Palit Radeon HD 4870 512MB Sonic Dual Edition Video Card Review

by Michael "SKYMTL" Hoenig     |     September 24, 2008

Palit Radeon HD 4870 512MB Sonic Dual Edition Video Card Review

Manufacturer Product Page: Palit Microsystems Ltd.
Product Number: AE=4870S+0452
Availability: Now
Warranty: 2 Years
Price: Click Here to Compare Prices

In the last few months we have seen more new graphics card releases than many people were ever expecting after the longest time without much change in the GPU market. While some of these new cards were just rehashes of existing technology, some were brand new series based on evolutionary technologies. One of the more talked-about topics lately has to be ATIís new 4800-series of graphics cards and how it has provided a springboard for a whole new generation of competitive products from the boys in Markham. Without a doubt, the ATI HD 4800-series has helped vault ATIís name back into the limelight after many people had begun reading them their last rites. We have had several reviews of these cards and their follow-up designs here on Hardware Canucks and have been impressed again and again.

With all the hoopla surrounding recent releases in the graphics card industry, it has been a bit hard to focus on the cards which are based on existing technology but still bring something new to the table. Nvidiaís board partners are well known for releasing legions of pre-overclocked cards into the channel but ATIís partners have always been somewhat lacking when it comes to introducing anything other than reference designs. However, with the release of the HD4800-series, things have rapidly changed with custom PCBs, better cooling solutions and higher clock speeds becoming more common place on ATI graphics cards. While it doesnít seem like these out-of-the-box overclocks reach the same heights as their Nvidia counterparts, ATIís partners are trying and succeeding in adding value to their products.

One of the first companies to release their non-reference cards is always Palit Multimedia and when it comes to the HD 4870, they came to the table with all guns blazing. They have released their HD 4870 512MB Sonic Dual Edition which not only sports a custom dual slot, dual fan heatsink but it also features a unique dual BIOS setup. With this type of setup, a user is able to quickly and painlessly switch between a stock BIOS and a custom overclocked BIOS. There will also be a 1GB version of the Sonic Dual Edition which will be released within the next few weeks with all the same features and (of course) a ďslightĒ price premium.

Speaking of pricing, the Palit Sonic Dual Edition is surprisingly affordable at around the same price most other reference-based HD 4870 cards. Unfortunately, while the bang for buck value may be through the stratosphere Palitís paltry 2-year warranty sours the experience somewhat but just remember that two years is probably longer than you will probably keep this card.

All things considered, it seems like Palitís stars have aligned perfectly since the HD 4870 Sonic Dual Edition is being released at just the right time to compliment the rest of the ATI lineup while adding some needed spice with its faster clock speeds. Letís hope it performs up to our expectations.


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