After a brief break, ATI’s relentless release schedule of Radeon HD 5000 series cards is unfolding again. As expected, it is the affordable ATI Radeon HD 5670 releasing today. As far as releases go, this may be the most expected and unsurprising in a long time. For consumers, this means world’s first sub-$100 DX11 GPU is here.

Surely, ATI’s initial HD 5000 series plans would have suggested a lower MSRP, considering the initial SRP on the Radeon HD 5750 512MB was $109. However, due to very little competition and TSMC manufacturing problems, the prices of all graphics cards have gone north – with the HD 5750 retailing at a minimum of $129, with most 1GB variants around the $150 range. Furthermore, Nvidia’s woefully overpriced Geforce GT 240 is priced at $99, which is what ATI is positioning today’s new HD 5670 against.

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After a brief break, ATI’s relentless release schedule of Radeon HD
5000 series cards is unfolding again. As expected, it is the affordable
ATI Radeon HD 5670 releasing today. As far as releases go, this may be
the most expected and unsurprising in a long time. For consumers, this
means world’s first sub-$100 DX11 GPU is here.

Surely, ATI’s initial HD 5000 series plans would have suggested a lower
MSRP, considering the initial SRP on the Radeon HD 5750 512MB was $109.
However, due to very little competition and TSMC manufacturing
problems, the prices of all graphics cards have gone north – with the
HD 5750 retailing at a minimum of $129, with most 1GB variants around
the $150 range. Furthermore, Nvidia’s woefully overpriced Geforce GT
240 is priced at $99, which is what ATI is positioning today’s new HD
5670 against.

As far as comparisons go, this is a completely one sided affair.
Whether it be feature set, performance, power consumption/thermals, the
HD 5670 ends up far ahead in every respect, priced at the same $99. To
be fair, the GT 240 was already an irrelevant card when compared to the
now ancient 9800 GT anyway. The HD 5670 fairs surprisingly well against
the 9800 GT, trading performance victories. The feature set and
thermals makes the HD 5670 a no-brainer at $99. Perhaps the HD 5670’s
only obstacles are the sparsely available last-gen champions – the HD
4770 and the HD 4850. They do offer a slightly better price-performance
ratio, though at a significant deficit in terms of features and power
consumption.

Availability at this moment is not great as the card hasn’t shown up on most e-tailers. However, wide availability is expected very soon. Next up from AMD is the rumoured HD 5830 within two weeks’ time, followed by the HD 5500 and HD 5400 cards on February 6th.

At the moment, the ATI Radeon HD 5670 is sitting pretty at the $99 price point with a release as smooth as anyone could hope for. Let there be no doubt though – this is not a powerful gaming card, though it will play most games with details turned up at lower resolutions (i.e. 1600×900 and under). With GF100 itself massively delayed, it will be a long while before we see any real competition from Nvidia. Perhaps that is the only downside – as this card would have been priced lower had there been competition.

You can browse through a list of reviews compiled by forum member adrianlee here.