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Old October 23, 2008, 05:23 AM
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SKYMTL SKYMTL is offline
HardwareCanuck Review Editor
Join Date: Feb 2007
Location: Montreal
Posts: 13,622
Default The New ATI HD4830. Buyer Beware?

Some of you may know (but only a few of you may actually care) that today marks the release of ATI's HD 4830 which is supposed to compete directly with the 9800 GT errrr.... 8800 GT 512MB.

Unfortuantely, the folks over at Techpowerup have learned that there seems to have been a serious problem with the review samples ATI sent out to numerous review sites. Basically, it seems that somewhere wires were crossed and cards have been shipping with 560 Shaders versus the specified 640.

The odd thing is that some cards have the nominal 640 shaders while others are gimped. This results in an approximate 10% performance difference between the two cards and unfortunately puts some serious questions behind all of the HD 4830 reviews that have been posted. Were the reviewers using the "proper" card with 640 shaders or the one with the incorrect shader count? In this Hardware Canucks stands behind Techpowerup in asking that all review sites publish which card they used for their benchmarks.

Even more unfortunately, this casts some serious doubt upon the cards currently making their way to the retail channels. The consumer has NO WAY of knowing if or how many 560 shader equipped cards made it to ATI's board partners. This means that any number of HD 4830s could be underperforming without the customer realizing it.

Will this mean a recall of the cards? If not, will ATI release a statement? One way or another, this little slip-up puts some serious doubt upon the launch of this card. Hopefully, the launch will be trouble free after this speedbump but until things are put to bed with this situation...buyer beware.

Unfortunately, UPS still has posession of our card so we can't verify this for ourselves. Long story folks, don't ask...

You can find all of W1zzard's investigation HERE and I encourage all of you to read through it. That is what good journalism is all about folks!!

Stay tuned for additional updates.
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