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Sapphire HD5830 & HD5850 Xtreme Edition Review – CrossfireX

Rating: 8.5.

Sapphire have decided to re-release two of AMD's last generation range of cards – the HD5830 and HD5850, but this time around they are offering them with a modified cooler and heavily reduced pricing. When we say heavily reduced, we really do mean it. The HD5850 ‘Xtreme' has been reduced from an original price of £250 to £99 inc vat and the HD5830 ‘Xtreme' from £200 to £80 inc vat.

While it might seem unusual to re-release older hardware Sapphire have built new cards with the last batch of ASIC's from AMD to offer the enthusiast gamer an easily affordable gaming solution. With the price point now less than half the original, will two of these cards make for an ideal CrossfireX system?

Today we will compare them against a wide variety of hardware on the market today, including the new range of cards from both AMD and Nvidia.

Product Sapphire HD5830 Xtreme Sapphire HD5850 Xtreme
Graphics Core Direct X 11 Direct X 11
ROPs 16 32
Core Clock 800mhz 725mhz
Memory Type GDDR5 GDDR5
Memory Clock 1GHZ (4GHZ effective) 1GHZ (4GHZ effective)
Manufacturing Process 40nm 40nm
Memory Bus Width 256bit 256bit

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  1. Interesting idea, but nothing wrong with the 5 series, especially the 5850.

  2. The pricing is insane, who would want a 6790 now?

  3. Well I wasnt expecting this. I wonder if AMD like the idea of their partners releasing older series cards. Maybe its to clear a huge backlog of inventory.

    6790 never really impressed me much, seemed almost identical to 5770. the 5850 at £100 is a no brainer.

  4. I am definitely ordering two 5850s at this price. I never bought them first time around as I was a struggling student. £200 for GTX580 beating performance? yes, please.

  5. holy crap £99 for a brand new modified HD5850? give me this any day over a HD6790!

  6. IT makes sense but I think AMD might not be too happy. Its totally killing their HD6790 launch! to be honest, the HD5850 is a much better card, but as the author says, it was always meant to be sold for £200+ not £100. I can see these cards selling really quick once word get out.

  7. AMD release too many cards, HD5850 had plenty of life in it, if they dropped the price to £120, instead of releasing the HD6790 which is a lesser card.

  8. lol I can see this confusing a lot of people. far too many cards out now, especially if they are rebadging old ones.

    for the public however this is a good deal, but its weird to see new, yet old cards on the market.

  9. I think this is a great idea. I always rated the 5850, for this price there is nothing on the market to touch it. imagine if Sapphire could give it a dual crossfire connector.

    Two if them can beat a GTX580, imagine what four could do for £400? !!

  10. 5830 for £80? wow, I always thought it was decent but MASSIVELY overpriced at £200, for 80 is a steal. I already just bought a new card, but if I hadn’t id be looking at two of these, for sure.

  11. I really liked this review, but im shocked they would put the ‘lesser’ cooler on the higher spec card. was it due to the PCB design on some level? the physical size for instance?

  12. for those who have asked. the cards are available from OCUK – then other stores a week later.

  13. There is nothing wrong with buying older hardware (in particular when old and new are still manufactured in 40nm process). And if you get performance like that at 50% discount when compared to previous value, then it is absolute no-brainer.

    Unless you have multi-display setup and hammering for ultimate performance, 2×5850 will serve you well for many years to come. I never bought original 5850, but at this price point I will certainly consider it over gtx580.

  14. OCUK, blergh. That being said the cheapest 5850 is £108 at the moment, not a hundred 🙁

  15. Yes, it appears the £100 price point has been raised a little. I can only go on what I am told at the time, but its not a huge price increase. I would watch what other stores do next week.

  16. a little mistake on the 15 page with the homefront test “6850” instead of “5850” 😀

  17. Seth : “I really liked this review, but im shocked they would put the ‘lesser’ cooler on the higher spec card. was it due to the PCB design on some level? the physical size for instance?”

    I think it’s simply because 5830 have a 800Mhz GPU frequency and a TDP of 175W, and 5850 have a 725Mhz GPU and a TDP of 151W.

    But why the 5850 is less cadenced than the 5830… i absolutly don’t know, maybe simply a “commercial” thing from AMD…

  18. Thanks www. surprised it was only one. I had to do a ‘find and replace’ for 6850 and 6830 at the end 🙂

  19. very disappointed. trixxx not support xtreme 5850, 5830 voltage over!

  20. Hi, apparently TRIXX 4 does…..

  21. I almost ordered 2×5850 from OCUK, but than I saw similar sales for Asus 6850 in my local shop… so for 20 euros less I have ordered 2×6850 😀

  22. Hi there, just got myself 2 x 5830 mentionned in this test.
    Since I was in a hurry I didn’t look at the package content and was a bit surprised when I discovered no crossfire bridge was included in it, shame on me for jumping on the benchmark pages too fast ^^

    Question is: do I need 1 or 2 crossfire bridges to link these cards ?

    Thx guys :]

  23. Just one is needed …

  24. Thanks, browsed a few forums where some would say one, others would say two.
    Great review btw =)

  25. Hi

    where can I find these cards for sale?. I cant find it anywhere. Has to be in europe at least to the mentioned price.
    Please just mail me an url to a shop with it:
    Many thanks!

  26. @Richard: Sorry to say that you might be disappointed. Sapphire did some special purchases back in March to make this product possible. When the review went live, there were Xtreme cards in the market, but we believe that a fixed number were made. Maybe around 80,000 of the 5850s. If you can’t find one – then they may well have sold out. The 5850 is really similar in terms of performance to a 1GB GTX460, so you might want to consider that around the £100 mark.

  27. I just bought 3 5850 xtreme without seeing that I cannot use 3 5850 xtreme in CrossfireX

    Can I put 2 5850 xtreme with 1 5870 in CrossfireX?