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Sapphire Radeon HD5750

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Posted November 1, 2009 by Jake in Video Cards

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by Jake
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Radeon 5700 Architecture

The Radeon 5750 is, in many ways, the culmination of ATI’s strategic decision to move away from the former titanic clashes with Nvidia in establishing framerate supremacy. It appears that ATI/AMD made a wise move toward not only the mainstream, but deliberately targeting a different market segment that didn’t need uber performance and was no longer content to mortgage away their hard-earned money for a graphics card. Very few gamers are able to pay for the uber graphics setup, and while it attracts much hype in certain circles, it’s not a smart business strategy to target a very small niche market to try to mount a financial comeback after being decimated by Nvidia barely 2 years ago.

So ATI’s push to produce capable gaming cards at moderate prices proved very successful with the introduction of their 4800 series cards, taking not only consumers by storm, but also catching Nvidia off guard as well. It has been a profitable strategy for ATI/AMD, seemingly evidenced by the fact that the vast majority of people don’t really care about a 7% performance difference, for example, especially considering they have no desire to pay a small fortune for that extra. Bragging rights don’t mean much these days, particularly with the economy in the tank.

To that end, ATI’s strategy has then logically led us today’s milestone: the 40nm 5700 and 5800-series GPU. This is the beauty of the Radeon 5750, as ATI has claimed the crown for the first to the 40nm finish line, beating Nvidia to the punch. More importantly, this appears to be a natural extension or evolution of ATI’s strategic positioning in the market, we anticipate continued success for ATI in the road ahead, at least for the foreseeable future. So ATI has a card on its hand that offers lower power consumption, lower temperatures, and lower production and retail costs for the masses: the Radeon 5750.

As you can see from the spec chart below, both 5700 series cards have 1.04 billion transistors but operate at different core and memory frequencies. Each card also runs at low power consumption, with the 5750 using well less than 100W at load, coming in around 86W.

To put it into perspective, the 5750 has fewer stream processors than the vaunted Radeon 4850 from the previous generation, but the 5750 has higher clock speeds at 700 MHz core and 1GB of GDDR5 memory operating at 1150 MHz, delivering 73.6 GB/sec of memory bandwidth. The 5750 is currently viewed as the "budget" entry-level DX11 card by ATI, with the 5770, 5850, and 5870 each sitting higher on the performance totem pole. But considering the Sapphire 5750 recently cost about $130 USD but has jumped of late to about $145 USD, but that is still is a very compelling price point for consumers when you consider what the performance offers. As you’ll soon see, it offers quite a bit actually.

The 5750 is essentially a 5770 that has been knocked down a rung on the graphics ladder by dropping the core and memory frequencies, along with fewer stream processors and texture units. The 5750 is positioned against Nvidia’s GTS 250.

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