ATI RD580: Dual x16 Crossfire Preview

by Wesley Fink on 11/16/2005 3:00 AM EST
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  • aepurniet - Friday, January 27, 2006 - link

    all these crossfire motherboards (480 / upcoming 580), look like they are gonna only support one processor. is there ever gonna be a dual processor crossfire enabled motherboard? ive been holding out on a puny laptop for a while, but it looks like im not going to be running crossfire anytime soon. my plan was to get tyan 2895, dual 7800gtx's. the x1900 looks like a good competitor but might sit all alone in that box, with having the chance of its crossfire brother ever dropping by. Reply
  • Wesley Fink - Friday, November 18, 2005 - link

    A reader has sent me links to press releases that show ULi pioneered HD Audio on the AMD Athlon 64. We made a couple of corrections in the article to reflect that information. Reply
  • Clauzii - Thursday, November 17, 2005 - link

    Man - it´s amazing to see how many can get over xited of a preview .. Geeeeezzzzzz.
    Nice preview and then we aaallll wait for the card to settle to market and in january the world will change!
    Reply
  • Kiwi - Monday, March 06, 2006 - link

    What strikes me about all of this is that it's now March, and some actual MB's are in the market with 939 sockets, but the article about the release version of the Chip Set, now named "Express 3200" can't seem to get out of Purgatory.

    I think that I've seen the article posted three times over the past month, but it is always removed again in less than a single day. I wonder what the problem is? Anything to do with a majority of MB makers holding off to use the new chip sets with AM2 sockets instead of 754/ 939?


    K.

    Reply
  • tajoh111 - Thursday, November 17, 2005 - link

    I have a ati card in my laptop, my desktop, even my pocket pc. Heck even my gamecube has a Ati card in it. The only nvidia product I own is in my xbox and thats it.

    I just believe ATI should be punished for their idiocy this year.
    - Lack of products.Besides the 1800XL what have they brought to the table.
    - Lack of availiblity(out of stock).
    - Lack of warrenty.
    - There only competent product that beats nvidia in any sense, is the GTO2, and even that is a result of their idiocy, to improperly lock pipelines.
    - A inferior product at every pricepoint.
    Midrange 800 xl nvidia 6800 gs, 1800xl, 7800gt, and 1800xt, 7800 512 gtx.

    ATi just has an excuse for everything and anandtech just believe it all. Like the lack of the ATI cards is because of memory(bull), or the performance problems are a result of immmature drivers(shouldn't a product in development for the longest time have decent driver, rather then a buy now fix later idea).

    Really those now, Wes, it not like we have to shop around for a 450 dollars 7800 gtx. Pretty much everyones sells the evga for 450.
    Which offers a lifetime warrenty and the a step up program.

    With the 1800 xt, you get a slightly better performing product, that uses lots more power and produces alot more sounnd. Could you imagine a crossfire 1800xt, you probaly grow mentally deaf in the process. Which cost you 150 dollars more. With a one year warrenty.

    Atleast with the 7800 gtx 512, which cost a hundred dollars more right now you get a much better warrenty(In my opinion worth the hundred dollars), more power usange(arguable as tomshardware got lower energy usage), definitely more quieter and most importantly braggin rights to the fastest card on the market.

    I believe people should stop buying ati products this years, to let ati know that they can't pulled the crap they did on people this year. So like a cornered dog, Ati has to fight for their survival or perish.

    p.s Anandtech should mention in there videocards buyer guide, the presence of a 1 year warrenty from ati build cards. Especially at the lower price levels where performance is just as important as reliability and customer care.
    Reply
  • Wesley Fink - Thursday, November 17, 2005 - link

    I fully understand your angst regarding ATI Video solutions (or lack thereof) this year. However, I do believe the ATI chipsets for AMD to be excellent introductions this year. Availability of motherboards with ATI chipsets has been a problem, but that has not been because of availability. ATI chipsets have been readily available, but as a new AMD player it has taken time to convince manufacturers to build high-end boards with ATI chipsets. A south bridge without problems would also have been a huge help, but that is also changing as the ULi M1575 is finally shipping.

