AMD Releases Dual-GPU Graphics Card

Sunnyvale (CA) - AMD returns to the high-end of the graphics card segment with the Radeon HD 3870 X2.

It has been a while since we have seen a high-end graphics card from AMD/ATI in the $450 and higher market. And some felt that Nvidia has held the title of graphics performance leader for far too long and has become a little too comfortable at the top spot. AMD is challenging Nvidia with its first dual-CPU card, which, according to first reviews, in fact is able to reclaim the performance crown from the green team.

The 3870 X2 integrates two, Crossfire-linked 3870 GPUs on one board. Compared to the 775 MHz core clock for the regular 3870, the GPUs on the X2 board run at 825 MHz. The memory clock, however, is down from 2.25 GHz to 1.8 GHz. AMD claims that the 1.3 billion transistor card with a total of 640 stream processors card will deliver a processing horsepower of 1 TFlops, which would mean that the performance scales linearly from the regular HD 3870, which is rated at about 497 GFlops.

First reviews of the graphics (read Tom's Hardware's review here and Anandtech's article here) confirm AMD's claim that the X2 can edge out Nvidia's 8800 Ultra card. But Nvidia is already prepping its next-generation product and it will be more important for AMD to position its graphics cards against its rival more effectively in the future.

Radeon HD 3870 HD cards are expected to sell for about $450.