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ATI’s Radeon HD 5770 And 5750

Radeon HD 5770 And 5750 Review: Gentlemen, Start Your HTPCs
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There’s really no need to rehash all of the architectural elements that comprise the Radeon HD 5770 and 5750—if you want to know more about how ATI improved this generation’s architecture over RV770, check out our original Radeon HD 5870 review. When I say that the Radeon HD 5770 is half of that flagship, I’m being literal.

As mentioned, the Juniper GPU consists of 1.04 billion transistors (to Cypress’ 2.15 billion). It sports 800 ALUs (to Cypress’ 1,600). It leverages 40 texture units (to Cypress’ 80). It boasts 16 ROPs (to Cypress’ 32). I think you get the picture here. If not, a die block diagram comparison should do the trick:

Mid-Range: JuniperMid-Range: JuniperHigh-End: CypressHigh-End: Cypress

Even the speeds and feeds work out comparatively. Radeon HD 5870 employs 1GB of GDDR5 memory running at 1,200 MHz, delivering 153.6 GB/s. The Radeon HD 5770 also sports 1GB of GDDR5 at 1,200 MHz, serving up 76.8 GB/s. Eight hundred “shader processors” times 850 MHz times two gives the Radeon HD 5770 1.36 TFLOPS of compute power, versus the 5870’s 1,600 * 850 MHz * 2 = 2.72 TFLOPS.


Radeon HD 5770
Radeon HD 5750
Radeon HD 4870
Compute Performance
1.36 TFLOPS
1.008 TFLOPS
1.2 TFLOPS
Transistors
1.04 billion
1.04 billion
.956 billion
Memory Bandwidth
76.8 GB/s
73.6 GB/s
115 GB/s
AA Resolve
64
64
64
Z/Stencil
64
64
64
Texture Units
40
36
40
Shader (ALUs)
800
720
800
Idle Board Power
18W
16W
90W
Active Board Power
108W
86W
160W


Thus, all of the same architectural balancing that went into the Radeon HD 5870 should carry over here, and we should see a performance picture as good or better than what ATI’s Radeon HD 4870 was able to do, given its 800 shader processors at 750 MHz (totaling 1.2 TFLOPS)and GDDR5 memory running at 900 MHz.

Oh, but there’s a rub. The Radeon HD 4870 also employed a 256-bit bus, giving it 115.2 GB/s of memory bandwidth. We’ll have to see how that notably different specification affects the overall performance picture. If there's an Achilles's heel that causes the 5770 to stumble, that will be it.

The Radeon HD 5750 centers on the same Juniper GPU as its big brother. ATI disables one of the chip’s 10 SIMD cores, switching off 80 ALUs and four texture units. The processor’s core clock is then decelerated to 700 MHz, yielding a nice round 1 TFLOPS of compute muscle. ATI doesn’t mess with the GPU’s back-end, so you still get 16 ROPs and a 128-bit memory bus loaded with 1GB of GDDR5 memory. However, the clocks there are slightly lower too, yielding 73.6 GB/s from the 1,150 MHz RAM.

The Boards

The Radeon HD 5770 itself is shorter than the Radeon HD 5850, which was already shorter than the behemoth Radeon HD 5870. At 8.5” (an inch less than the 5850), it’s a very chassis-friendly card.

As with the larger Cypress board, the 5770 employs rear-mounted auxiliary power, though it only needs one connector instead of two. Further, ATI recesses the plug a bit, so protruding cables are less likely to get in the way.

Back of the Radeon HD 5770Back of the Radeon HD 5770

We were already blown away by ATI’s efforts to minimize power consumption with the Radeon HD 5870 and 5850. However, the smaller Juniper die is even more miserly. At idle, the Radeon HD 5770 is rated at just 18W (down from the 5850’s 27W and the 4870’s ravenous 90W). Under load, the Radeon HD 5770 uses just 108W (versus the 5850’s 151W). Already you can see how this might be the world’s most perfect HTPC card. But wait…there’s more.

