Palit Radeon HD 4870 Sonic Dual Edition - Overclocked Goodness


Turbo-charged for Greater Performance

Turbo-charged for Greater Performance

As soon as we received our first overclocked Radeon HD 4870, the recently reviewed PowerColor PCS+ HD 4870 1GB Radeon, we knew that it was always going to be a matter of time before more overclocked variants started popping up. Fresh in our labs then is the Palit Radeon HD 4870 Sonic Dual Edition (quite a mouthful, we know). Boasting a cooler that can only be described as monstrous, the Palit Radeon HD 4870 Sonic Dual Edition claims, like such cards usually do, to offer improved performance and cooler, quieter operation.

Now Palit is not trying to sound flashy with the card's long name. It does mean something, so allow us to explain. "Sonic" indicates that this particular card belongs to Palit's rather popular series of overclocked cards, while "Dual Edition", on the other hand, refers to the card's dual bios, which allows it to either boot in "Sonic" or "Turbo" mode (more on this Dual Bios later).

So before we get into details about this card, let us first take a look at how the card stacks up against other comparable cards.

Palit Radeon HD 4870 Sonic Dual Edition and comparable competitive cards
Model Palit Radeon HD 4870 Sonic Dual Edition 512MB Radeon HD 4870 512MB Radeon HD 4850 512MB NVIDIA GTX 280 1GB NVIDIA GTX 260 896MB
Core Code RV700 RV770 RV770 GT200 GT200
Transistor Count 956 million 956 million 956 million 1400 million 1400 million
Manufacturing Process 55nm 55nm 55nm 65nm 65nm
Core Clock 750/775 MHz 750MHz 625MHz 602MHz 576MHz
Stream Processors 160 Processors (800 Stream processing units) 160 Processors (800 Stream processing units) 160 Processors (800 Stream processing units) 240 Stream Processors 192 Stream Processors
Stream Processor Clock 750/775MHz 750MHz 625MHz 1296MHz 1242MHz
Texture Mapping Units (TMU) or Texture Filtering (TF) units 40 40 40 80 64
Raster Operator units (ROP) 16 16 16 32 28
Memory Clock 3800/4000 MHz GDDR5 3600MHz GDDR5 2000MHz GDDR3 2214MHz GDDR3 1998MHz GDDR3
DDR Memory Bus Width 256-bit 256-bit 256-bit 512-bit 448-bit
Memory Bandwidth 121.6/128 GB/s 115.2GB/s 64GB/s 141.7GB/s 111.9GB/s
PCI Express Interface PCIe ver 2.0 x16 PCIe ver 2.0 x16 PCIe ver 2.0 x16 PCIe ver 2.0 x16 PCIe ver 2.0 x16
Molex Power Connectors 2 x 6-pin 2 x 6-pin 6-pin 6-pin, 8-pin 2 x 6-pin
Multi GPU Technology CrossFireX CrossFireX CrossFireX SLI SLI
DVI Output Support 2 x Dual-Link, 1 x DisplayPort 2 x Dual-Link 2 x Dual-Link 2 x Dual-Link 2 x Dual-Link
HDCP Output Support Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes
Street Price US$269 US$299 US$199 US$499 US$299