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Gigabyte Radeon HD 4770 512MB
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by Rob Williams on August 27, 2009 in AMD-Based GPU

Have just $100 to splurge on a new graphics card? Is having low power consumption and low temperatures important to you? If so, the HD 4770 certainly deserves your attention. This budget card handled each one of our games at 1920×1080 just fine, overclocks like a dream and has power and temp numbers worth drooling over.

Race Driver: GRID

If you primarily play games on a console, your choices for quality racing games are plenty. On the PC, that’s not so much the case. While there are a good number, there aren’t enough for a given type of racing game, from sim, to arcade. So when Race Driver: GRID first saw its release, many gamers were excited, and for good reason. It’s not a sim in the truest sense of the word, but it’s certainly not arcade, either. It’s somewhere in between.

The game happens to be great fun, though, and similar to console games like Project Gotham Racing, you need a lot of skill to succeed at the game’s default difficulty level. And like most great racing games, GRID happens to look absolutely stellar, and each of the game’s locations look very similar to their real-world counterparts. All in all, no racing fan should ignore this one.

Manual Run-through: For our testing here, we choose the city where both Snoop Dogg and Sublime hit their fame, the LBC, also known as Long Beach City. We choose this level because it’s not overly difficult, and also because it’s simply nice to look at. Our run consists of an entire 2-lap race, with the cars behind us for almost the entire race.

Many racing games loathe slower graphics cards, but GRID has little to worry about, as even our lowly HD 4770 delivered a staggering 70 FPS at 1920×1080, which included 4x anti-aliasing and totally maxed out detail settings. Even the minimum FPS we saw was pretty amazing. Any player of this game with at least this graphics card isn’t going to have too much to complain about.

Graphics Card
Best Playable
Min FPS
Avg. FPS
NVIDIA GTX 295 1792MB (Reference)
2560×1600 – Max Detail, 4xAA
82
101.690
ATI HD 4890 1GB (Sapphire)
2560×1600 – Max Detail, 4xAA
57
70.797
NVIDIA GTX 285 1GB (EVGA)
2560×1600 – Max Detail, 4xAA
54
66.042
NVIDIA GTX 275 896MB (Reference)
2560×1600 – Max Detail, 4xAA
52
63.617
ATI HD 4870 1GB (Reference)
2560×1600 – Max Detail, 4xAA
51
63.412
NVIDIA GTX 260 896MB (XFX)
2560×1600 – Max Detail, 4xAA
45
54.809
NVIDIA GTX 250 1GB (EVGA)
2560×1600 – Max Detail, 4xAA
35
43.663
ATI HD 4770 512MB (Gigabyte)
1920×1080 – Max Detail, 4xAA
55
69.403

If our Call of Juarez and F.E.A.R. 2 results were anything to go by, you’d immediately assume that given the nice performance at 1920×1080, this game might be playable at 2560×1600. That wasn’t the case here, though, because GRID remains as a game that’s hungry for graphics memory, and because of this, the game ran at less than 1 FPS simply at the main menu, when running 2560×1600. No amount of tweaking was going to make the game run well there, so we stuck with 1920×1080 as our best playable.