    Reply
  • gamara - Thursday, November 17, 2005 - link

    So was there a date for the x1800 Phantom Edition that would compete with the 7800GTX 512? I like the competition, as it makes the Nvidia board I buy in the future better as well, but I do have to agree this came off as ATI Fanboy. Was the IP the 7800GTX? Did ATI hold back the x1800xt until they had enough chips that would ramp fast enough to beat it?

    I checked NewEgg, ZipZoomFly and AllstarShop. The only one that had x1800xt's was Allstarshop which was selling them at 680 and 700. They had a 7800GTX 512 for 799. Go figure they are the only one with stock. At 'retail' price points, it looks like both are the XT and GTX are short stock. ATI's x1XXX release has been a bunch of smoke and mirrors on the consumer end while Nvidia has actually had stock on shelves. A friend bought a 7800GTX and loves having a card he can actually put in his system. It runs games pretty well too.

    Reply
  • 3DC - Thursday, November 17, 2005 - link

    It just seems ironic how after the 7800GTX 512Mb launches we see this ATI preview. ATI must of said, "Hey Anandtech, can you run this preview for us so it looks like we are still around". The fact you don't use any results but say it's faster then a 256Mb SLI setup and then casually say, "Oh the 512Mb version still beats it" seems to me you didn't want to make the article 100% pro ATI. Even though I assume ATI wanted to show your viewers what they have up their sleeve.

    Seems to be a shady article enticing people NOT to by a 7800GTX 256Mb. Instead of a preview I get a ATI PR driven advertisement on their up and up and up and up coming products that no one knows will see the light of day.
    Reply
  • allnighter - Thursday, November 17, 2005 - link

    First of all I'm not against ATi, any of their products or pre/reviews of those at AT at all. Quite the contrary. Second, as I clearly pointed out, I did not doubt Wesley's or any other AT editor's competence, again quite the contrary. I am using plain common sense and am doubting that any company will send a run-of-the-mill engineering sample for preview to Anandtech, without tweaking the board to achieve the best possible perf in order to present itself in the best of light. Not that there is anything wrong with that but my point is - remember the "Bullhead" (another ATi mobo mind you). I'm trying to dig out that piece but I think I don't have the time for it right now. Long story short it was to be an nForce killer and the ultimate enthusiast board yet today, when you can actually buy one, not even ATi considers it enthusiast level, more a value board if anything else.
    Again, I'm not doubting Wesley's competence to put together a quality review set-up or run a battery of quality tests but how can you really know that the board in your hands is not on steroids but simply a great design. Again, not so long ago there was an overclocking extravaganza thrown up by ATi, where iirc they were introing the x850 (someone correct me if I'm wrong please, might have been a different card, my memory isn't perfect) where they had a guy literally hand tuning bios'es on the spot for people yet "Bullhead" failed to yield earth shattering results.
    And since I'm being given a lesson in semantics - well sure every article is a "pr piece" in essence. However my perception of my fellow AT readers was always that majority of us are the actual computer enthusiast that pay attention to more things than just company names, so unless something has dramatically changed (the structure of AT readers or editor's opinions about those readers)I think statements of "...but just wait 'till such & such pulls out the ace out of their sleeve.." is a type of sensationalism I'm unwilling to accept from AT. We have Inquirer for that.
    Reply
  • Artuk - Thursday, November 17, 2005 - link

    I hope that the vendors will create a layout that allows at least one regular PCI slot to be used. With a pair of two slot cards in crossfire, I dont think I could get my x-fi into a board laid out like the reference design. The nforce sli and crossfire boards I have seen from this generation havent given much thought to paired two slot graphics cards.

    Artuk
    Reply
  • yacoub - Thursday, November 17, 2005 - link

    quote:

    We then ran all the same tests in single video mode, comparing a single X1800XT on the ATI RD480 to a single 7800GTX on the Asus A8N32-SLI. ... Once again the ATI X1800XT on the RD580 was the winner in every benchmark.


