AMD Radeon HD 6790 1GB Review
When NVIDIA introduced their GTX 550 Ti, the reaction of the market and most of the mainstream press was relatively mixed. At $150 it fell into a price bracket where AMD had very little to answer with but at the same time, we felt that it was overpriced and really didn’t bring anything new to the table. Both of these points are now being covered since AMD is now releasing their own $150 graphics card and in order to cope with a potential competitor, the GTX 550 Ti has seen its price drop to between $130 and $145.
The aptly named HD 6790 1GB will be gunning for a number of cards in NVIDIA’s current lineup while sitting between the older HD 5830 and HD 5770 cards. Contrary to what many believed, the first of AMD’s lower-end lineup isn’t based off of the Turks or Caicos architectures but rather a revised Barts-series core which is dubbed the Barts LE.
If the right kind of card is offered, the $125 to $175 price range can be highly profitable for a company like AMD since the vast majority of non-integrated GPU volume comes from here. However, by and large the most important aspect of this market is its appeal to large system builders like Dell, HP and Lenovo who often draw upon sub-$200 cards for their performance-oriented products. We’re sure to see the HD 6790 alongside the OEM-only HD 6770 being offered in a number of systems soon after launch.
Even though the HD 6790 will be retailing for a mere $150, we have some high expectations for it. With the inclusion of technologies like UVD3, AMD’s APP and Eyefinity, a small amount of money can potentially go a long way.
AMD’s target for the HD 6790 is quite obviously the GTX 550 Ti but the potential for performance that equals some of the many GTX 460 versions is also a real possibility. Upon first glance it seems like AMD is introducing the card many wished the GTX 550 Ti would have been but it will be interesting to see where it ultimately lands once the dust settles.
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