ATI's most recent desktop GPU launch, the Radeon HD 4770
, was enthusiastically received by both the press and the public when it first appeared at the end of April. In our review, we praised it, saying "if you’ve got no more than £85 to spend and want a graphics card that delivers great performance at 1,280 x 1,024 and 1,680 x 1,050 in today’s latest games, you really can’t go wrong with the 4770."
Gamers flocked to retail sites to buy them, and it slotted straight into our regular Buyer's Guides
. There was only one problem - the HD 4770 rapidly became impossible to actually buy. Out at Computex we discovered the reason why - yield problems
meant ATI simply couldn't make enough chips. Then we found out that the reference board design
, which was supplied to the media for review, was impossible for manufacturers to make at the £80 price that made the card so attractive.
All of which meant the HD 4770 fell from favour, but Sapphire has announced today it's making a new version of the card, complete with a custom HSF from Arctic Cooling. The new card also features HDMI, D-SUB and DVI connections. The GPU remains the same, featuring 640 stream processors, clocked at 750MHz (compared to 625MHz and 575MHz on the HD 4850 and HD 4830 respectively). Sapphire is shipping the card with 512MB of GDDR5 memory clocked at 800MHz (3.2GHz effective), so the card has 51.2GB/sec of memory bandwidth.
The cards are being built right now, and Sapphire told us they'll be available in the UK in two to three weeks time, for a "similar" price to the models currently listed on retailer sites - so it should be around £80 to £90. Is it too late for the HD 4770, or now that you can actually find one, are you going to be picking one up? Let us know in the forums.