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ATI Radeon HD 5670: DirectX 11 For $99

Radeon HD 5670: The Reference Card

Despite a list of fairly respectable specifications, the Radeon HD 5670 doesn't appear to be a formidably-sized card (a nice change from the behemoths that were the Radeon HD 5970 and 5870). Barely seven inches long, it's a single-slot board with a small enough cooler to keep weight down to a minimum. The physical dimensions are extremely close to Nvidia's recently-released GeForce GT 220, another card in roughly the same price range and also with a 40nm GPU.

Note the lack of power connector. Based on its specifications alone, the Radeon HD 5670 is expected to claim the title of "fastest reference graphics card without a dedicated power connector" from Nvidia's GeForce GT 240. That's the reference design, mind you. PowerColor is selling a modified Radeon HD 5750 without a power connector. But this is still a noteworthy accomplishment, and it speaks to the card's low power usage and heat output.

It is interesting that the reference model AMD sent us did not sport a CrossFire bridge, whereas the images of another reference card the company sent over did have the connector in place. AMD let us know the card can be run in CrossFire without the bridge, and that this class of card actually works well without one. This is because it isn't able to move as much information between cards as the higher-end models, and consequently won't saturate the PCIe interface. Apparently, the decision is being left up to the card vendor whether or not to include the CrossFire connectors for the bridge. Unfortunately, without bridged and un-bridged models to play with, we won't be able to test the performance impact of running one way or the other until a later date.

This reference model they sent includes DVI, HDMI, and DisplayPort outputs. We'd have preferred two HDMI outputs in addition to the DVI (or two DVIs and an HDMI), as DisplayPort cables aren't quite mainstream yet. But with DisplayPort becoming more prevalent on graphics cards and monitors, it's only a matter of time before DVI and LVDS are both replaced by DisplayPort. There is some flexibility in the hands of the manufacturers here as another reference model in some pictures they supplied has a VGA, HDMI, and DVI output. As we mentioned, the Radeon HD 5670 can technically handle four outputs, so we expect certain vendors to design and market an Eyefinity-edition sooner or later with a dual-slot bezel and enough slot space to handle more connectors.

Here's the heatsink removed. And here's a close-up of the GPU. Hard to believe this little puppy has more ALUs than the once-flagship Radeon HD 2900 XT, huh?

  • amdfangirl
    4800x900? Are you serious?

    Otherwise, great review. Just curious, are you going to make Flash 10.1 playback a benchmark? I'm just interested.
    Reply
  • amdfangirl
    Oh yes, could you add the hierarchy chart and show where the HD 5670 fits in?
    Reply
  • stridervm
    I wish there was a Radeon 4850 in the comparison chart for.... Comparison....
    Reply
  • noob2222
    If it weren't for the 4770, this would be priced decently, at the same price it kills the 240. If they were to lower the price to $80 for the 5670, the 240 would get the dumb buy of the year award. IMO $90 would be about right, $80 is definatly too cheap.

    Here it will have to compete against the similarly-performing $80 GeForce 9600 GT

    ... wrong. it won crysis, was close in far cry2 and Hawx. It was slaughtered in the rest of the games by the 5670.

    Reply
  • notty22
    ..................Radeon HD 5670 Radeon HD 4770
    Shader Processors 400 640
    Texture Units: 20 32

    Color ROPs: 8 16

    Those numbers against the 4770 show, a crippled card. Is this to leave something in the cupboard for the next generation ?
    Just meh, no reason for this card to exist at all.

    Reply
  • belial2k
    I think the points made here about the pricing could be made about the entire 5xxx series. At no point in the entire line is there a GOOD value. Everything can be beaten in price/ performance by previous generation cards or combination of cards...even the 5870 loses badly to two 4890s for less money. The only thing they have going for them is DX11 and eyefinity, which for most gamers are rather questionable "value" adds because of the huge hit DX11 gives framerates and the 3 monitors needed for eyefinity. All these cards need to come down in price before they become smart price/performance buys.
    Reply
  • duckmanx88
    notty22Just meh, no reason for this card to exist at all.
    low price point, low power consumption, and extremely close to the 9800GT in performance. Plenty of reasons to like this card. especially for a casual Sims or Torchlight gamer.
    Reply
  • cleeve
    noob2222It was slaughtered in the rest of the games by the 5670.
    "Slaughtered". +1 for hyperbole!
    Reply
  • noob2222
    Cleeve"Slaughtered". +1 for hyperbole!What would you call 12-20% faster across the board?
    oh, right, "similar" noting like the pot calling the kettle black huh.
    Reply
  • Otus
    4850 and 4770 will be out soon and prices for what units are left will probably rise in price. There's probably room for price cuts for 5670 at a
    Reply