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Sapphire Radeon HD 4670 GDDR4 & HD 4830
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by Rob Williams on February 25, 2009 in AMD-Based GPU

Gaming on a budget isn’t as difficult as it once was, thanks to superb offerings from both ATI and NVIDIA that go for a modest price. But, what about the sub-$100 crowd? We’ll find that out here, at least from the ATI side of things, with Sapphire’s HD 4670 GDDR4 and HD 4830. Both feature great efficiency, and believe it or not, great overclocking as well.

Far Cry 2

Sequels are common, and three of our six games used here prove it. But what’s different with Far Cry 2, though, is that while the other sequels here don’t throw you for a loop when you first load it up and generally give you what you’d expect to see, this game does the absolute opposite. We knew for months that Far Cry 2 wasn’t going to be a direct continuation of the original, but for the most part, this game could have gone by any other name and no one would even make a connection. Luckily for Ubisoft, though, the game can still be great fun.

Like the original, this game is a first-person shooter that offers open-ended gameplay, similar to S.T.A.L.K.E.R. You’ll be able to roam the huge map (50km^2) of a central African state which will mostly be traversed by vehicle, as walking even 2% in any direction gets very tedious after a while. This game is a perfect GPU benchmark simply because the graphics are better than the average, with huge draw distances, realistic nature and even a slew of animals to pass by (and kill if you are evil enough).

Our run through takes place in the Shwasana region, and consists of leaving a small hut and walking towards four people prepared to kill me for no apparent reason (except that this is a game). After the opponents are eliminated, a walk along the dirt road continues for another twenty seconds until we reach a small hut with supplies.

Though Far Cry 2 is a rather attractive-looking title, it also looks like one that would run on most hardware, but it’s not until I tried running the game off these two cards that I realized just how hardcore it actually was. Our highest resolution of 2560×1600 was so unplayable, that we were simply unable to continue with the run. Again, this isn’t something that should surprise anyone.

Graphics Card
Best Playable
Avg. FPS
NVIDIA GTX 285 1GB x 2
2560×1600, Max Detail, 8xAA
46.502 FPS
NVIDIA GTX 295 1792MB x 2
2560×1600, Max Detail, 4xAA
88.608 FPS
Zotac GTX 295 1792MB
2560×1600, Max Detail, 4xAA
55.951 FPS
Palit HD 4870 X2 2GB
2560×1600, Max Detail, 4xAA
43.600 FPS
Diamond HD 4870 1GB
2560×1600, Max Detail, 4xAA
41.777 FPS
Zotac GTX 285 1GB AMP!
2560×1600, Max Detail, 4xAA
40.375 FPS
NVIDIA GTX 285 1GB
2560×1600, Max Detail, 4xAA
37.785 FPS
Palit GTX 280 1GB
2560×1600, Max Detail, 0xAA
43.460 FPS
XFX GTX 260/216 896MB
2560×1600, Max Detail, 0xAA
38.527 FPS
Sapphire HD 4830 512MB
1920×1200 – Max Detail, 0xAA
38.323 FPS
Sapphire HD 4670 512MB
1920×1200 – Max Detail, 0xAA
28.819 FPS

Not too much changes between Far Cry 2 and our previous titles. 1920×1200 is still the maximum resolution we were able to push, but both cards gave pretty good average FPS there. Again, the HD 4670 was on the border to going down further to 1680×1050, but anywhere that close to 30 FPS is feasible.