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A sneak-peak at the HD6850 and HD6870 + some AMD Fusion ‘Llano’ information

Today we can bring you the names of the new upcoming AMD-GPU’s as well as some images of the reference cards. We also have some information about the upcoming AMD Fusion APU’s.

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INTRODUCTION

AMD’s launch of their next generation of GPU’s is no secret. While we still cannot give you any specifications or performance numbers, we can tell you the names, as well as give you some photos of the reference cards.

The cards that AMD will release later this week are part of the “Northern Island” family of GPU’s, and have the codename “Bart” and “Bart XT”. Though the name implies that they are enthusiast level cards (just as the HD5870 was at launch), AMD has reshuffled their naming scheme, and these cards are instead aimed at the mid-range or “Gaming sweetspot” as AMD calls it.

In addition to the HD6850 and HD6870 we can also provide some info about the upcoming Fusion APU’s (codenamed “Llano”) that we will see later next year.

THE HD6850

The HD6850 is a relatively short card which should fit into most cases.

 

The reference card comes in black and is quite nice looking, though of course each vendor will have their own version of the card.

At the end of the card we see one of the new features of these cards; two mini-DisplayPorts, Version 1.2 instead of 1.1. Version 1.2 allows for double the transfer-rate as well as the ability to drive more than one monitor from a single DP-connector. In addition to the DP-connectors we also get an HDMI-connector, a Dual-Link DVI-connector and a Single-link DVI-connector.

The HD6850 draws power from one PCI-E-power connector.

THE HD6870

As expected, the HD6870 is a bigger card than the HD6850.

It uses the same black “chassis” and fan as the HD6850.

The HD6870 comes with the same connectors as the HD6850. At the end of the card we see one of the new features of these cards; two mini-DisplayPorts that are version 1.2 instead of 1.1. Version 1.2 allows for double the transfer-rate as well as the ability to drive more than one monitor from a single DP-connector. In addition to the DP-connectors we also get a HDMI-connector, a Dual-Link DVI-connector and a Single-link DVI-connector.

The HD6870 needs power from two PCI-E power connectors, unlike the HD6850.

AMD FUSION “LLANO” APU

During it’s product launch for the HD6K-GPU line, AMD also introduced some other content, namely information about the upcoming Fusion APU’s (APU standing for Accelerated Processing Units). AMD told us that except for the high-end CPU’s (like the upcoming 8-cores), all their processors next year should be APU’s, meaning that they will have graphics integrated onto the CPU. The first processors will use a 40nm microarchitecture (codenamed Ontario and Zacate) but the APU’s codenamed “Llano” will be built by GlobalFoundries with a 32 nm process.

We got a small demo of the “Llano”-APU running the DX11-benchmark AvP, and it was surprisingly smooth. The APU’s of course are not intended for enthusiast gaming, but we can see a lot of applications for a decent DX-11 chip integrated into the CPU. This is especially true considering that the power need is rumored to be around 20W.

CONCLUSION

We hope we have whet our readers’ appetites for information a bit when it comes to the HD6850 and HD6870, and hope to see our readers back in a few days when have several reviews of retail cards using these GPU’s!

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