ATI Radeon HD 4200
The AMD ATI (Mobility) Radeon HD 4200 is an onboard (shared Memory) graphics chip (on the RS880M chipset). It is based on the HD 3400 graphics core and features the UVD 2 video engine to decode HD videos.
Compared to the old HD 3200, the 4200 now supports DirectX 10.1 and features the UVD2 video decoder. The later announced Radeon HD 4250 is just a higher clocked version of the HD 4200.
Hybrid CrossfireX is a new feature of the chipset, that allowes to use the onboard HD 4200 graphics core in conjunction with a dedicated graphics card (of the Mobilty Radeon HD 3400 series) in Crossfire combination to increase the performance (similar to GeForceBoost / HybridSLI of Nvidia). Every frame is rendered by a different graphics core with this technique.
The UVD 2 video engine is able to decode HD videos (H.264 and VC-1 in all stages, MPEG-2 only IDCT) and allows the fluent playback of HD videos (e.g. Blu-ray) with a relative low CPU utilization (called Avivo HD). The HD 3200 was the first onboard graphics card that allows the fluent playback of Blu-ray videos. The UVD 2 on the HD 4200 supports the decoding of two video stream and therefore got a full Blu-Ray support.
The graphics core of the HD 4200 stems from the Mobility Radeon HD 3400 and is therefore DirectX 10.1 capable. Because of the missing graphics memory, the performance of the card is a bit lower than of the HD 3400. Theroretically, dedicated memory chips can be directly added to the chip, making it a dedicated graphics card. Because of pricing it is unclear if any manufacturer will add memory to the chip.
Still older games like Doom 3 or Quake 4 should be barly playable. Compared to older onboad graphic chips (e.g., GMA X3100), the HD 4200 is much faster. Even the Centrino 2 graphics core (GMA 4500M HD) is noticeable slower than the HD 4200. Compared to the HD 3200 the performance should be similar
Using Windows XP, the HD 3200 seems to have problems with current and older drivers, as there is no 2D accelleration. This leads to very slow interactions with windows and scrolling (especially with Firefox as reported in various discussion boards). More information on the topic can be found at Planet 3D Now (de) or the AMD forum. It is still unclear if the HD 4200 also suffers from this problem.
|Radeon HD 4000 Series|
|Pipelines||40 - unified|
|Core Speed||500 MHz|
|Max. Amount of Memory||512 MB|
|DirectX||DirectX 10.1, Shader 4.0|
|Features||Avivo HD (UVD 2), PCI-E 2.0, Vari-Bright, HDCP support, Display Cache|
|Date of Announcement||10.09.2009|