Tuesday, May 15, 2007

TECH: AMD Finally Releases ATI Radeon HD 2900XT

After so much hype, so many promises, and so many delays, comes AMD's Radeon X2000 range of DX10-compatible video cards. Being one of the top discussion points for geeks-who-love-controversy, alongside Vista, Sony's PS3, and AMD's own 2006 takeover of ATI, the launch of AMD's X2900XT tomorrow heralds the start of a new generation of video cards for PC & Mac users. More after the jump below.

The new AMD / ATI Radeon HD 2000 family consists of the HD 2400, HD 2600 and HD 2900 graphics processing units (GPUs). Formerly known by the codenames RV610, RV630 and R600, only the R600 -or X2900XT is being released. With all lines coming in at least two variations -the Pro and XT, with higher clock speeds, RAM capacity, and an increase in stream processors being the main differences.

The three new product categories:

- Radeon HD 2400 - value segment (sub US$100)

- Radeon HD 2600 - mainstream segment (sub US$200)

-Radeon HD 2900 - enthusiast segment (US$300+)

The X2900XT is the only card with a definite launch tomorrow -the value and mainstream segments get taken care of sometime in July, according to AMD.

AMD pairs the 700 million transistor-count X2900XT with 512Mb of GDDR3 memory. The memory comes clocked at 1.65Ghz and communicates with the GPU through a 512-bit memory interface. By comparison, Intel's latest CPU has a transistor count of just 291 million.

Much like Nvidia's G80 series (8500 / 8600 / 8800), the HD 2000 series possesses the ability to process physics effects with the help of the unified shader requirement, coming in as part of the DX10 criteria. New to the HD 2000 series however, is the integrated 5.1 surround sound capability -through HDMI no less.

Still, all of this is pretty much useless until we actually get some f&*iup9cking DX10 games to play them on. Until then, Vista, the 8800Ultra, and HD 2900XT are all a complete and utter pile of wasted cat shit. Bring it on Crysis. Bring it. (And bet your ass you'll need to upgrade pretty much every single component in your PC to play it too...)

Click on the links below to see VR-Zone's full review of the X2900XT.

Click to read VR-Zone X2900XT in-depth review

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