AMD ATI Radeon HD 5770 and HD 5750 Review

Performance on a budget! That is what AMD is bringing you today with the launch of the ATI Radeon HD 5700 series. The new HD 5750 and HD 5770 are priced to sell, but don’t skimp on gaming performance, all while staying cool and power efficient. We have also added Resident Evil 5 and Batman: AA to our gameplay testing.

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Overclocking

Note: These overclocking results may not represent the abilities of retail video cards since these are engineering samples.

We utilized Overdrive in Catalyst Control Center to overclock the ATI Radeon HD 5770 and ATI Radeon HD 5750. Overdrive does provide some limitations for highest available frequencies. With the Radeon HD 5770 the highest possible setting the slider will go up to is 960MHz. The highest memory value possible is 1445MHz. That may be plenty for the memory since that would yield 5.78GHz, which was not possible on our overclock. However, the core frequency might have more room for overclocking.

The ATI Radeon HD 5750’s highest value possible in Overdrive is 870MHz, which we came close to in our overclocking. The memory frequency available goes up to 1430MHz, which would be 5.72GHz, again, beyond the scope of our memory modules.

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The Radeon HD 5770 overclocked easily up to 960MHz core frequency. We feel there is still some room here to go higher, however, our GPU temps at this frequency were quite high. With better cooling we think higher frequencies might be possible. The memory overclocked to an astonishing 5.6GHz, well over the rated 5GHz of these modules. That overclock gave us a memory bandwidth increase to 89.6GB/sec, compared to the default 76.8GB/sec. If overclocks like this continue on retail video cards, those worries about memory bandwidth may subside.

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Relatively speaking the Radeon HD 5750 did quite well on overclocking, managing to hit 850MHz core frequency; a 150MHz overclock. Though we couldn’t reach frequencies near the HD 5770, we did manage to overclock it higher from its base clock speed than the HD 5770. Perhaps with better cooling and voltage tweaking we might see overclocks into the 900MHz range with this video card.

The memory overclock was also exceptional, allowing us to achieve 5.54GHz, well over the rated 5GHz of the memory modules. This brings our memory bandwidth up to 88.6GB/sec from 73.6GB/sec. Since this video card already thoroughly beat the Radeon HD 4770 at its base clocks, this increase in core and memory must absolutely blow it away.


Power Testing

We tested the power utilization at the wall of the entire system without a video card, and with each video card at idle and full load. For full load power and temperature testing we used FurMark version 1.7.0 to stress each video card at the highest load. We found 2560x1600 to be the sweet spot for stressing the GPUs without bottlenecking them. The power supply used in testing is a PC Power & Cooling Turbo-Cool 1200W. Our system is very lean with only one optical drive and one hard drive being powered. Total system wattage at idle without video card is 165W.

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The ATI Radeon HD 5770 and ATI Radeon HD 5750 are definitely power efficient. AMD/ATI has certainly worked on the power management part of these video cards. Idle wattage on the Radeon HD 5770 is 187W; idle wattage on the Radeon HD 5750 is 184W. Our total system wattage without the video card is 165W, which means our video cards are adding around 20 more Watts of power, which is the lowest idle power usage we have seen to date with cards this fast. Even the Idle Wattage on the Radeon HD 4770 is quite high for a 40nm GPU at 208W. The Radeon HD 5750 and HD 5770 certainly lower system Idle Wattage.

What’s more impressive is the full load Wattage; the Radeon HD 5770 pulls 302W total system Wattage, and the Radeon HD 5750 pulls 268W total system Wattage. For comparison, the Radeon HD 4870 1GB pulls a whopping 370W total system Wattage. The Radeon HD 4770 pulls 282W total system Wattage. Since we discovered that the Radeon HD 5750 is a lot faster than the Radeon HD 4770 we can see that it is able to beat that card in performance and do so pulling 14W less! These Wattage results are impressive to say the least.


Temperature Testing

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Not surprisingly, the idle temperatures on the Radeon HD 5750 are quite low; 36c in comparison to the Radeon HD 4770 is very cool. The idle temperature on the Radeon HD 5770 was slightly higher than we thought it would be. It matches the idle temperature of the GeForce GTS 250, but it is cooler than the Radeon HD 4770 and Radeon HD 4870 1GB by a long shot.

The ATI Radeon HD 5750 had the lowest full load temperature at 77c. Funky looking or not, that fan seems to be cooling the video card down quite well. The Radeon HD 5770 pulled in a high 85c, which is still lower than the Radeon HD 4870 1GB, but higher than everything else. As you can see, our temperature overclocked shot up to a high 89c. This is higher than we would like to see over a long period of use overclocked. We suggest very good airflow in your case, or possibly better cooling that we hope add-in-board partners will create for the HD 5770 to allow better overclocking temperatures.

Fan Noise

What fan noise? Seriously, if you can hear the fans of the Radeon HD 5750 or Radeon HD 5770 you must have Spock ears. They performed quietly for us, never reaching volumes over our one 120mm fan on the side or the CPU fan, even during full GPU loads.