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ATI Radeon HD 3870 X2 - Fastest Yet!

The Review

As with the previous articles, every card has been tested in real life conditions, games being played during well defined sequences, with Fraps taking care of recording the number of images per second.

Resolutions have evolved though. Those of LCD screens have priority, and given the performances of those cards we've measured in 1680x1050 (24") and 1920x1200 (26, 27"). In a dedicated page, we'll also evaluate some cards in 2560x1600 (30").

Test setup

Test setup (2)

We've also included a hardware Crossfire based on a Radeon HD 3870 (775/1125 MHz) and a Radeon HD 3850 512 MB overclocked to 730 / 880 MHz as we lacked a second Radeon HD 3870. This second card is only 6% slower than an HD 3870 and shows a 22% slower bandwidth, which doesn't hinder it too much as we'll see later on.

The test setup also changes

Test Setup
CPUIntel Core 2 Extreme QX6850 (Quad-core 3 GHz)
MotherboardAsus P5E3 Deluxe (X38)
MemoryCrucial 2 x 1 GB DDR3 1333 MHz 9-9-9
Hard DriveWestern Digital WD5000AAKSHitachi T7K250
DVD ROMDVD Player Asus 12x
Power SupplyCoolermaster RealPower Pro 850W
DriversCatalyst 8.1 beta (8-451-2-080108a)ForceWare 169.28 beta