People don't usually get excited about mainstream and low end graphics cards, but they nonetheless represent the largest part of the market and thus one that simply can't be ignored. With this in mind AMD is releasing a new round of mainstream graphics cards that should fall in the sub-$80 range, setting a low price for performance and hoping to beat Nvidia's GeForce 9500 cards.

The new Radeon HD 4600 series is basically a watered-down version of the high-end 4800 series that launched a while back. The initial line-up comprises the 4650 and 4670, each packing in 320 unified shader cores and built using 55nm process technology. As you might expect, these cards also include support for DirectX 10.1 and Shader Model 4.1, ATI's CrossFireX multi-GPU technology, enhanced HD multimedia capabilities and good performance-per-watt.

The basic Radeon HD 4650 is estimated to cost as little as $69 and does so by using 512MB of GDDR2, whereas the Radeon HD 4670 is only slightly more expensive at $79 and switches to faster GDDR3 memory.