Exactly one week ago today, AMD unleashed the ultra powerful, DirectX 11-ready ATI Radeon HD 5870 upon the PC gaming world and staked a claim as the undisputed 3D performance leader, well, per GPU anyway. Having evaluated the features, performance, and image quality of AMD's latest and greatest flagship we were left thoroughly impressed, not only with the new Radeon's killer performance, but its extensive feature set, excellent image quality, power consumption, and competitive price.
In our coverage of the official launch of the Radeon HD 5870, we also revealed AMD's plan to release a more affordable, pared-down version of the card, with a shorter PCB, lower core and memory frequencies, and sans a few stream processors and texture units, dubbed the Radeon HD 5850. Unfortunately, cards did not arrive in time to be tested alongside the 5870. The Radeon HD 5850 did arrive in the lab a few days later, however, and we jumped right on the testing.
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