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Sapphire Radeon HD 4890 ATOMIC: ramping up to 1,000MHz core

by Tarinder Sandhu on 29 April 2009, 16:42

Tags: Sapphire Radeon HD 4890 ATOMIC 1,024MB, AMD (NYSE:AMD), Sapphire, ATi Technologies (NYSE:AMD)

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1,000MHz core

Vapor-X technology is Sapphire's in-house-designed cooling concept that's been demonstrated to perform better than the reference heatsink.

Sapphire has three iterations of custom card-cooling, encompassing the Vapor-X (non-overclocked), Toxic (pre-overclocked), and Atomic (crème de la crème, pre-overclocked). The Atomic usually ships with the swanky cooler and bundle - aluminium case, anyone? - and increases clock-speeds on all parameters.

Cranked up to 1,000MHz core and an effective 4,200MHz memory, the core, in particular, is impressive. Compare this with the ~965MHz we usually achieve when overclocking regular HD 4890 boards.

The chunky heatpipe-based cooler is also quieter than the reference heatsink.

Hmm. What's this? Sapphire's cajoled the Radeon HD 4890 core to 1GHz but has used extra voltage to do so, it seems. We reckon this is the case because the PCB features both an eight-pin and six-pin PCIe power connector. The reference card uses dual six-pin connectors. Plug two six-pin connectors in and the system fails to POST.

But there's nothing untoward about the rear; it's the same as any other HD 4890's. Scoring 12,535 marks in 3DMark06 at 1,920x1,200 4xAA 16xAF there's no doubt it's going to be quick.


Sapphire is planning on officially launching the Radeon HD 4890 Atomic 1,024MB card next week. Taking into account the price of HD 4890 OC cards and a smattering of pre-overclocked GeForce GTX 275s, the Atomic will need to etail at below £250 for it to make implicit sense. That may mean a basic bundle and lean software set. Let's see what Sapphire and its etail partners can do.

HEXUS Forums :: 3 Comments

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For once it didn't take 6 months+ for non-reference ATI cards to make it to market! Hooray! Let's hope this isn't a one-off…

Unfortunately the 6 + 8 pin power configuration means I'd need a new power supply to even use this one - I remember seeing a black ASUS board with the same thing a while back so I'm guessing this will be the norm for the 4890s with large overclocks.
Can't you just use an 8pin adaptor fed off two molexes?
Good point, looking back Sapphire bundled one with the 4870X2 Atomic (thing in the middle of the 4th picture), so they'll likely include one with this too :)