    Which chipset is it?
    Reply
  • Wesley Fink - Thursday, November 17, 2005 - link

    Corrected. Unfortunately, spellchecks don't catch a misplaced 4. The tested ATI chipset is the RD580. Reply
  • tajoh111 - Thursday, November 17, 2005 - link

    Its terrible how anandtech looked like they were paid almost by ATI to do this article. They took known facts and known rumours and molded them to that would best suit ATI. This was done in a almost fanboyish manner in this regard.

    They changed and modified price details, to best suit ati's interest. We all know that ATI 1800xt's are 600 dollars, but we also know that 7800gtx 256 for the most part beside the most expensive overclocked versions are 450 dollars not the 499 that anandtech suggested.

    Yes the prices of the gtx 512's are 700 dollars, but the suggested retail is 650. Note we get these 512 gtx cards for 640 USA in canada.

    So basically anandtech took the manufacture suggested prices and the street prices and painted an inaccurate and favourable picture for Ati.

    They also did this for the competition part. Ati also said that they released the cards to compete with the 256mg 7800 gtx, how is it supposed to be compared to this when it is 150 dollars more expensive than the competition, and is 5 months newer in the technology cycle. On the other hand the GTX 512 was released in week of each other, with a suggested retail price difference of 50 dollars. Not to mention warrenty.

    Nvidia also released this card to do battle with the 1800 xt, not the phantom 1800xt PE which is not availible. SO why is anandtech believeing ATI in this manner. Is it because ATI has made it clear... blah blah, we are going to release this PE product that not availible and we all know will be in lottery rare quantities.

    I don't believe any of this competition stuff that anandtech suggest as good for the industry when ATi's showing this year has been poor. They should be punished and forced like a dog to earn the publics trust in there company.

    Anything below the 1800 series is still unavailible, the 1800 xl is still more expensive then the Gt and arguably a worse performer, and the Current 1800 xt flagship product is slower than nvidias. THe worst crime I find still those is the 1 year warrenty offered from ati. I find this unforgivable. This makes any ati product a poor purchase. The consumer has a right to be treated with respect not just superior products.

    ATI should be gouged this year until they produce competitive products and restore their warrenty from 3 years or to match much on the nvidias card lifetime. If they are not punished and swayed from this inferiority, they will become an abomination of a company.
    Reply
  • nVestor - Thursday, November 17, 2005 - link

    Sadly, I agree with most of what you have mentioned. How can ATi/AnandTech begin to sell me on RD580/Crossfire X1800XT when I haven't been sold on Rx480/482/Crossfire X1800XT yet?

    Then to find this RD580/Crossfire X1800XT was compared to the 7800GTX 256MB SLi? Price points aside, though isn't a 512MB card suppose to be compared to a 512MB card?
    quote:

    Derek Wilson is our GPU guy and Wesley is our Chipset/Motherboard guy. The 7800 GTX 512MB just launched Monday. I can guarantee that Wes was well along in benchmarks (probably even done!) before Derek has numbers for the new NVIDIA card. Read the article closely: it states that the X1800XT/Crossfire beats 7800GTX/SLI in every test run. However, 7800GTX 512MB/SLI would probably come out on top still.

    If that's the case, I assume Rx480/482/Crossfire X1800XT result would probably be even lower than the RD580/Crossfire X1800XT when pitted against the 7800GTX 512MB/SLi?

    Lastly-
    quote:

    If you're an NVIDIA diehard, you probably won't care, but the ATI fans are probably glad to hear that there's a light at the end of the tunnel.

    That might be the case for ATi Fans, though I believe they don't take to kindly to deception/trickery either like rest of us.
    Reply
  • Wesley Fink - Thursday, November 17, 2005 - link

    You use MSRP's when it suits your argument and street prices when those suit your point. The MSRP of the X1800XT and 7800GTX are the same at $599 - check the 7800GTX launch reviews if you doubt that point. X1800XT have beens selling for a week and are selling for retail at $599. 7800GTX has been selling since late June and a search of our Price Engine shows a price range of $449 to $599 selling price for the 7800GTX, with a check of etailers showing most cards around $499. The 7800GTX 512 has a MSRP of $649 but is selling for $699 at every e-tailer in our Price Engine.

