The Radeon HD 4850 was extremely quiet at idle, but its big brother can’t boast quite the same performance – despite the change to a dual-slot fan, the Radeon HD 4870 tends to be a little less quiet at idle according to the sound-level meter, even if the difference is relatively slight in practice. At 1045 rpm – only 12% of its maximum rotation speed – its fan can still be considered quiet.
Under load, the trend was reversed. While the HD 4870 is clearly not as quiet as the Radeon HD 3870, it’s still tolerable overall (the fan ramps up to 1600 rpm), and a lot quieter than the very noisy GeForce GTX 260.
I have the 4950 and it is great
however, what are the possibilities for a CUDA like processing environment or handling Physics engines? I think AMD has done a great job making a pure video card, but I believe the future will be with unified technologies of having the GPU assist in other tasks as well.
Time will Tell
see how much I could gain by upgrading. Maybe thats an update to the desktop charts that just hasnt been dont yet? Seems like it would have already been.
The 4850 went up 6* and the 4870 went up 10*... I think the 4870 went up more, but you (Tom's) said it went up less.
LOTS of enthusiasts are planning a Nehalem build toward the end of the year. I image they will be getting 4850/4870s or GTX260/GTX280s. All depending on where the prices are I imagine.
I agree about the charts. I don't consider buying a 4870 vs an older card like an x1950, but it sure would be nice to see how much it has improved over time.