ATI’s Radeon HD 5850 sports an entirely different design. Up until now, all of the 5000-series cards have featured enclosed shrouds with blower-type coolers that exhaust air from a vent on each card’s I/O bracket. The Radeon HD 5750 sports a simpler dual-slot heatsink/fan combination. The PCB is shorter still at 7.25,” and it likewise comes equipped with a single auxiliary power connector.

Back of the Radeon HD 5750Back of the Radeon HD 5750

This could be an even better solution for big-screen gamers and theater enthusiasts. Lower clocks and a simpler cooling implementation mean a slightly more conservative 16W idle footprint, and a load requirement of up to 86W. As we’ll see in the benchmarks, this is no speed demon (at the risk of ruining several pages worth of data, it’s a bit quicker than a Radeon HD 4770); however, you’ll find that’s often enough to play at 1920x1080. And the addition of Eyefinity/bitstreaming really makes the 5750 a shoo-in for quiet environments in need of performance and better functionality.

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Top Comments
  • 31 Hide
    Summer Leigh Castle , October 13, 2009 4:54 AM
    Can we BOLD or change the color of the card that's being reviewed?
Other Comments
  • 31 Hide
    Summer Leigh Castle , October 13, 2009 4:54 AM
    Can we BOLD or change the color of the card that's being reviewed?
  • 2 Hide
    masterjaw , October 13, 2009 5:12 AM
    Nice one, but the charts are a bit cluttered without giving emphasis on the featured cards (bold fonts, etc). A media card that could do games pretty good.

    I'm quite agree with the nvidia's G92 still hanging around but looking at their newly released cards (gt220, 210), I don't know what to say anymore. Hopefully, they're making the right choices at the right time.
  • 0 Hide
    megamanx00 , October 13, 2009 5:13 AM
    Looks to me like the 5770 really needs faster memory speeds, though that would defeat trying to make it cheaper, and perhaps a higher core clock. Perhaps we'll see some factory overclocked cards with memory that can reach a significantly higher speed.
  • 1 Hide
    JohnnyLucky , October 13, 2009 5:17 AM
    Power consumption, temperature, and noise levels are very encouraging. I just finished reading other reviews where the 5700 cards are described as mid-level and mainstream cards.
  • 1 Hide
    buzznut , October 13, 2009 5:22 AM
    If I was building today (htpc), I would still go with a HD4670. Who knows six months from now...
    Those other features are compelling. If I could afford 2 more monitors that is.
  • 1 Hide
    cangelini , October 13, 2009 5:23 AM
    Summer Leigh CastleCan we BOLD or change the color of the card that's being reviewed?


    For sure--I've looked into this and would be happy to implement, but haven't had much luck. Any Excel gurus able to get only certain axis labels bolded without changing the entire series?
  • 1 Hide
    noob2222 , October 13, 2009 5:28 AM
    Quote:
    and bitstreaming HD audio in an HTPC (a reason to buy a second card for the living room).


    Personally I use my main computer as my HTPC, after all, I can't play games and watch movies from 2 different rooms at the same time, and all it takes is the HDMI cable (at least until they make it wireless.)
  • 1 Hide
    cangelini , October 13, 2009 5:35 AM
    That works as well. But for someone with a triple-head setup *and* an HTPC, I can justify both usage models.
  • 9 Hide
    lashabane , October 13, 2009 5:52 AM
    I'm looking to upgrade from my dated 3850 and was thinking that these would really impress me for the price. I'm thinking I'll just spend the bit extra and get the 5850 when the prices come down.

    Of course, I wouldn't have been able to make such an informed decision so early if it weren't for TH and columnists such as yourself.

    Thanks for another great article Chris.
  • -4 Hide
    ambientmf , October 13, 2009 5:53 AM
    What's the benefit of DirectX 11 capabilities if the cards are worse performing than last gen cards in DX9/10 games? I'd rather get a 4800 series card, being a gamer myself, for slightly better framerates.
    I can see the other benefits for the hardcore HTPC crowd though.
  • 2 Hide
    greglouganis , October 13, 2009 5:53 AM
    Question... Why are the power consumption values in comparison to the GTS 250 in this review so different from the ones posted here: http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/geforce-gts-250,2172-10.html ? This 5770 review lists the system at load with GTS 250 within a handful of watts of the system with an HD 4870 or GTX 260, while the older review (and many other sources of information) seem to suggest at least 20-30 Watt gap.

