AMD announced its newest high-end graphics card this morning, the dual-chip ATI Radeon HD 5970. Available today for $599, the new high-end card features two clock speed-reduced Radeon HD 5870 GPUs on a single graphics card.
Based on the Radeon HD 5000-series chip design, the new Radeon HD 5970 card has the same features common to AMD's other new 3D cards, including DirectX 11 support, GPU computing via ATI's Stream technology, as well as support for up to three monitors via a technology AMD calls Eyefinity (the six-monitor card is due out "soon," according to AMD).
Unique to the Radeon HD 5970, AMD has budgeted overclocking headroom into the cooling hardware and unlocked the clock speed multipliers for both the GPU and the graphics memory. Included software will let you overclock the card, and AMD has also included multiple fail-safes to prevent overheating or damage to the card or your system.
Overclocked or otherwise, the Radeon HD 5970 performed well in various review from around the Web, taking over as the fastest graphics card currently available. It trumps Nvidia's GeForce GTX 295 on almost every test we found. This isn't a surprise given that Nvidia's top single-chip card fell to the AMD's single-chip Radeon HD 5870 when it debuted last month, but it's particularly interesting because Nvidia's answer, the DirectX 11-based Fermi, isn't due until at least the first quarter of next year (Nvidia teased a preview of Fermi hardware on its Facebook page today).