    From our June 22nd 7800GTX launch review, p.1 "The GeForce 7800 GTX will cost a solid $600. Of course, we do expect retailers to charge a premium for the early adopters. Prices we are seeing at launch are on the order of $650."

    The prices fpr today's new stuff, both the X1800XT and the 7800GTX 512, will likely drop over time just as the 7800GTX prices have dropped. Today the 7800GTX is clearly the best high-end value, particularly if you shop a little for the $450 to $460 cards. We can only speculate about tomorrow.

    It is impossible to debate with a fan - or most nVidia or ATI PR departments.
    Reply
  • Powermoloch - Wednesday, November 16, 2005 - link

    I don't see why people start bashing ATi after reading this article. I find it ironic that people are willing to spend $200 more on a dual card setup on Nvidia (2x512 7800GTX) while it is likely that the 2 x X1800XT "only" shows better performance according to AT. My belief that competition is healthy, this gives more variety of products for the end-user of all kinds to choose from. And this kind of competition will likely spark new technology, drive down prices (maybe rise up too), and also people can claim themselves as ATi or Nvidia and still be happy for what they get (maybe).

    Other than that, this is good news for the PC enthusiasts. Why have a fuss about it?
    Reply
  • Aquila76 - Wednesday, November 16, 2005 - link

    It may be a great performer, but that is the fugliest board layout I have EVER seen, and the color scheme rivals only the McDonald's-themed Jetway. If I had a windowed case, I'd put up curtains to hide that thing. Reply
  • 3DC - Wednesday, November 16, 2005 - link

    Why didn't you compare it to a 512MB 7800GTX setup? Is it because ATI told you not too? Another thing you mention price point comparison. Well it's actually cheaper to compare it to a 512Mb 7800GTX SLI setup then to a 256Mb 7800GTX SLI setup.

    2 512MB 7800GTX = $1400.00
    2 512MB X1800XT = $1200.00
    2 256MB 7800GTX = $900.00

    Plus if you tack on the price of the RD580 motherboard and then you are putting the Crossfire setup more and more comparable to the 512MB 7800GTX SLI system. Considering everyone and their mothers own a SLI nForce board for their AMD CPU.

    It seems ATI didn't want you to use the 512Mb cards, because according to them it's not the card they are going after. Plus to tack on you saying ATI beats NVIDIA in all of the benchmarks is a little premature don't ya think?

    This preview sounded more like a ATI PR Announcement...
    Reply
  • JarredWalton - Wednesday, November 16, 2005 - link

    Derek Wilson is our GPU guy and Wesley is our Chipset/Motherboard guy. The 7800 GTX 512MB just launched Monday. I can guarantee that Wes was well along in benchmarks (probably even done!) before Derek has numbers for the new NVIDIA card. Read the article closely: it states that the X1800XT/Crossfire beats 7800GTX/SLI in every test run. However, 7800GTX 512MB/SLI would probably come out on top still.

    Looking at prices of the X1800XL - they're selling below MSRP and are only slightly more expensive than the 7800GT - we can guess that X1800XT prices will drop over the next month or two. The price of the new NVIDIA 512MB cards will also drop, of course, but they will likely continue to cost ~$100 more than X1800XT.

    As for this being a PR piece, *every* article written is essentially PR. There's no such thing as a bad review from the marketing standpoint - many people won't read the reviews, but they'll still see the company names! However, that doesn't mean we're intentionally playing favorites. ATI's X1800XT is a fast card, and in Crossfire it should be very competitive with 7800GTX. If you're an NVIDIA diehard, you probably won't care, but the ATI fans are probably glad to hear that there's a light at the end of the tunnel.
    Reply
  • 3DC - Wednesday, November 16, 2005 - link

    I think the article should be a little clearer in differentiating between the 7800 GTX 256Mb and the 512Mb card. Just a little FYI, I think it's time to add the 256Mb moniker to the end of the 7800 GTX so we all know which card you are talking about. Reply
  • JarredWalton - Wednesday, November 16, 2005 - link

