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Ati 5850...

looper

Golden Member
Oct 22, 1999
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If you were trying to get an ATI 5850 today, which specific vendor's card would you get?
 

RomanMtz

Golden Member
Nov 12, 2004
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Are there certain vendors that overclock better than others? (Ability to voltage tweak, etc...)
 

apoppin

Lifer
Mar 9, 2000
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alienbabeltech.com
Are there certain vendors that overclock better than others? (Ability to voltage tweak, etc...)
Yes. i am unsure about HD 5850 but HD5870 non-reference designs do not always allow voltage tweaks. Some of them are at stock clocks and OC well; others are vendor-set at slight OCs and they do not OC much further

*Generally* the HD 5000 series is a very mature process and they usually overclock; however, it often comes down to your specific card - some o/c well; some don't - even within the same brand and model number.
 

SlowSpyder

Lifer
Jan 12, 2005
17,305
998
126
Are there certain vendors that overclock better than others? (Ability to voltage tweak, etc...)
The Sapphire VaporX stuff appears to use a non-reference design. I wouldn't count on being able to adjust the voltage.
 

VisceralM

Member
Feb 1, 2005
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As long as it's a reference card, it doesn't matter, get the one on sale. Ref cards are becoming harder to find though and prices on all 5850's have gone up since the fermi turd hit the market.

A non ref card wont be able to do a soft volt mod, limiting your overclock. The exception being MSI cards, which all allow software overvolting.

TLDR: Buy the cheapest reference 5850 card you can find.
 

bunnyfubbles

Lifer
Sep 3, 2001
12,248
3
0
If it is a non reference design, count on not being able to change voltage unless the product is specifically advertised as capable.

The MSI Twin Frozr II is one of the only non reference designs I know of that supports overvolting, not surprising considering it is MSI that produces the overvolting (and overclocking) app that is far and away the most popular tool for doing just that (MSI Afterburner).

Granted, I've even heard unflattering things about MSI's 5850 Twin Frozr II, so I'd actually be more inclined to stick with a reference design and upgrade the cooling on my own if I was really concerned about overclocking.

Any of the reference designed cards should be just about identical to the point where you can flash them with whatever reference bios you desire (such as one with unlocked clock rate caps) as well as have overvolting support right out of the box with a tool such as MSI Afterburner.
 

MagickMan

Diamond Member
Aug 11, 2008
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*Generally* the HD 5000 series is a very mature process and they usually overclock; however, it often comes down to your specific card - some o/c well; some don't - even within the same brand and model number.
A friend has an ASUS 5850 reference card, same as mine, his does 1000@1.35v while mine is 1020@1.25. If he wants to bring the voltages down to where I am he has to drop his core down to 950. He isn't very happy with that, but it's pure luck of the draw.
 

MarcVenice

Moderator Emeritus <br>
Apr 2, 2007
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Lot of misinformation in this thread. Even though most HD 5850's are reference design (new ones are just popping up) they don't have the same bios!!!

Some vendors don't let you OC worth shit (I have a non reference Gigabyte, that I can OC from 765MHz to 775MHz), but there's also vendors that allow you to overclock to 1000MHz or even 1500MHz. I'm sure Asus allows 1000MHz or even higher, and MSI's bios is pretty much unlocked.

What you can do though, is flash a reference HD 5850 with MSI's bios (which is obtainable on their website) and then you can also use their Afterburner software, which I have to admit, has been one of the best/easiest oc-ing tools I've seen.

Asus' voltage tweak software works, but I've found it to be 'flakier' and much more annoying to work with.
 

MagickMan

Diamond Member
Aug 11, 2008
7,537
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Lot of misinformation in this thread. Even though most HD 5850's are reference design (new ones are just popping up) they don't have the same bios!!!
You can have any BIOS you want, it's easy. However, just because you can doesn't mean you should. I'm already seeing people who have bricked their cards.
 
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Apocalypse23

Golden Member
Jul 14, 2003
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Get an Asus or MSI 58xx/59xx, they both support voltage software and use similar bioses. The Asus uses their own software called Voltage Tweak, MSI uses Afterburner. Both also offer 3 year warranty.
 

bunnyfubbles

Lifer
Sep 3, 2001
12,248
3
0
Get an Asus or MSI 58xx/59xx, they both support voltage software and use similar bioses. The Asus uses their own software called Voltage Tweak, MSI uses Afterburner. Both also offer 3 year warranty.
Any reference design card can use Afterburner for overclocking and overvolting. ASUS's Voltage Tweak software is garbage, I opt to use MSI Afterburner with my ASUS card and highly recommend it.

The primary advantage to the ASUS or MSI reference cards is that they'll come what is essentially an unlocked BIOS right out of the box, allowing for 1GHz+ core overclocks. Other brand reference cards might have a very restrictive limit, although (as long it is a reference design) those cards can always be flashed with an ASUS or MSI BIOS.
 

