Rumour: ATI Radeon HD 4890 X2 cards in the works

Written by Ben Hardwidge

April 15, 2009 // 4:38 p.m.

Tags: #1ghz #4890 #hd #interview #power #radeon #tdp #x2

Companies: #amd #ati

Now that dual-GPU graphics cards are frequently topping the performance leagues, the first question that many people asked when the ATI Radeon HD 4890 surfaced was whether there would be an X2 version. Officially, AMD has so far declined to comment on it, and it’s likely that such a card would be difficult to manufacture when you consider that a single 4890 has a quoted TDP of 190W. However, reports have started appearing about potential Radeon HD 4890 X2 cards.

According to the rumour mill, there won’t be a reference Radeon HD 4890 X2 card from AMD, but it’s up to AMD’s board partners as to whether they want to manufacture such a card. Bright Side of News claims to have spoken to one anonymous board partner, which the site says plans to make a 4890 X2 card with two 1GHz GPUs and options for 2GB and 4GB of GDDR5 memory. The site doesn’t reveal the identity of the board partner, but says that it has seen some “engineering drawings” of the card.

The rumours also point to a recent video interview with AMD’s Saša Marinkovic from the guys at www.pcgameshardware.de. Bright Side of News says that Marinkovic makes a “we're going flat out to capture the crown statement”, while Softpedia says the video reveals that “AMD's AIB partners would be given the opportunity to make their own Radeon HD 4890X2,” adding that “the support for such a card is already available, thanks to an 8+6 power configuration that is featured on the current reference boards.”

However, after watching the video ourselves, we have to say that Marinkovic is much more guarded than the reports imply. He mentions that Radeon HD 4890 reference boards can feature two eight-pin power connectors so that board partners can make overclocked cards. Plus, when asked about the potential for a Radeon HD 4890 X2, Marinkovic says: “similar to when we launched the 4870, you could see the performance and the scaling by putting two of the cards in the system in a CrossFire mode. So, similar to that, if you take 4890 and run it in CrossFire mode it’s a great indication where the performance can get.”

Marinkovic doesn’t in fact say that board partners will be able to make Radeon HD 4890 X2 cards, but you could say that there’s an implication there. That is, if you put two Radeon HD 4890 cards in CrossFire mode, you can see how a future top-end card might perform.

There’s a lot of rumour and speculation here, and it’s also fair to say that a Radeon HD 4890 X2 card would need a lot of power, as well as a hefty cooler. Would you be interested in picking up a Radeon HD 4890 X2 card? Let us know your thoughts in the forums.

Via Tom's Hardware.
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