Coming in at US$249 and US$349, the AMD Radeon 'Pitcairn' HD 7870/7850 fills the gap in the middle of the increasingly crowded Southern Islands family. If you are on a specific budget and not looking for absolute performance and don't want to wait for the impending arrival of Nvidia's Kepler to apply performance and price pressures, then you may be interested in having a look at our review.
Introduction / Quick Recap
Prior reading before our quick recap: AMD Radeon HD 7800 Series enters the fray just in time to fight GK104 by Nebojsa Novakovic
Glorious shot of the 28nm Pitcain silicon in BGA form factor
In case you've been living under a rock, the HD 7800 'Pitcairn' cards that are released today is sandwiched between Southern Islands flagship HD 7900 'Tahiti' and the entry level HD 7700 'Carpe Verde', price and performance wise
The HD 7800 series also brings the much vaunted Graphics Card Next architecture to replace the aging VLIW4/VLIW5 designs of previous generations
Feature set wise, the HD 7800 series has the same selling points that we've seen from new AMD cards over the last two months, including improvements in process/power efficiency, flexible multi-monitor configurations and an improved UVD engine
We are told that we will not see actual retail cards until 19th March (2 weeks from this review). The consolation is that there will be an impressive array of custom AIB board designs/bloat when it does hit the shops.