TweakTown
Tech content trusted by users in North America and around the world
5,917 Reviews & Articles | 38,127 News Posts

Sapphire Radeon X850XT Platinum Edition AGP Review - Final Thoughts

Today we're looking at Sapphire's X850XT PE, or Platinum Edition. Not only that, but we'll be testing it in the AGP format since many of our readers have perfectly serviceable AGP motherboards and haven't felt the dire need to move on to PCI-Express as yet. So kick up your heels and relax as we take a tour of the latest and greatest offering from ATI in the form of the X850XT and we'll see how it compares to its smaller brother, the X800XT!

| AMD Radeon GPU in Video Cards | Posted: Aug 30, 2005 4:00 am
TweakTown Rating: 9.0%      Manufacturer: Sapphire

Final Thoughts

 

When everything is finished up, we end up with a video board that doesn't crush the venerable X800, but does show a consistent trend of better performance numbers. Considering that the X850 has gone thorough some price cuts of late (with more rumored to come down the path very soon), the X850 can be had for just $10 more than the X800. Both are very solid performers so why not get the better of the two for just $10 more?

 

As far as actual performance goes, the X850 provided by Sapphire offers excellent frame rates in any type gaming scenario currently available. Granted, the new nVidia 7800 series kicks some major butt, but this board is over $100 more expensive (the cheapest being about $500) and it doesn't have an AGP offering. For those who still have a perfectly serviceable system using the AGP bus, the X850 is the cream of the crop.

 

We've been beating around the bush with regards to pricing of the X850, but to come right out with the information, the X850XT PE can be had for about $400. Add to this the rumored price cuts that will likely be hitting the streets soon and you have some very high performance numbers for the money. Yes it is still a good deal of cash for a video board, but nowhere near the top price you might expect to pay.

 

I was also very impressed with the overclocking of the VPU core. I don't generally expect to see great overclocking potential from a core, especially with stock air cooling in place. Getting to 586MHz with perfect stability and no artifacts was excellent and hitting over 600MHz with no crashes was a lot more than I expected. If you're into water or other alternative cooling, you will likely get even higher. The memory wasn't that great in the overclocking department, but given that it is almost running at its rated speeds to begin with, this isn't too surprising.

 

Some have probably been thinking about that monstrous cooler I showed you earlier. Just to give a more complete picture of it, the thing cranks up to full speed when you first boot the system. After between 5-10 seconds it kicks back down to a more normal operating speed. Even during my overclocking tests I never heard the fan get any louder so you won't have to worry about this being another nVidia dustbuster.

 

Bottom line... If you're happy with your AGP based rig but still want to get a top-end video card, then let me say up front that you've found your board. For those with AGP, this is as good as it gets and with recent price cuts it won't completely break the bank.

 

- Where to buy it

 

Sapphire Technology RADEON X850 XT Platinum Edition, (256 MB) Graphic Card

 

- Pros

 

Excellent performance

 

Priced right for a performance card

 

Great overclockability

 

Good software package

 

- Cons

 

Air cooler starts off loud

 

Memory has limited overclocking headroom

 

Rating - 9 out of 10 and TweakTown's "MUST HAVE" Best Features Award!

 

 

Right of Reply

We at TweakTown openly invite the companies who provide us with review samples / who are mentioned or discussed to express their opinion of our content. If any company representative wishes to respond, we will publish the response here.

Further Reading: Read and find more Video Cards content at our Video Cards reviews, guides and articles index page.

Do you get our RSS feed? Get It!

Post a Comment about this content

Latest Tech News Posts

View More News Posts

TweakTown Web Poll

Question: Facebook's acquisition of Oculus VR will...

Improve Oculus Rift Development

Hamper Oculus Rift Development

Completely destroy Oculus Rift Development

Let's wait and see, I'm not sure

or View the Results

View More Polls

Forum Activity

View More Forum Posts

Press Releases

View More Press Releases