RIP ATi Sapphire 4870 2008-2012

If you want the story:

Working on uni stuff 'all' day (in between endless web breaks etc), gets to 11pm so I decide to play some CSS. Two rounds in and sudden graphical glitch + system lockup. Could also smell faint 'burnt electronics' smell but could've been my imagination. Reboot, lines all over the screen (even on post). Go into safe mode, seems fine except the lines (several vertical columns). Reboot, lines gone, open up CCC and  drag it to my 2nd screen, locks up. Sigh. Shut down, retire to the laptop. I'll try again in the morning but looks like I need a new GPU.

Temps haven't really been a problem, I've had one or two issues with this GPU before (reseating / cleaning tips fixed it) so I guess it's finally given up the ghost.

My specs:

i5 2500k

Gigabyte GA-z68x-ud3r-b3

Obviously I'm a pretty big gamer but I don't need the biggest and baddest GPU. My 4870 lasted me four years, although I'm lucky that consoles have been holding back advancement in this regard. Whats the word on linux compatability with the latest ATi cards? (AMD even..) Wasn't brilliant with my 4870 for memory. Not a huge concern but it'd be a nice bonus. I use a few 3d applications heavily but these don't have any specific gpu requirements.

Budget is ~200 aud. Any tips or suggestions would be great. My brother told me that there is going to be a change in how bitcoin mining works and that because of this there would be a lot of second hand cards coming around december. Any info on this? Would I even want a card that's been tortured and is warantyless?

So my current replacment pick is the Sapphire 7850 for $210 (225 for OC version) AUD. Thoughts? Worth considering nvidia? I bet my SSD will be dead in the morning too..


edit: On the upside, I have a new coaster..

I would check out the 7870

I'll read 7850/70 comparisons tomorrow to see if it's worth the extra $40, thanks!


I've been reading in to the 7870, and there's an article worth reading if you're planning on buying one:

tl;dr, early versions had shit capacitors that were causing black screens, check what version you're buying beforehand to save hassle.