XFX ATI 4000 Series Round Up
Published: 14th April 2009 | Source: XFX | Price: £130 - £330 |
Packaging & Appearance
Once again, the front of the box is dominated with the mask from Friday the13th fame. This time however, the box is twice the size of the XFX 4850 and 4870XXX cards we looked at earlier. I still think the XFX emblem looks out of place, being green and while I appreciate it's just a company logo a change of colour to red would be more apt for their ATI branding. Flipping the box over, we see that XFX are keen to promote their 5-star support service should you take the time to register the product.
Removing the outer sleeve, we once again come to a plain black box containing both the accessories and the graphics card. The accessory list is once again complete with everything you could want from GPU connectivity. A DVI/VGA adapter, HDMI adapter, TV out and PCIe 6-pin to dual Molex adapter along with a driver CD and user guides.
XFX, while traditionally hailing from the green side have missed a trick by using the same green cardboard padding used in their Nvidia range. Again, I would prefer to have seen red instead of lime green which could well upset some avid ATI fan boys as no self respecting fan boy would have green anywhere, let alone on the packaging of their beloved ATI GPU's. Nevertheless, XFX have seen fit to use this padding from the Nvidia parts bin. Thankfully, the card is this time held securely in place by sponge ensuring the card reaches the end user in perfect condition.
The card yet again uses the standard designed cooler but instead of the translucent red we have a stylish black affair which only serves to add to the domineering appearance of the card. A matching black backplate is also used to prevent the card from bowing under the heavy coolers weight with the two chrome GPU backplates hinting of the dual GPU power hidden inside.
The cooler fan is effective in operation but again, fairly loud when placed under load. Potential buyers should note that this card requires an 8-pin PCIe cable as well as a 6 Pin PCIe cable to operate as designed and with no 8 pin adapter included it is therefore imperative that your PSU supports this feature.
The rear of the card this time has plain black DVI ports and a single TV-output . HD compatibility is afforded via the supplied HDMI adapter and the 7.1 surround capability of the card can hopefully drown out the noise of the fan. Be aware though that this card is not exactly the ideal choice for a media centre despite it's connectivity. It's a monolith of a card and consideration should be given to this fact as it will not fit in a lot of cases so please check before buying.
The 4870x2 has been the top performing card for so long now with only the GTX295 surpassing it and even then by a small margin. It is still the flagship card from ATI and coupled with XFX packaging and support it, priced below the GTX295 it is still proving very popular with enthusiasts who are looking for a card that can perform at the highest level. Can it prove best bang per buck though, considering how well the 4870 performs it certainly has it's work cut out.
Let's see if the pre-overclocked cards have anything left to offer in terms of speed as I try to overclock them even further with our test setup...