    I'm running a GTS 250 1 GB on my PC just fine at the moment (but cutting it close), and I was under the impression that I would need to upgrade my power supply as well if I changed to anything more powerful than it/hd 4850... The main reason I was so interested in this article was to see if a 5770 would be worthwhile upgrade (I don't intend to replace PSU anytime soon), but this data here seems to suggest that I would fine jumping up to a 5850!
  • 4 Hide
    DjEaZy , October 13, 2009 6:06 AM
    ... if it's ATi, give some credit to AMD and do a AMD based machine too... pretty please?
  • 4 Hide
    deadlockedworld , October 13, 2009 6:22 AM
    I would add a third group of potential buyers: people looking for low power consumption, or seeking to maximize performance on a 400-450w psu?

    I would have liked to see the old 4850 in here too, even though its similar to the 4770..
  • 0 Hide
    CoryInJapan , October 13, 2009 6:22 AM
    I got my 4870 OC'd to 4890 specs almost a month ago.I dont feel smug at all because I got it for 112 bucks open box brand spankin new and out performs the 5750 and 70 so Im cool. .....for now...
  • 1 Hide
    cangelini , October 13, 2009 6:30 AM
    greglouganisQuestion... Why are the power consumption values in comparison to the GTS 250 in this review so different from the ones posted here: http://www.tomshardware.com/review [...] 72-10.html ? This 5770 review lists the system at load with GTS 250 within a handful of watts of the system with an HD 4870 or GTX 260, while the older review (and many other sources of information) seem to suggest at least 20-30 Watt gap.I'm running a GTS 250 1 GB on my PC just fine at the moment (but cutting it close), and I was under the impression that I would need to upgrade my power supply as well if I changed to anything more powerful than it/hd 4850... The main reason I was so interested in this article was to see if a 5770 would be worthwhile upgrade (I don't intend to replace PSU anytime soon), but this data here seems to suggest that I would fine jumping up to a 5850!


    Greg, we switched testing methodology for power consumption earlier in the year--I suspect this is where the gap comes from.

    The GTS 250 has a maximum board power of 150W. Given the 5850's revised board power of 151W, I suspect you'd be in great shape if you upgraded to that one at some point without a power supply problem (so long as you have something in the 450W range?)
  • 0 Hide
    cangelini , October 13, 2009 6:30 AM
    lashabaneI'm looking to upgrade from my dated 3850 and was thinking that these would really impress me for the price. I'm thinking I'll just spend the bit extra and get the 5850 when the prices come down.Of course, I wouldn't have been able to make such an informed decision so early if it weren't for TH and columnists such as yourself.Thanks for another great article Chris.


    Thanks Lash--glad you enjoyed the story!
  • 0 Hide
    Proximon , October 13, 2009 6:45 AM
    I continue to be in awe of your conclusion writing skills, Chris. You always observe something interesting and useful.

    One thing I haven't seen mentioned... can you double up Eyefinity with two cards, for 6 monitors? We get traders on the forums regularly looking for ways to get 5 or 6 monitors on a budget.
  • 0 Hide
    cangelini , October 13, 2009 7:47 AM
    Thanks much Prox
  • 0 Hide
    Sihastru , October 13, 2009 7:58 AM
    ProximonOne thing I haven't seen mentioned... can you double up Eyefinity with two cards, for 6 monitors? We get traders on the forums regularly looking for ways to get 5 or 6 monitors on a budget.
    No, and not even in CFX, at least not in a way to combine the resolution... you could run 3 of them independently of the other 3, but where's the fun in that? I think they are doing it on purpose to protect their upcoming 6 mini display port card that should have a nice price premium for that software "functionality".
  • 0 Hide
    randomizer , October 13, 2009 8:15 AM
    This is the only review I've seen which shows Batman with PhysX enabled (HardOCP was the only other site I found that used Batman in their review but without PhysX). That ~15FPS cap is very interesting. How did you go about enabling PhysX in this? Did you use the "hack" to run it on the CPU?
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