It will be yet another great option for those who don't have Crossfire boards. Digitimes reports that it will be priced between $299 and $379 for 512 meg and 1 gig versions.
Of course that meg will be divided between each GPU, as with the 3870x2. At any rate, it should give the 9600gt some competition in the mainstream until the 4850 takes over. I don't see it as a competitor for the 8800gts (unless you count older 320 meg versions).
What I don't get is Nordic Hardware reported on Feb. 15 that the 4850 will arrive @ $249 and the 4870 @ $299 this June. If Digitime's pricing is correct for the 3850x2's, then I think the 4850 and 4870 will be priced a bit higher.
ATI are releasing this card as direct competition for the 9800GTX so that price point is interesting. It's also an obvious stopgap before the HD4 series taht sre supposed to be a lot more powerful.
If I were them I'd try and get this card out earlier than May so that those wanting a high end card (but don't want / can't afford a 3870X2 or 9800GX2) don't get a 9800GTX.
After all it shouldn't be too difficult to Change the 3870X2 cards to accomodate the lower clocked 3850 derivative.
I'm guessing that the 4xxx series will be delayed, or at least the 4850. If this card arrives in May, I can't see the 4850 a month later.
Probably what we'll see are the 4870 and 4870x2 in June with the 4850 months later. That would allow ATI to milk the 3850x2 for all it's worth. I'd actually thought of the 4870 as the 9800gtx competition and the 4870x2 as the 9800gx2 killer.
Will this convince Huang that dual GPU cards are the wave of the future? Will Nvidia put out a dual 9600gt one one PCB to compete? Or will such a hypothetical card be another dual PCB monstrosity? The choices for GPU's get more complicated as new generations arrive; and not just due to odd naming schemes.
I think they have a lot RV670's in production and therefore would like to get rid of them. I don't think the 3850X2 will be in production for very long. Think you get rid of the chips 2 at a time making a healthy profit on each one.
I'd like to see the benchmarks for this card. I think with some overclocking it will come close to the 3870x2 (at least the 1gb model).
@yipsl - I notice you got your 3870x2 core oc'd but not that memory. I found that I can push the memory well over 901, I used 1050 and it was stable while playing games, however, I usually leave the OC off because I found I don't really need it.