The 5850 is unavailable now and It probably will be for a couple of weeks. What I'm wondering is will they release newer versions of the 5850 with better cooling and higher clockspeeds $20 or $30 cheaper in the near future? What has history shown?
I would imagine new non-reference designs will start to pop up sometime mid-november or so. Don't hold me to that, but it usually takes about 1-2 months to really get creative new designs out there and the reference designs to kinda fade away.
So I couldn't wait and bought the reference HIS HD-5870 but would like to add cross-fire effentually. If a new design comes out, unless it's a water block it will still be compatible with my card for X-Fire right?
The 5850 reference card seems to perform very well in terms of temps/noise. I don't see a non reference design being a whole lot better. The 5870 is the card that could really use some aftermarket and non reference loving.