    It would have been a heck of a lot easier to differentiate the cards if NVIDIA had gone and named the 512MB card the "Ultra" like everyone was expecting. *Grumble* ;) Reply
  • shabby - Wednesday, November 16, 2005 - link

    Where is this $499 x1800xt you speak of, is this the 256meg card by any chance?
    If it is, then i dont see anyone buying it since for 50 bucks more *cough* you can get the 512meg one.
    Reply
  • Wesley Fink - Wednesday, November 16, 2005 - link

    No one said there was a $499 X1800XY yet, as in the first wave the past week everyone was selling at $599 suggested retail price. The MSRP of the nVidia 7800GTX is also $599, but it is selling at most places now for $499 - even less if you shop. My point was the price of the X1800XT will likely drop once the retail pipelines are filled - just as the 7800GTX prices have dropped the longer they are on the market. Reply
  • shabby - Wednesday, November 16, 2005 - link

    My bad, i read that as the $499 x1800xt.
    Anyway while ati can believe the cheaper gtx is its competitor, its msrp doesnt suggest that unless they lower it.
    Does ati also believe that the x1600xt is a competitor for the 6800gs? Same price right, but its half a slow.
    Reply
  • fxrron - Wednesday, November 16, 2005 - link

    I couldn't agree more with allnighter. Companies tweak their product for weeks and send them to be reviewed. The reviews are worthless and a waste of time to read. I remember Falcon Northwest sent Tom's Hardware Guide a system to review. The 7800 GTX was overclocked alot and it would not even run the benchmarks. You can't order the same system so what good was the review in the first place. Spend your time reviewing retail products in the future.

    Ron
    Reply
  • Wesley Fink - Wednesday, November 16, 2005 - link

    This was a PREVIEW, not a review, and I am still looking for the benchmarks you so roundly criticize - since there are no benchmarks in the preview. I have described relative performance that I personally found with my components on the ATI Manta board.

    I can't speak of how other review sites test, but I can tell I used known processors, memory, hard drives, and 7800GTX cards in my preview tests. I also did all the setup myself to make sure everything was as fair as I could make it. I also ran ALL the benchmarks myself - side-by-side - with the nVidia and ATI boards and video cards. This was not a canned set of numbers, or a canned demo, these are results I personally found in 2 days of testing.

    Last, the DFI Retail is performing exactly as I found in my review in the retail samples. I found 305 max, lower than the Reference Crossfire - and retail buyers are finding 295 to 310 max.

    I have suggested that any manufacturer who wants to duplicate ATI Reference results should copy the Reference Board, and other review sites have also said the same thing. Eventually someone will actually copy an excellent ATI Reference Design, and when they do buyers will do even better in performance than I have achieved in the AT reviews. The ATI Reference boards are not tweaked to oblivion - it's just the designs are that good.
    Reply
  • DigitalFreak - Wednesday, November 16, 2005 - link

    First - ATI is not the only chipset maker with HD Audio support for AMD. Nvidia has this as well with the 410/430 southbridges.

    Second - "However, ATI clearly believes the competitor for X1800XT is the $499 7800GTX and not the $700 7800GTX 512MB."
    Boy, does ATI need to get a clue. X1800XT cards are currently going for $599, while the 7800GTX boards are in the $450 range. Why would I want to spend $149 more for a card that performs slightly better.
    Reply
  • Wesley Fink - Wednesday, November 16, 2005 - link

    When 7800GTX launched they were $600 or more, but they have dropped to around $499 at most e-tailers and you can find them even cheaper if you shop carefully. The X1800XT shipped first wave last week and instantly sold out. Prices will drop as soon as the supply line is filled - just like the 7800GTX. Reply
  • Wesley Fink - Wednesday, November 16, 2005 - link

    HD Azalia audio is just an option on the high-end versions of the nVidia integrated chipset, which have just started shipping. You also have to buy a high-end integrated video micro ATX board to get an nVidia HD audio solution, as this option is not available on any nForce4, SLI, or SLI Dual x16 board. Reply
  • haelduksf - Wednesday, November 16, 2005 - link

    Thanks guys, way to tease me!

