Palit HD 4870 Sonic Dual Edition 512 MB 32

Palit HD 4870 Sonic Dual Edition 512 MB Review

A Closer Look »

The Card

Palit has stayed with the dual-slot cooling concept of the HD 4870 but completely revamped the cooling solution itself. The card is now cooled by two fans, one 80 mm and one 70 mm. Also the extra space on the slot cover has been used to add a DisplayPort connector and a turbo switch.

The card has two DVI ports and one DisplayPort connector. In case you need an analog VGA port you can use the included DVI adapter. When using an HDMI adapter (also included), you will also have access to HDMI+HDCP+Audio, which allows easy setup of a media PC. All recent ATI Radeon cards have a Realtek HD Audio device integrated inside the GPU silicon. This means that you don't have to connect any additional cabling to the graphics card for HDMI Audio. A new feature of the HD 4xxx Series is support for 7.1 HDMI audio, the older HD 3xxx cards supported only 5.1. While the DisplayPort is certainly a nice addition it is still very new and supported only by a handful of displays.

On the bottom right corner of the slot cover you will find this little Turbo switch. The switch toggles between two BIOSes which are using different frequencies. Normal mode runs the card at 750/950 MHz and Turbo mode runs at 775 / 1000 MHz. Other than that the BIOSes seem to be identical, fan and voltage settings are the same.
Because the system switches access to the BIOS, the changes will only be applied when the BIOS is read from the card which is at reboot. A nicer (and much more complex) solution would be if the clocks would instantly change. An increase of 25 MHz on both clocks will not make that much of a difference, but having two BIOSes unlocks additional potential for tweakers. First it is a safeguard against a corrupted BIOS and second you could put your own customized BIOSes with tweaked settings on those cards.

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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