Radeon HD 3870 X2 launched
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Obviously, AMD has captured the title of “fastest single graphics card” with the Radeon HD 3870 X2. There is much to like here. The X2 is generally faster than the GeForce 8800 Ultra, and it has HD video decode acceleration that Nvidia’s older G80 GPU lacks. In all, the X2 looks to be a pretty good value in a single-card, high-end solution at $449. The X2 does draw more power and generate more noise under load than the GeForce 8800 Ultra, but it’s not unacceptable on either front for a card in this class. And the X2’s seamless multi-monitor support is the icing on the cake. I’m really pleased to see that working so well.
That said, the X2’s title is by no means undisputed. Nvidia’s best alternatives to the X2 are based on the newer G92 GPU and have support for H.264 decode acceleration themselves. For just a little more money, a pair of GeForce 8800 GT cards in SLI will outperform the X2, usually by a healthy margin…
We do have a new champ today, though, and it’s from AMD. Nice to see the title changing hands again, even if it took a dually to do it.