    One question though; is there a big difference between x8 and x16 Crossfire? Can an RD480/482 owner expect similar Crossfire performance to an RD580?
    Reply
  • allnighter - Wednesday, November 16, 2005 - link

    I believe I brought this up several times before and I'll say it again - I am personally bothered with AT's previews of reference boards. Why? Well simply because as far back as I can think it's always the same $hit. A hand tuned, tweaked to hell mobo pitted against the competing products, usually months before they go to retail and are actually available. That makes AT preview a pr piece that pretty much serves as a sales stopper against the competition regardless of which manufacturer is being reviewed. It's simply ridiculous to watch how those previewed boards always outshine the competition and show performance that barely translates into something we'll be able to experience, yet it's heralded as the best thing since sliced bread.
    Although I must give props to Wesley for not including any comparison charts in today's preview 'cause that would really tick me off.
    What ever happened to a good old technology preview? What ever happened to the good old "product taken out of the retail box" review?
    I'm not doubting AT's (in this case Wesley's) credibility or competence but the very fact that the reference board is sent specifically for AT preview makes me doubt the results. Why? Well simply because we've seen that exact scenario numerous times. These boards should be clearly marked as "AT preview edition" rather than anything else.
    So to end this little bitch session let me just say that I'll simply stop reading mobo previews at AT. Unless it clearly states it's a new mobo tech preview or has a brand and product name/code in the title of it - I'm not interested. Thank you.
    Reply
  • allnighter - Wednesday, November 16, 2005 - link

    I believe I brought this up several times before and I'll say it again - I am personally bothered with AT's previews of reference boards. Why? Well simply because as far back as I can think it's always the same $hit. A hand tuned, tweaked to hell mobo pitted against the competing products, usually months before they go to retail and are actually available. That makes AT preview a pr piece that pretty much serves as a sales stopper against the competition regardless of which manufacturer is being reviewed. It's simply ridiculous to watch how those previewed boards always outshine the competition and show performance that barely translates into something we'll be able to experience, yet it's heralded as the best thing since sliced bread.
    Although I must give props to Wesley for not including any comparison charts in today's preview 'cause that would really tick me off.
    What ever happened to a good old technology preview? What ever happened to the good old "product taken out of the retail box" review?
    I'm not doubting AT's (in this case Wesley's) credibility or competence but the very fact that the reference board is sent specifically for AT preview makes me doubt the results. Why? Well simply because we've seen that exact scenario numerous times. These boards should be clearly marked as "AT preview edition" rather than anything else.
    So to end this little bitch session let me just say that I'll simply stop reading mobo previews at AT. Unless it clearly states it's a new mobo tech preview or has a brand and product name/code in the title of it - I'm not interested. Thank you.
    Reply
  • haelduksf - Wednesday, November 16, 2005 - link

    I don't get it.

    AT's preview of the Crossfire referance board was right on- performance was matched almost exactly by the DFI CF-DR. I personally would rather have the review as soon as possible, until waiting for the product to ship x units to y stores before even looking at it.

    Reply
  • pyrosity - Wednesday, November 16, 2005 - link

    It's good to hear that the R580, at least, is still on track. It's taken ages, but I'm glad that AT got the whole R520 delay thing cleared up. It would be interesting to find out which third party screwed ATI up.

    Personally, I'd be more interested in reading/hearing about the R530, as it should fit into my price range better than the supposed ubercard that R580 will likely be. Still good to get an update on that, though.

    On the motherboard side of things, it's nice to read that the competition is stepping up at last.
    Reply
  • MDme - Wednesday, November 16, 2005 - link

    maybe it was MS that screwed things up for ATI since ATI must have used a lot of R&D for the R500 on the 360. remember that the PS3 is only using a 7800GTX at 90nm (presumably with a higher clock) ;p

    i'm glad though that the r580 is "on time" because competition is good.

