First impression on unpacking the Q702 test unit was the solid feel and clean, minimalist styling.
Sapphire BLIZZARD RADEON X850 XT Platinum Edition
- Strong performance, quiet cooling
- Pricey, does not justify its cost
Another powerful card using the ATI X800, the Sapphire X800 XT runs very well, but at a huge cost premium that may turn off some consumers.
Price$ 999.00 (AUD)
Buy now (Selling at 5 stores)
This PCIe Radeon X800 XT is a little more powerful than the Nvidia 6600 GT-based cards we have tested, but there is a large price premium for that extra bit of performance.
However, the difference between this card and ATI Radeon X700 PRO-based cards was very noticeable in all resolutions--especially in the higher resolution tests, where this card recorded test scores almost 100 percent faster. This was due to the massive difference in throughput between the X800 XT, which can render more than double the amount of pixels per clock cycle than the X700 PRO chip. Physically, the card requires supplemental power to be connected, and the necessary cable is supplied.
For cooling, it relies on an ATI reference design heat sink and fan for the GPU. Its fan is rather large and can push a fair amount of air without spinning too fast, so is not very loud.
Connectivity is good, as it contains video input as well as output. Component cables are supplied, which allow the card to be connected to a high-definition TV. Two games are also bundled with the card.
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