1. Computers
  2. Display Drivers
  3. Graphics Cards
  4. Memory
  5. Motherboards
  6. Processors
  7. Software
  8. Storage
  9. Operating Systems


Facebook RSS Twitter Twitter Google Plus


Phoronix Test Suite

OpenBenchmarking.org

Sapphire Radeon HD 4850 Toxic 512MB

Michael Larabel

Published on 7 August 2008
Written by Michael Larabel
Page 8 of 8 - 1 Comment

Conclusion:

Sapphire Technology has been one of ATI's closest AIB partners and one of their largest. Sapphire manufacturers a plethora of ATI graphics cards and they always seem to be quite popular with enthusiasts for their reliability, top-notch features, and competitive pricing. Sapphire just doesn't manufacturer two Radeon HD 4850s -- one that complies with ATI's reference design and specifications -- and then the Radeon HD 4850 Toxic, but they actually manufacturer four different SKUs. With the other two Radeon HD 4850 models sold by Sapphire, one ships with 1GB of video memory and the other one just ships with a very large dual-slot cooling solution to satisfy the growing needs of overclockers. But what did we think of the Sapphire Radeon HD 4850 Toxic?

The ATI Radeon HD 4850 was already one impressive beast capable of taking out the NVIDIA GeForce 9800GTX and the earlier Radeon HD 3870 by strong margins when applying enough load through anti-aliasing (AA) and anisotropic filtering (AF) on Linux. Sapphire has been successful in taking the Radeon HD 4850 a step further by using the high-performance Zalman VF900 copper heatsink, switching to faster Samsung GDDR3 memory, and applying a factory overclock to the RV770 core. These improvements have positioned the Sapphire Radeon HD 4850 Toxic half-way between a normal Radeon HD 4850 and Radeon HD 4870, or what would be a "Radeon HD 4860". This equates to being just a few frames per second faster, but the Sapphire Radeon HD 4850 Toxic is selling just $10~20 USD more than the Radeon HD 4850 graphics cards running at the reference speeds. Beyond that, the Sapphire Radeon HD 4850 Toxic can still be pushed further, but due to the lack of OverDrive support in the available Catalyst Linux drivers we were unable to overclock it with Catalyst 8.6. In addition to the Zalman heatsink cooling the RV770 core more efficiently, the fan was quieter than the reference cooling solution and it was almost inaudible at times.

We had only published four of the OpenGL test results from the Phoronix Test Suite but we had run other tests as well and had experienced performance gains across the board. We will be delivering additional benchmarks of the Sapphire Radeon HD 4850 Toxic in the near future as the Catalyst Linux driver receives additional RV770-targeted features in their evolutionary Linux leap.

In addition to the unique features of this Sapphire graphics card, the same Radeon HD 4850 features still apply such as its Stream Computing support, HDMI audio, Unified Video Decoder 2 (UVD2), and open-source support through either of the AMD-sponsored drivers. The Sapphire Radeon HD 4850 will work with both the xf86-video-ati and xf86-video-radeonhd drivers for basic mode-setting support at this time. Open-source 2D and 3D acceleration support for the Radeon HD 4800 series will arrive in the coming months.

While the Sapphire Radeon HD 4850 Toxic 512MB is $10~20 more than a normal Radeon HD 4850, it's still $80~90 less than any of the current Radeon HD 4870 graphics cards. With the after-market heatsink, factory overclock, and the overclocking potential of this graphics card, the Sapphire Radeon HD 4850 Toxic is a great buy. Additionally, you can still put two (or four) of these Toxic graphics cards in a CrossFireX configuration for even greater performance, which soon will be supported under Linux. Expect more Linux tests of this graphics card soon.

For more on the Radeon HD 4850 and related graphics cards (along with pricing information), head on over to TestFreaks.com.


Phoronix Product Rating: 9 / 10

8
Next Page >>
About The Author
Michael Larabel is the principal author of Phoronix.com and founded the web-site in 2004 with a focus on enriching the Linux hardware experience and being the largest web-site devoted to Linux hardware reviews, particularly for products relevant to Linux gamers and enthusiasts but also commonly reviewing servers/workstations and embedded Linux devices. Michael has written more than 10,000 articles covering the state of Linux hardware support, Linux performance, graphics hardware drivers, and other topics. Michael is also the lead developer of the Phoronix Test Suite, Phoromatic, and OpenBenchmarking.org automated testing software. He can be followed via and or contacted via .
Latest Linux Hardware Reviews
  1. NVIDIA GeForce GTX 980: The Best GPU For Linux Gamers
  2. ROCCAT LUA: A Linux-Friendly Gaming Mouse
  3. Cheetah Mounts: The Affordable Way To Put Your TV On The Wall
  4. Scythe Mugen MAX
Latest Linux Articles
  1. Preview: Radeon Gallium3D Performance For CS:GO On Linux
  2. XWayland Linux Gaming Performance With GNOME Wayland On Fedora 21
  3. EXT4/Btrfs/XFS/F2FS Benchmarks On Linux 3.17
  4. Fedora 21 Alpha First Impressions: It's Great
Latest Linux News
  1. Mir 0.8 Works On Less ABI Breakage, Touchspots, Responsiveness
  2. CS:GO For Linux Gains Better Stability, Community Server Support
  3. NVIDIA Issues Updated 340.46 Long-Lived Driver Release
  4. KDE Plasma 5.1 Now In Beta
  5. Systemd & Debian Were Most Popular In September
  6. Microsoft Announces... Windows 10 With A Start Menu
  7. Borderlands 2 Launches On Steam For Linux
  8. Debian Jessie Might Get Rid Of The kFreeBSD Port
  9. Fedora Might Try A New Scheduling Strategy For Its Releases
  10. AMD's Catalyst Working On A GLSL Shader Cache
Latest Forum Discussions
  1. NVIDIA Alerts Nouveau: They're Starting To Sign/Validate GPU Firmware Images
  2. Updated and Optimized Ubuntu Free Graphics Drivers
  3. Nero CD/DVD Burning Software On Linux Is Dead
  4. New Group Calls For Boycotting Systemd
  5. FSF Issues Statement On Shellshock Bash Vulnerability
  6. X.Org Women Outreach Program Only Turns Up Two Applicants So Far
  7. X.Org Is Looking For Some Female Help
  8. Advertisements On Phoronix