Hauk

Platinum Member
Nov 22, 2001
2,808
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As others have said, the reference design is a solid offering. Good luck finding one though.

If you're stuck grabbing a non-reference board, do your homework. Board partners went all over the place with redesigns. While the Gigabyte looks to be solid, current bios has one speed, full 3D. It needs a bios update to include 2D clocks. Some are saying the nice looking MSI Twin board won't voltage tweak despite being advertised as such. In short, do your homework!

I like the following two designs. While both draw more power than reference designs, they both offer solid board components, cool and quiet operation, and overclock well without the need for voltage tweaks.

The Asus board features a very nice power array for a card in this price range. It supports software voltage tweaking, while the Powercolor does not. The Powercolor does overclock quite nicely with stock voltage however.

Asus:
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produc...-375-_-Product

http://www.techpowerup.com/reviews/ASUS/EAH_5850_TOP_DirectCu/1.html


Powercolor:
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produc...-351-_-Product

http://www.techpowerup.com/reviews/Powercolor/HD_5850_PCS_Plus/
 

looper

Golden Member
Oct 22, 1999
1,654
10
81
Great responses here, folks... Think I'll get the Asus or MSI.

Oh, BTW, how much faster is the ATI 5850 compared to the EVGA nVidia GTX280 that I have now? And does anyone know the link to that super chart that shows the performance of all current video cards?
 
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Termie

Diamond Member
Aug 17, 2005
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www.techbuyersguru.com
Lot of misinformation in this thread. Even though most HD 5850's are reference design (new ones are just popping up) they don't have the same bios!!!

Some vendors don't let you OC worth shit (I have a non reference Gigabyte, that I can OC from 765MHz to 775MHz), but there's also vendors that allow you to overclock to 1000MHz or even 1500MHz. I'm sure Asus allows 1000MHz or even higher, and MSI's bios is pretty much unlocked.
That's not entirely true, actually. The 775Mhz limit is common to many cards because it is the limit of ATI's Catalyst overclocking tool. But you can run the separate AMD GPU Tool to get around this limit on any card. That's how I run my XFX at 850/1200.

http://www.techpowerup.com/downloads/536/AMD_GPU_Clock_Tool_v0.7.html
 

MarcVenice

Moderator Emeritus <br>
Apr 2, 2007
5,664
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Great responses here, folks... Think I'll get the Asus or MSI.

Oh, BTW, how much faster is the ATI 5850 compared to the EVGA nVidia GTX280 that I have now? And does anyone know the link to that super chart that shows the performance of all current video cards?
Eh, it depends on the benchmark. I'd almost say my own benchmarks with a GTX 285 are borked, but it looks like the GTX 285 sometimes equals a HD 5850, and sometimes the HD 5850 is like 20% faster? Compared to a GTX 280 it should be more like 25-30%?
 

looper

Golden Member
Oct 22, 1999
1,654
10
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Apoppin...you asked...
"Are you going to replace your GTX 280?"

Might sell it/might keep it...probably sell...
 

apoppin

Lifer
Mar 9, 2000
34,890
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alienbabeltech.com
Apoppin...you asked...
"Are you going to replace your GTX 280?"

Might sell it/might keep it...probably sell...
i have one also; GTX 280 is a nice card if aging a bit with only DX10. Did you overclock it? - and do you plan to overclock your 5850?

i am not so sure the performance differences are going to be night and day between stock 5850 and 280; HD 5870 is a solid upgrade over the DX10 card as i have been benching my GTX 280 against my HD 5870 and GTX 480, and i would definitely recommend either of those upgrades.

i just have no experience with HD 5850; how much slower is it than HD 5870?
 
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Anubis

No Lifer
Aug 31, 2001
78,716
414
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i have one also; GTX 280 is a nice card if aging a bit with only DX10. Did you overclock it? - and do you plan to overclock your 5850?

i am not so sure the performance differences are going to be night and day between stock 5850 and 280; HD 5870 is a solid upgrade over the DX10 card as i have been benching my GTX 280 against my HD 5870 and GTX 480, and i would definitely recommend either of those upgrades.

i just have no experience with HD 5850; how much slower is it than HD 5870?
the chart in here (yes old article) shows the stock differences between the 5870 and the 5850. pretty much every review ive seen has the 5850 bettering the GTX 280/285 on everything

http://www.anandtech.com/show/2848
 

apoppin

Lifer
Mar 9, 2000
34,890
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Yes. i know HD 5850 is faster. And the new 10.3a drivers got at least +10&#37; more improvement over those old articles ..
.. So what is the consensus *now* ? Stock HD 5850 is 25% faster than stock GTX 280?
- 30% faster? More?

And it would probably matter if the OP came from an overclocked GTX 280. As i said, i have plenty of experience with HD 5870 vs. GTX 280 (5870 is a *solid* upgrade) but none with HD 5850 :p
 
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