    Reply
  • michal1980 - Wednesday, November 16, 2005 - link

    nvidia isn't the king of anything. but this is the pc world, things change and they change fast. crossifre is barely working on last years gpus, and thats just now, a year after nvidia.

    geez u know if i keep waiting for the next round, then i'll have a 10ghz 8 core cpu, with a multi-core gpu, and a multi-core ppu, with a terabyte of ram, and hundreds of tb's of storage...

    all i have to do is wait.
    and wait.
    and wait.
    and wati
    and ati = wait for us.
    don't wait for a company play with the best now, then when the best changes buy that.
    Reply
  • WaltC - Wednesday, November 16, 2005 - link

    I've been having a ball since January of this year when I bought an AGP x800 xt. Nothing for me to be disappointed about.

    I think some of the comments in this thread are funny...;) I mean, nV sends out some 7800GTX 512 reference cards to review sites--cards that, when available, will cost ~$800, and consist of little more than overvolted, overclocked 7x gpus and ram, requiring a gigantic heatsink--and some people complain that ATi sends out reference boards of its upcoming motherboards to those same websites who preview them.

    Personally, I'm glad to see ATi getting so aggressive in the AMD, enthusiast's mboard markets, and could care less that they don't shove and push their products to market before they are ready. Rome wasn't built in a day, etc.

    I can well understand the angst of people who rushed to market to buy the expensive nV products on the strength of the wrong-headed idea that ATi wasn't interested in competing within this market. If I'd been rash and made the same mistake I'd be pissed, too--but I guess I'd be upset more with myself than with anybody else.

    There's just no substitute for patience, is there? It will be no trouble at all for me to wait until next year to buy a few new things. In the meantime I'll continue to enjoy the more-than-adequate gaming support the x800 xt has given me all year. I have zero complaints with it thus far. In fact, it may well be that I'm not even in a hurry next year to replace my current config.
    Reply
  • bob661 - Wednesday, November 16, 2005 - link

    quote:

    some people complain that ATi sends out reference boards
    People complain about ATI "releasing" products with no actual product to buy. Nvidia's so-called "reference" board can be bought in stores for $749 on the day they launched it. Quite a bit of difference there bud.
    Reply
  • quasarsky - Thursday, November 17, 2005 - link

    well no difference really.

    i can't afford that lol.

    but my recent computer upgrading I WILL tell you what i can afford :) and bought :-D

    $610 =

    2 250 gig seagate sata 7200.8 harddrives $165
    2x 1 gig of patriot red heatspreader ram 2.5-3-3-8 $175
    ati all in wonder x800xt $275 (255 after rebate :-D)

    and someone bought the 7800gtx 512 mb for $749 (a pun i know cause i spent $610 lol), and then lost their job, and couldn't pay their bills and their world fell apart LOL.

    :0D

    Reply
  • poohbear - Wednesday, November 16, 2005 - link

    well said mate, i love competition and really all this 7800 gtx 512mb doesnt do it for me, give me a card in the same performance group as a 6800GS/7800GS cause that's the stuff me and most ppl can afford. Reply
  • michal1980 - Wednesday, November 16, 2005 - link

    ati has been late for 2 years now. the 6800gt vs the 8xx series, the 6800 series out first.
    with the 7800 series they got killed.

    the promised crossfire last year... were only starting to see it work.. on boards that cost 2x that of nivdia entry level sli (they said theres would be cheaper) the said the x18xx series would be out months ago... well about 6 months later and ur finally starting to see the 1800xt..

    there crossifre boards are still running with ethier the amputated southbridge, or a uli southbridge.

    ati has lately given alot of promises, but not alot to play with.

    oh and the big news that the 1800xt in cross fire can beat the 7800gtx(256) in crossfire. NO DUH. i mean it beats the 7800gtx in a single card test, so why would 2 magically be slower.


    plus why are they so dumb. isn't there next grahpics card core the 580? now there next motherboard is a 580? WOW talk about confusion... or maybe they've lost there minds and the whole time we thought the 580 was the next gen card, but in fact its just another motherboards.

