You know, I started testing the cards without looking at it's final pricing. My initial reaction was that the 5770 is going to be a very capable, mature and feature rich DX11 class graphics card. I did however expect a little more bite in performance as I expected the shader processor count and memory bandwidth to be somewhat higher.
But here's the thing, I also expected the 5770 to cost 200 USD. And that's where I was wrong. The Radeon HD 5770 is set to go on sale for just $159, while the cheapest entry in the 5700 series, the Radeon HD 5750 is priced in the $109 / 129 USD bracket. We can obviously only speak out on tested products but yeah at 159 USD the Radeon HD 5770 makes a whole lotta sense to me alright. But sure .. we expected a little more bite.
This series is the first ever mid-range DX11 class product series that is affordable, comes with a great feature set, and is highly competitive performance wise. The product positions itself in-between the Radeon HD 4850 and 4870 performance wise, yet has a far more advanced feature set.
What about NVIDIA you ask ? In case you didn't notice, at the green side NVIDIA right now is on a DirectX 11 bashing marketing program. The program there goes like this: DX11 games won't arrive until next year so why purchase a DX11 card ? Well, next year when a lot of games WILL start supporting DX11, you can rest assured that your card is compatible and that you are not stuck with an outdated DX10.0 class product. For your future game path, DX11 is an upgrade train you do not want to miss out on. Why is NVIDIA doing this ? Well, they just do not have their DX11 class products ready and selling on the market.
Enough on that topic though. So at 159 USD you can purchase a DX11 class card with pretty decent performance alright. Added benefit is Eyefinity technology. Now I do not see you playing modern games on three monitors with this card as that might be a little overkill on the GPU, but if you'd stick to say 3x 1280x1024 it might be doable. It's an added 'free' feature.
Stability wise we have had no issues whatsoever except the afore mentioned texture bug in Anno 1404, which hopefully will be fixed real soon. We see commendable performance and great image quality as well. CrossfireX scaling as shown in this article is also very nice, in fact it surprised me a couple of times. You'll quickly gain 1.7x performance in a two-way GPU setup, and that definitely is a lot of performance for the money.
The biggest culprit of the 5770 series will be it's memory bandwidth. So if you purchase a card and have a need for overclocking -- the memory is the golden nugget you are after. Extra bandwidth will help out greatly.
We makes us curious is that there now is a huge gap in-between the 159 USD 5770 and 269 USD 5850 in terms of performance and price. What does ATI have lined up in there ? Obviously Guru3D's smells a 256-bit version of the 5770 luring arround the corner.
I'd also like to comment on the HIS card we tested. HIS as always is doing a little extra and should be applauded for that, please give them a visit over here. Their card is as great as the reference card, in fact it's 100% the same. HIS however tops off the bundle, the multi-purpose magnetic screwdriver with LED plus a dust wiper and then a full version of the game Colin McRae Dirt 2 download coupon; well that makes this purchase really good value -- especially in the mid-range segment. As such the award to the right is a gaming essential award we'd like to hand out to HIS.
So yeah, again we end with an AMD/ATI product and use that one word again .. value.
The bottom line is really simple: With the Radeon series 5700 products, and in specific the 5770 -- ATI brings an intensely feature rich product to the market that offers plenty of performance for current and modern games. It has good cooling and offers less noise compared to a 4850. So if you are in the mid-range market right now seeking a new graphics card, we can recommend it wholeheartedly.
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