Conclusion: Sapphire's Radeon HD 4770 Gets A Recommendation
ATI rules the marketplace when it comes to inexpensive, energy-efficient graphics chips. The Radeon HD 4670 has plenty of power for DirectX 10 and offers solid graphics quality and supports high resolutions. HIS offers two great products here: a passively-cooled model with a Zalman cooler and another with an active, but very quiet, IceQ cooler. If you double up two Radeon HD 4670s in a CrossFire configuration, you’ll wind up with a wholly respectable graphics set-up, because the second card boosts graphics performance by nearly 90%.
The more powerful Radeon HD 4770 offering from Sapphire also makes things tough for Nvidia's mid-range lineup. Even though the new GeForce 9800 GT from Zotac makes a good showing in terms of performance, it gets bested by this card in power consumption thanks to its 40 nm process technology. The Radeon HD 4770 is nearly as fast as dual HD 4670s in CrossFire mode, and is much more energy efficient than the GeForce 9800 GT.
HIS has delivered some superior designs—the IceQ cooler makes its Radeon HD 4670 nearly inaudible and earns our nod, even in a CrossFire configuration. With its passively-cooled Radeon HD 4670, HIS also offers a great product for quiet PC aficionados, who love its energy efficiency and quiet operation. The Radeon HD 4830 is a price-effective dark horse, but will disappear from retail shelves soon. Our top recommendation goes to the current Sapphire Radeon HD 4770 for its excellent pricing, performance, and quiet operation. Fortunately, it also seems that supply of these boards is finally improving, meaning enthusiasts can actually get their hands on them.
|Sapphire HD 4830 512 MB||93||916.8||0.101|
|Sapphire HD 4770 512 MB||102||981.8||0.104|
|Zotac GeForce 9800 GT 512 MB||135||961.1||0.140|
|HIS H467QT512P CF||81||1169.1||0.069|
|HIS H467PS1GP iSilence||127||545.0||0.233|