I'm pretty familiar with the Nvidia numbering scheme (ie how a 8800 and a 260 are different). I'm new to ATI though, and I'm not clear on their numbering scheme yet.
If I'm not mistaken, the 4000 series is the newest, the 4800s are the most powerful new ones, and that 4890 is the most powerful within that group. I could be completely wrong, but that's the impression I have.
Anyways, I'm interested in finding out which ones are the older series from ATI, and I'd like to know what the differences are between the 4890 and its same-level predecessors. From taking a look at old Nvidia stock, I can see that the older cards have dropped significantly in price. I imagine the older ATI cards have as well, and I'm wondering if getting the newer card is worth the extra money paid for it.
So, if someone could explain ATI's numbering scheme, that would be ideal, and if I could get someone to point me in the right direction to find benchmarks or something between ATI's different generations of cards, that would be awesome too
I would recommend that you get a card from the current 4000 series instead of an older one because for the same price you can get a better card in the 4000 series rather than the 3000 series. The 4770 and 4850 are both very good cards in a medium price range. If you are not looking for advanced gaming graphcis the 4830 is a cheap and very good solution for watching movies etc.
The bottom one is (I would think) slightly less powerful, except that I think it's got 2 chips in it (that's what X2 means, right?). I'm not sure whether having the two chips would make up for the lower level chip architecture or not....
What do you recommend? (Even if you recommend a completely different card, so long as it's still ATI, I'd love to hear it)
Why only ATI, whats wrong with nvidia!!?? I have always used nvidia cards because of driver issues with ATI which are still ongoing.
You are correct in the saying that the 4850 x2 has 2 chips, it is litterally 2 4850's attached together into one card. The 4890 is a new card which I think may currently have a few issues with drivers.
If you are looking for the best performance then I would possibly look at the 4870 x2 which is the model up from the 4850 x2. It is a bit more expensive but is the ultimate in graphics performance. If you hold off for a few weeks the 4890 x2 should be released but prices are still not known.
I don't really have anything against nvidia, but ATI tends to be less expensive and my system is set up for AMD/ATI.
Anyways, all the 4870 X2 cards are quite a lot more expensive (more than I'm willing to spend). I haven't yet found one under $500 (CND). I'll look around some more, but let's say that if I was to get an X2 card, it would have to be the 4850. Should I go with a super-powered single card, or the X2?
If you look at some benchmarks for the 4850x2 you will see that it performs closely to the 4870x2, maybe average of 15% slower. If money is tight then I would get the 4850x2, I have one and it's a monster of a card ! Only thing is the stock fans can get noisy at full load.
If you play at 1920*1200 or higher res, you should get the 2gb model.
@Hammeh: PSU is all in order, that was the next thing I checked before I made the decision ^_^ It's 750W... that thing's monster enough to take everything except some crossfired configurations.
@smartel7070: I might take another look at the 4850 x2, but I decide that money's too tight for the 4870 x2, then I'll probably move to one of the more powerful single nvidia cards. I had thought that a single 4890 was on par with an nvidia 280, but the 280 and 285s are more powerful by a pretty decent amount, so those are probably my second-best choices.
4890 matches the 280 easily, and the OC versions (1ghz) are just as fast as the 285's.
Truth be told, once you are at that level the performance the difference cannot be noticed unless you play at 2560x1600 resolution. It's all about money at the top end, and whether or not you think paying $50-$100 more is worth the rapidly dimishing returns on fps.