As the new AMD Vega architecture GPUs approach on the not too distant horizon, Linus and his crew decided to take a strictly historical view of AMD flagship graphics cards , going back as far as the HD 3870 card which first arrived in 2007. What we end up with is a very interesting video that delves into the evolving performance and features of the AMD GPU line up from the last decade… they even went back and benchmarked them all!
The test bed they used was pretty modern, featuring a Haswell-E Core i7 5960X and an ASUS X99E-WS / USB 3.1 motherboard. The benchmarks used involve modern synthetics like Unigine Heaven, plus a bunch of modern and retro 3D gaming titles – giving an interesting historical view of GPU performance over time.
The story kicks off with AMD licking their wounds after Nvidia’s 8000 series cards launched and annihilated them in pure performance terms. AMD’s only strategy was to shrink the die of the previous gen, raise the efficiency, lower the price and tempt gamers with Multi-GPU Crossfire builds. Next on the historical trail we come to the HD4870 in 2008 which built on the strategy of the previous 4000 series by remaining more affordable than comparative green team offerings. Then we arrive at the HD 5870, a card that featured the company’s new Trascale 2 DX11 capable architecture, 2 billion transistors and whole lot of bang for the buck.
Catch the full video here on the LinusTechTips YouTube channel. It’s an interested watch for any older techie like myself who remembers most of these cards.