    WOW ati... i owned your stuff, but right now your on the suckage path

    a bird in the hand is worth two in the bush.

    i can play with 7800gtx sli, or gtx512 sli. i can play with a 32lane motherboard (a8n32)...

    i can only dream of ati xfire
    Reply
  • MDme - Wednesday, November 16, 2005 - link

    I think the article was meant to show that ATI still has a fighting chance considering that the X1800XT exceeds the 7800GTX in ALL benchmarks (including nVidia strongholds like doom3 and quake4). Obviously it will also win in the SLI/CF tests. I think this is really quite some news in the ultra-highend segment where most enthusiasts play.

    It also gives us the question of will the X1800XT PE beat the 7800GTX 512, head to head.

    Now, if only ATI can actually get the products to the market before nVidia comes up with something faster.

    Competition is good. If not for competition, we will still be typing on our AMD K6-III 700MHz with 512MB SDRAM and a GF2 with 64 mb VRAM. :)
    Reply
  • Megatomic - Wednesday, November 16, 2005 - link

    Wesley, do you know if ATI is planning to release an analogue to the NF4 Ultra, i.e. a high performance motherboard with only one slot for PCI-e graphics cards? Reply
  • Wesley Fink - Wednesday, November 16, 2005 - link

    The Sapphire "Grouper" we reviewed is on sale in Europe, buit it never made it to the US. It is also very expensive - more expensive than the Asus Crossfire whose review will post early next week. We are told there will likley be a couple of more "Grouper" boards, but we haven't seen them yet. MSI will release a full range of Crossfire chipset boards from full blown to basic - but we do not know yet which boards will reach the US and European markets. Reply
  • Megatomic - Thursday, November 17, 2005 - link

    Well, I'd dearly love to see a highend RS580 mobo. I might even go for an RS480 if it ever gets paired with SB600. Reply
  • tuteja1986 - Wednesday, November 16, 2005 - link

    I think ATI will take lead next year... This year was totally bad for them! just like NVIDIA had a bad year with Geforce 5800U.. Anyways ATI is good position for the future and we should see some great competition.
    Reply
  • Jedi2155 - Wednesday, November 16, 2005 - link

    If it can beat the 7800 GTX in all tests then it certainly peaks my interest in the duo. Although if this is what they can do with their *failed* (my opinion) R520...just imagine the R580 :O. Reply
  • Cygni - Wednesday, November 16, 2005 - link

    ATI just seems a little late to the party with each of their releases, and then once finally officially launched, even later to actually get to market.

    I wish em the best, but i dont even think the (possible) overclocking abilities and x16 Crossfire option will truly get people up to buy the board unless it dips into the $100 range that the SLI boards are now sitting in.
    Reply
  • n7 - Wednesday, November 16, 2005 - link

    Hawt!

    The more competition, the better.

    Also, i really do think that it's only a matter of time before the ATi chipset is superior to nVidia's offerings.

    Now we just have to wait, something no one likes to do...
    Reply
  • Calin - Wednesday, November 16, 2005 - link

    because the nVidia will develop new things for themselves. nVidia won't stay idle when ATI chipsets (graphic or otherwise) eat at their performance advantage Reply
  • Calin - Wednesday, November 16, 2005 - link

    Even if the CrossFire boards will be more expensive than the SLI boards, there could be enough reasons to buy one. After all, at $100 or $150, the mainboard has a small share of the total price of a new computer or total upgrade (mainboard, processor and video card). With the very good performance now ATI shows with their newest graphic cards, people could choose a ATI graphic card for some or other gaming reasons, and prefer a ATI board.
    I really hope to have more choice in the market, as this will drive down prices at all levels.
    Reply
  • VERTIGGO - Wednesday, November 16, 2005 - link

    However, the price will drop, and we are talking about extreme high end equipment, which doesn't ultimately boil down to $50 advantages.

    Considering this generation with respect to the last, however, the most important advances are the bold moves into OpenGL territory, and remembering how the last generation panned out, ATi wound up with the best single cards in the end. This time around, I'm willing to wait and see if they can pull it off in the dual card arena.
    Reply

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