Published in Graphics
Dual GPU graphics cards make little sense
Too expensive for what you get
With the estimated pricing of AMD's Radeon HD 3870 X2 coming in at over €400 as we reported here, it doesn't take long to realize that this product has a very limited market appeal. You can pick up a pair of Radeon HD 3870 cards for less than €175 from both Gigabyte and Sapphire, with many other brands going for well under €200 a card.
So, for anyone with a dual x16 slot motherboard, we doubt there will be much, if any, performance benefit in moving to a Radeon HD 3870 X2, unless of course you're intending to upgrade to quad CrossFire.
Even if you were to build a new system, you could easily save €60-80 by going down the two-card route, and that's money that could be put toward other parts in your system, such as a better motherboard or a more expensive CPU.
Hopefully, the price of the Radeon HD 3870 X2 will come down to more reasonable levels, but at the moment it doesn't make a lot of sense. Time will tell how expensive the GeForce 9800 GX2 from Nvidia will be, but if it ends up costing more than about €550, then it'll be another overpriced dual GPU card.
Let's hope people vote with their wallets and their heads this time around, as although there's no doubt that there is a market for these type of cards, they're currently too expensive considering that there is no real performance advantage compared to using a pair of cards in CrossFire or SLI.