HD4830 and HD4770 in Crossfire – A Worthy Setup?

HD4830 and HD4770 in Crossfire - A Worthy Setup?

I got curious on how Crossfired low-end card stack against single card solutions, so I ordered a few HD4830 and HD4770 to see for myself (first hand experience!) instead of just reading it from other sites.

What Is CrossfireX

ATI CrossFireX™ is the ultimate multi-GPU performance gaming platform. Enabling game-dominating power, ATI CrossFireX technology enables two or more discrete graphics processors to work together to improve system performance. For The Ultimate Visual Experience™, be sure to select ATI CrossFireX ready motherboards for AMD and Intel® processors and multiple ATI Radeon™ HD graphics cards.

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Test Setup

In this article, I’ll pit the HD4770 and HD4830 in Crossfire mode against the HD4890. Here’s the computer setup used.

Processor Intel Coreâ„¢2 Duo E7200 @ 3.6ghz
RAM Kingston HyperX 4GB Dual-channel Kit
Motherboard Jetway X-Blue P45
Cooler Sunbeamtech Core-Contact Freezer Heatsink 92mm
Monitor 20″ Dell Ultra-sharp Wide-screen LCD
Power Supply Gigabyte Odin GT 550w
Operating System Windows Vista Home Basic 32bit
Driver Version ATi Catalyst 9.4

In Crossfire mode, the cards run at x8 / x8 for of the PCI-E slot the cards are using.

Cards used are the
Sapphire HD4830 (OCed version)
HD4830 and HD4770 in Crossfire - A Worthy Setup? 1

Sapphire HD4770
HD4830 and HD4770 in Crossfire - A Worthy Setup? 2

Gigabyte HD4890
HD4830 and HD4770 in Crossfire - A Worthy Setup? 3

Performance Comparison

World In Conflict

Graphic Detail : Maximum @ 1680×1050

Card Average
HD4830 single 25
HD4770 single 21
HD4830 Crossfire 38
HD4770 Crossfire 34
HD4890 Single 35

Company Of Heroes : Opposing Fronts

Graphic Detail : Maximum @ 1680×1050

Card Average
HD4830 single 39.4
HD4770 single 46.9
HD4830 Crossfire 56.4
HD4770 Crossfire 49.7
HD4890 55.9

Lost Planet : Extreme Condition

Graphic Detail : Maximum at 1680 x 946

Card Snow (Average) Cave (Average)
HD4830 single 42.4 54.0
HD4770 single 37.6 48.2
HD4830 Crossfire 73.6 63.7
HD4770 Crossfire 75.4 57.8
HD4890 Single 64.6 60.6

Crysis

Graphic Detail : Maximum @ 1680×1050

Card Average
HD4830 single 13.62
HD4770 single 12.87
HD4830 Crossfire 21.83
HD4770 Crossfire 21.45
HD4890 Single 22.21

H.A.W.X.

Graphic Detail : Maximum @ 1680×1050, not using DX10.1 for mode.

Card Average
HD4830 single 35
HD4770 single 38
HD4830 Crossfire 59
HD4770 Crossfire 56
HD4890 Single 52

Furmark

Graphic Detail : Maximum @ 1680×1050

Card Average
HD4830 single 26
HD4770 single 20
HD4830 Crossfire 47
HD4770 Crossfire 40
HD4890 Single 42

Power Consumption

Please note that the numbers below indicate the wattage for the entire system, not the graphic card alone.

System Power Consumption Idle (w) Load (w)
HD4830 single 44 206
HD4830 Crossfire N/A N/A
HD4770 single 56 121
HD4770 Crossfire 84 192
HD4890 Single 90 266

Readings taken with Gigabyte’s P-Tuner software.

Sorry, no readings for HD4830 as one of the card went bonkers before I get to take the power consumption readings. RMA took a long time, the HD4830 never met one another after that.

My Thoughts

Clearly CrossFireX technology is no slouch. As you can see from the benchmarks, it’s clear that Crossfired ATI cards perform well. Take for example the HD4830, I sold my units for only RM 300 or so and they’re performing just as good as the HD4890 card, usually retailing at around RM 850.

So if you’re looking to cut cost, a new P45 board with Crossfire capability could be acquired for as low as RM 310 and couple that with 2 units of used HD4830, add a CrossfireX cable to it and overall cost comes to a little over RM 900. For a HD4890 setup to reach that price level, you’ll need to hunt for a used unit and settle for a low-end board, usually comes with onboard graphic card (eg, the G31 boards) but lacks in many features, such as the limited DIMM slots and lack of overclocking ability.

Does that mean CrossfireX is the way to go? Not necessarily so, the above example is for NEW setup. If you already have a system with single PCI-E x16 slot, there’s no reason to change to a crossfire motherboard as there’s always a single-card solution, it’s a more cost-effective and less hassle solution.

Another thing to take note of is the power consumption. While the Crossfire setup takes a little more effort, using lower-end graphic card does help in reducing power consumption while attaining similar or better performance.

Now if only I could find a few HD4670 to crossfire to add to the articles. 🙂

*Disclaimer : The tests were done in 1680×1050 resolution, the performance difference between these cards will vary depending on resolution and chipset, eg. x38 / x48 / x58 chipset with x16 / x16 crossfire setup would allow some boost in performance. The article is also referring to HD4830 / HD4770 cards in Crossfire setup only. SLI setup does not necessarly perform the same either, so don’t quote this article for any of your SLI debates. kthxbye).

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7 Comments

  1. Hmm, the 4770 Crossfire performed quite disappointingly compared to 4830. But it’s nice to see how much power is saved when 4770 is used. =)

  2. Whoah i’m amazed. Crossfire two 4830 draws less power and perform as good as 4890! Its cheaper somemore!

  3. Means getting 4830 CF is much better than His 4850 TurboX? Is it true?

  4. Hi I’m Justin I’m new to blogging just like to say I like your site plan to come back.

  5. thx goldfries for the review…i amaze at what cf 4830 can do…

  6. sir…can u pls guess the max power consumption for 4830 cf? i want to cf my setup
    and, is there any performance gain if cf 4830+4830 compare 4830+4850?
    thanks

  7. Author

    darn, missed out on the comments –

    @kuntawakaw – sorry don’t have. had some complications. 😀 btw CF 4830+4850 will work like CF 4830+4830. It will run based on the slower card.

    @XiuKeong – as you can see, HD4830 is as good as a HD4890 already. 😀 so yeah, beats the HD4850 like silly. 😀 the HD4830 performs close to the HD4850 in fact.

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