Recently we received confirmation that the first retail samples of ATI's R420 (AGP Radeon X800) will debut April 26 as Radeon X800 Pro. ATI's naming scheme for R420 has been closely guarded, but the open term we hear from vendors is "Radeon X800."

What seems highly unusual is the scheduled introduction of Radeon X800 XT on May 31st; only a month after Radeon X800 Pro's unveiling. Recall that Radeon 9800 and 9800 XT were launched six months apart. We can speculate ATI has either changed their marketing strategy, or the difference in performance between R420 and NV40 hastens ATI's release schedule. Further inspection of the ATI roadmaps reveals that "Non-Pro" Radeon X800s are absent. Perhaps "XT" has replaced the "Pro" Radeon series, and "Pro" thus replaced the "Non-Pro" Radeon series. Even though the initial launches of Radeon X800 will use 256MB of GDDR3, before the end of the year we also anticipate a 512MB revision. Furthermore, we will almost certainly see Radeon X800 SE with 128MB of DDR1; which will also debut with much a lower clockspeed.

R423, the PCI-Express (PCX) version of R420, is scheduled to launch June 14th. Specifications on R423 are identical to R420, and the cards will also carry the Radeon X800 product name.

RV380 and RV370 will also receive new product names, as Radeon X600 and Radeon X300, respectively. For more details about R420, RV380 and RV370, please take a look at our previous ATI roadmaps here. Stay tuned for more ATI and NVIDA news from the trenches.

Update April 9, 2004: We just received confirmation that X800 Pro will run on 12 pipelines, Radeon X800 XT will run on 16 pipelines and Radeon X800 SE will run on 8. It is important to note that all three of these chips are based on the same R420/R423 core. ATI could have an overclocker'ss/softmodder s dream with the X800 Pro and SE derivaties! This also comes as somewhat of a surprise since original leaked ATI documents claimed R420 would utilize 8 "Extreme" pipelines.

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  • TauCeti - Wednesday, April 07, 2004 - link

    >Trogdor: Personally, I think the Radeon cards should have been called Radeon A800 and A600

    Come on. That would translate to a Radeon 43008 and a 42496 if you start using base-16 :))
    Reply
  • Warder45 - Wednesday, April 07, 2004 - link

    The guy in the article on the front page liked it to when the first GeForce card came out. Reply
  • TrogdorJW - Tuesday, April 06, 2004 - link

    Get real, AW. What do you want them to do? Release two cards with equivalent performance, except one is PCIe and the other is AGP, and call them different names? Like that's any better. The real names will be Radeon X800 Pro, and on the box will be a sticker saying whether it is PCIe or AGP. GeForce 6800 is also relatively reasonable, although I'm sure the GeForce 6850 Ultra or something will come out not too long after. Again, Nvidia cards will probably have a sticker or something stating whether the card is AGP or PCIe.

    Personally, I think the Radeon cards should have been called Radeon A800 and A600 (for the version with half as many pipelines). The next cards could be the B800 and B600.... That would get you all the way up to F800 and F600 before you ran out of four digit "numbers". Of course, some of you are probably going to complain about hexidecimal not being a well-known number system among the commoners.... ;)

    Final thought is that someone commented on how big of a jump it was from an 8500 to a 9700. Well, it wouldn't have been quite as impressive if you had gone from a GF4Ti to a 9700, but the possibility for the 6800 cards to actually be almost twice as fast as current top cards is real. Rumors are saying that 3DMark03 scores of 12,500+ are being hit with the G6800. It's not the be-all, end-all benchmark, but if a card can score 12,500 at standard settings in 3DMark03, that card will be a pretty massive step up from the current cards. Then your CPU will be the major bottleneck again. :p
    Reply
  • bobsmith1492 - Tuesday, April 06, 2004 - link

    (did have space) that is... Reply
  • bobsmith1492 - Tuesday, April 06, 2004 - link

    Great... now video cards have more than twice the ram as my first hard drive did! (: Reply
  • AtaStrumf - Tuesday, April 06, 2004 - link

    So nVidia finally got rid of the bad omen that the FX sufix was. Good for them! ATi's new name isn't bad either. It sounds fresh. Let's just hope the perfomance of the two new cards will be as refreshing, rather than depressing, like the last two generations.

    I must admit I'm a bit surprised to see NV40 before R420, but than again they're both late this year.

    As for 512 MB of on-board memory. For now it's definately a hideous overkill, but the not too distant future DX9 titles are supposed to be able to use that kind of capacity. Just hope the price doesn't go through the roof.
    Reply
  • aw - Tuesday, April 06, 2004 - link

    Come on...are you serious. I was obviously exaggerating. Imagine for one second that you aren't a uber nerd that you are and you were Joe schmoe at Best Buy. Which one sounds better to you (Please note that neither name is descriptive in the least bit)

    ATI Radeon 9800 XT
    ATI Radeon AGP X800 Pro
    ATI Radeon PCX X800 Pro
    Nvidia geForce 6800 AGP
    Nvidia geForce 6800 PCX

    You can try and say it makes sense...but it doesn't. It's retarded. What does X mean anyway...10? so it's 18000? You are right, they have simplified some...woohoo. Nividia is definately better than ATI. But still, why did FX ever exist in the first place. It took them a long time to realize it was stupid. SE, XT, and Pro make a little sense if they are consistent. Which obviously isn't happening. So Ati has gone full circle and come to 10000 so now they have to go back down. Since stupid nvidia thought they had to match the 1000 numbers of ATI after Geforce 4...my god what are they gonna do. God knows X800 Pro sounds better than geForce 6800...maybe??? It cracks me up. Both sides have backed themselves into a completely incomprehensible naming corner and I love it! Consumer confusion is good. At least for Anandtech. It's just the more people who come here to figure it out, which is fine with me. The whole thing just makes me laugh.
    Reply
  • Staples - Tuesday, April 06, 2004 - link

    And another comment, I doubt either of these cards will have the performance jump of the R200 to the R300. I probably will just stick with my 9700NP because the price of these cards might actually be more than $500 (for the high end ones). I had an R8500LE before the 9700NP and I waited 8 months for the price of the 9700NP to come down to $200. Unless there is just a monsterous performance gain, I doubt that the price premium is worth the purchase. Reply
  • Staples - Tuesday, April 06, 2004 - link

    I hate all these naming conventions. They are used to confuse the customer and that they are doing well. Reply
  • Icewind - Tuesday, April 06, 2004 - link

    I've got my $500 raring to go whomever is the winner!! Reply

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