CHIP DESIGNER AMD has dropped the Radeon HD6790 into its already crowded midrange line up.
AMD's Radeon HD6790 has been designed and priced to sit somewhere between the aging and cheaper Radeon HD5770 and the Radeon HD6850. The £120 card has 800 graphics cores with a 256-bit memory interface, and the GPU chip is fabbed at 40nm.
Sapphire was one of the first of AMD's board partners to announce a Radeon HD6790 card, with the GPU running at 840MHz and the 1GB of DDR5 memory clocked at 1050MHz, an effective transfer rate of 4.2Gbps. The graphics card has Crossfire and Eyefinity support, two dual-link DVI outputs and a single HDMI output. As is nearly standard these days, the HD6790 card needs two 6-pin PCI-Express power connectors.
It seems that Nvidia's Geforce GTX550 is the intended target for AMD's Radeon HD6790 but the word on the street is that AMD is really battling itself.
Most reviews are placing the Radeon HD6790 on par with Nvidia's GTX550, however AMD's Radeon HD6850 offers far more bang for the buck.
Sapphire's card comes in at just under £100 excluding VAT, with a similar board from XFX tipping up at the same price point.
While the Radeon HD6790 might lose out against its bigger brother, the HD6850, it does seem to offer perhaps the best performance available at the moment for £120 including VAT. µ