|ASUS Radeon HD 4830 Video Card EAH4830|
|Reviews - Featured Reviews: Video Cards|
|Written by Mathew Williams - Edited by Olin Coles|
|Wednesday, 26 November 2008|
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EAH4830 Detailed Features
As an ATI partner, Asus relies on ATI provide the guts of its Radeon series of graphics cards. The EAH4830, as with all other HD 4830's, features a RV770LE chip from ATI. The RV770LE is essentially the same RV770 chip used in the rest of the HD 4800 family, but with one notable difference: the number of active stream processors has been reduced from 800 to 640. Fortunately, the memory interface was left untouched and the HD 4830 should speed along at the same 256-bit memory bus as its bigger brothers.
ATI/AMD refer to their RV770 architecture as the "Terascale Graphics Engine." This is a reference to the fact that the HD 4800 series of graphics cards were the first to break the one teraflop barrier in desktop graphics processing power. While you may not see the teraflop barrier with the HD 4830, it does retain the key features of this architecture, including DirectX 10.1 support, 24x anti-aliasing, and a full range of texture filtering options. As you'll see in our benchmarks later, this adds up to a very formidable card and excellent price/performance ratio.
To help compensate for the 160 stream processor deficit of the HD 4830, Asus went with high quality GDDR3 from Qimonda and overclocked it to 2000MHz. This adds up to a memory bandwidth on par with the HD 4850, and should provide the EAH4830 with an edge over its competition. Factory overclocking has become very popular with the last few generations of video cards, but most of the other HD 4830's on the market are running at stock speeds. While other cards may be able to reach these speeds, Asus is currently one of the only manufacturers to guarantee it by sending their 4830's out the door already overclocked.
The other big selling point that differentiates the EAH4830 from its competition is the use of high quality power components. The higher quality parts should result in better overall stability and reduced heat output, particularly when overclocking. Interestingly, the HD 4830 has the same power specification as the HD 4850 (110 Watts). This is likely due to the binning process that takes place at ATI. The RV770 chips that fail to run the full 800 stream processors need for an HD 4850, are dropped down to the next bin and labeled as RV770LE chips for use in HD 4830's. Even with portions of the chip deactivated, these chips are likely to run at the same voltage and require the same amount of power as the other HD 4800 series cards.