After a long hiatus, "turbo" buttons seem to be making a slow comeback in the PC industry. Palit is the latest to revive the trend, and it has whipped up a Radeon HD 4870 graphics card with dual BIOSes and a "Smart Switch" on the I/O plate to toggle between them.
As you might expect, one of the BIOSes sets core and memory clocks above AMD's reference specification: from 750MHz to 775MHz for the GPU and from 1.8GHz to 2GHz (4GHz "effective") for the memory. The other BIOS preset sticks to the AMD spec for the GPU clock, but it apparently pushes the memory to a speedier-than-normal 1.9GHz.
Palit has made changes beyond the turbo switch, too. The Radeon HD 4870 Sonic Dual Edition features a heat-pipe-based heatsink design with a big, thermally-controlled fan on the left and a smaller, low-speed fan on the right. Palit has also taken the liberty to complement the card's dual DVI ports with a DisplayPort connector. There's no mention of pricing in the launch press release, but we wouldn't be surprised to see the premium for these features push the card's price tag over $300.
Oh, and in case you were wondering, Palit's trademark cyborg frog appears front and center on the Radeon HD 4870 Sonic Dual Edition box.