It is no secret that ATI's Radeon 4000 series graphics cards have hurt NVIDIA. While NVIDIA concentrates on the high-end, ATI is slowly chipping away at NVIDIA's share in other market segments. According to a report by Jon Peddie Research , ATI's market share has increased four percent in the past two quarters.
This is largely due to the great performance/cost ratio of the ATI cards. Remember the release of the Radeon 4800 series almost a year back? Those cards represented tremendous value for money, forcing NVIDIA to quickly slash prices of their equally new cards in an attempt to better position themselves in the market.
Since then, ATI has expanded the range by offering stripped down versions of the Radeon HD 4800 series as mainstream cards, while NVIDIA seemed content to focus their efforts on creating the fastest single GPU regardless of the cost, while rebranding their older GPUs and passing them off as new mainstream offerings. While it is undeniable that the GeForce GTX 285 was the single most powerful GPU for a while, ATI was not to be outdone and eventually released the Radeon HD 4890.
For all intents and purposes, the Radeon HD 4890 was really a "facelift" of the older HD 4870. It featured higher clock speeds thanks to a retimed chip, new power distribution system, and decoupled capacitors. But perhaps most notably, it was the first GPU to hit clock speeds of 1GHz. Naturally, this garnered the Radeon HD 4890 much attention.
Today, we take a look at the ASUS EAH4890 Formula. The card boasts higher clock speeds than stock versions and its cooler is said to have been inspired by Formula 1 cars. Does it lives up to the high expectations?