Review: Good performance at a tempting price
Sapphire Radeon HD 6850 1GB GDDR5 hit the market back in October last year and it was one of the first cards from the new AMD`s HD 6000 series. While it sports reference clocks, Sapphire has made a few changes to their design that separates this card from the other reference AMD designs. Note that reference clocks stand at 775MHz for the GPU and 1000MHz (4000MHz effectively) for the memory.
While the name HD 6850 might suggest so, it's not the successor to the HD 5850. The product isn't a straight replacement for the HD 5770 either. Actually AMD brought this product to the market in order to compete with Nvidia's Geforce GTX 460. Taking everything into account, HD 6850 offers a nice bang per buck.It's well worth knowing, though that AMD has officially rebranded its HD 5700 Juniper based graphics cards to Radeon HD 6700 series. It appears that these rebrands are only for OEMs while retail/e-tail is still listing the HD 5700 series cards. The Radeon HD 6750 and the Radeon HD 6770 have the same specs as the HD 5750 and 5770 cards with added support for HDMI 1.4a.
Below you see GPUZ screenshot, confirming the clocks on our Sapphire HD 6850 card as well as the number of shaders (960).
Sapphire HD 6850 card is based on Barts core, which compared to the previous generation offers improvements on the field of tessellation, Eyefinity, video decoding and consumption. UVD engine is now in UVD 3 version; there’s also HDMI 1.4a for 3D Blu-ray as well as two DisplayPort 1.2 outs. The DisplayPorts support MultiStream technology, allowing up to 6 monitors to be used via only two DisplayPorts.