ATI Radeon HD 3870 and 3850: 55nm RV670

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For our next set of performance metrics, we spent some time overclocking the new Radeon HD 3870 and HD 3850 cards, using the Overdrive utility built into ATI's Catalyst drivers.

A New Overdrive Menu

As you can see, the latest revision of Overdrive is a vast improvement over previous offerings.  This revision of Overdrive now gives users the ability to individually overclock cards when running in CrossFire configurations.  It also has a new built-in test, wider frequency ranges, as well as GPU activity and temperature monitors.


Overclocking the Radeon HD 3870 and 3850

(Fast 3D Video Cards) + Overclocking = Even Faster Cards

To find the Radeon HD 3870's and 3850's peak core and memory frequencies, we slowly raised their respective sliders until we begun to see visual artifacts on-screen while running a game or benchmark, or until our test system was no longer stable

Radeon HD 3870 (Overclocked): GPU=845MHz, Memory=1186MHz
Radeon HD 3850 (Overclocked):
GPU=770MHz, Memory=1040MHz

Radeon HD 3870 (Overclocked): GPU=845MHz, Memory=1186MHz
Radeon HD 3850 (Overclocked): GPU=770MHz, Memory=1040MHz

Ultimately, we were able to take the Radeon HD 3870 up from its stock GPU and memory clock speeds of 777MHz and 1126MHz to 845MHz and 1186MHz, respectively.  The Radeon HD 3850 went from 670MHz (GPU) and 830MHz (Memory) to 770MHz and 1040MHz.  While both cards were overclocked, we re-ran a couple of high-resolution benchmarks and saw significant increases across the board.

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jtm55 7 years ago

 Hi All,


Great review on both cards. It looks as though AMD/ATI is back in the Graphics card game again. That's great for us Gamers because now Price Wars! 

I do have a question, has AMD/ATI abandoned the High End Graphics card arena? 


Dave_HH 7 years ago
Definitely not, at least according to our sources. The first half of 08 should bring new high-end toys from both sides of the Graphics pond!
ice91785 7 years ago

 Holy power consumption Batman!! It is definately a more utility bill friendly card than the 2900 (consuming about half its idle and load power) and the performance output really isn't bad at all -- as I would almost input that the 2900's was when compared to the 8xxx series especially with power consumption and price comparison was taken into the mix..

It's just too bad it took ATI more than a year to semi-catch up with nVidia's 8 series but hopefully they can stay on the ball eh? Exciting exciting.


BTW: if you admins are sick of these taking up space in the labs I can probably take them off your hands -- if you're lucky I mean Big Smile 


EDIT: Just also noticed the 8870s are quite a bit cheaper than the 8800GT's also .... what to do, what to do.... 

Grahf 7 years ago

Good to see DAMMIT is getting competitive again in the GPU market. They still need to get their high end parts up there though. Even though where the bulk of sales occurs is mainstream not having those high end parts affects people's purchasing decisions. People want to go with the company that looks like they are superior on all fronts. Hopefully their next GPU can actually rival Nvidia's high end. Image is important.

ice91785 7 years ago

 Well getting a 55nm process down for the GPU is pretty sweet in itself -- more space and less heat :) :) Too bad AMD isn't following this up with 55nm CPU  eh? ;)

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