ASUS Extreme AH3850 X2 1GB
Posted on: 05/17/2008 05:00 AM
Earlier this year ATI released the Radeon HD 3870 X2, which was their first real dual-GPU graphics card aimed at gamers. Today we have a less official dual-GPU graphics card that has been developed by ASUS, featuring two Radeon HD 3850 GPU’s. This new product will go head to head with the GeForce 9800 GTX, giving ATI a showing in the mid-range performance segment...
When it comes to making crazy, out there products, ASUS does not mess around and they have become well-known for their extreme motherboards and graphics cards. Remember the incredibly expensive P5K3 Premium motherboard? That was the motherboard that cost over $1000 US and featured 2GB of DDR3-1333 memory soldered right onto the PCB. Performance wise the design made sense and ASUS was able to provide this memory with a serious amount of cooling.
As interesting as the idea was, financially it did not make sense due to the excessive pricing of DDR3 memory. More recently ASUS was the first manufacturer to deliver a modified version of the ATI Radeon HD 3870 X2 graphics card, providing users with an out there alternative to the standard design. ASUS not only beefed up the cooler, but they also overclocked the card right from the word go, giving Extreme AH3870X2 TOP owners an edge over everyone else.
Recently ATI/AMD kind of did, kind of didn’t, announce that there would be a Radeon HD 3850 X2 to combat the new GeForce 9800 GTX. Actually, it would seem that they have left that decision up to the graphics card manufacturers, giving them the freedom to do what they wish with the Radeon HD 3850. Already ASUS has come up with a few creative ideas, one of which includes a triple GPU card based on three RV670 MXM modules that would be water-cooled.
The more conservative approach was to simply take the existing Radeon HD 3870 X2 design and replace the Radeon HD 3870 GPU’s with Radeon HD 3850 GPU’s, giving us the Radeon HD 3850 X2 and this is precisely what ASUS has done. For those that are wondering why we would want a Radeon HD 3850 X2 the answer is simple enough. The ASUS Radeon HD 3870 X2 costs roughly $400 US, while the ASUS GeForce 9800 GTX costs $340 US. The GeForce 9800 GX2 on the other hand costs a whopping $530 US, pricing it well above the Radeon HD 3870 X2 and GeForce 9800 GTX graphics cards.
Now while the GeForce 9800 GX2 is in most cases much faster than the Radeon HD 3870 X2, the Radeon HD 3870 X2 is also faster than the GeForce 9800 GTX. This means that each of these three graphics cards do slot into their own pricing category quite well, even if the GeForce 9800 GX2 is a little rich. The ASUS Radeon HD 3850 X2 on the other hand is already available and retailing at $340 US, placing it in direct competition with the GeForce 9800 GTX. So which of the two should you buy?
Printed from Legion Hardware (http://www.legionhardware.com/articles_pages/asus_extreme_ah3850_x2_1gb,1.html)