it is important to note that the red air vents near the back of the card do not serve any cooling function. They can be fully covered and the card will still pull in enough air via the fan hole.

Dual slot card, no surprises here. The red trim on the side, with the "ATI Radeon" text, is aligned so that it can be read when the card is installed in a normal case with window.

On the back plate you have a stamped ATI Radeon Premium Graphics logo which will also be visible if you have a case window.

The card has two DVI ports, one HDMI port and one DisplayPort. This is just one of many output configurations that are possible on the new cards, thanks to the overhauled display output logic. Basically the card can drive six TMDS signals that can be combined in any way (a dual-link DVI consumes two TMDS lines).
For HDMI Audio, NVIDIA requires you to feed an external audio source, for example from your motherboard's on-board audio, to the card via SPDIF cable. AMD on the other hand has integrated a sound device inside their GPUs which is the easier solution for most users. Also AMD's integrated sound device has been upgraded to support HDMI 1.3a which includes Dolby TrueHD, DTS-HD, AC-3, DTS and up to 8.1 channel audio with 192 kHz / 24-bit.

On the back of the card you see two nicely styled air vents that look great, yet have no cooling function. Most air is sucked in via the fan opening.

Crossfire dual, triple and quad configurations are supported to improve performance even further.

Here are the front and the back of the card, high-res versions are also available (front, back). If you choose to use these images for voltmods etc, please include a link back to this site or let us post your article.
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