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Radeon HD 4850 1GB vs Radeon HD 5870


Intro

The Radeon HD 4850 1GB comes with core clock speeds of 625 MHz on the GPU, and 993 MHz on the 1024 MB of GDDR4 memory. It features 800(160x5) SPUs as well as 40 TAUs and 16 ROPs.

Compare that to the Radeon HD 5870, which comes with a clock speed of 850 MHz and a GDDR5 memory frequency of 1200 MHz. It also uses a 256-bit memory bus, and makes use of a 40 nm design. It features 1600(320x5) SPUs, 80 Texture Address Units, and 32 ROPs.

Display Graphs

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Power Usage and Theoretical Benchmarks

Power Consumption (Max TDP)

Radeon HD 4850 1GB 110 Watts
Radeon HD 5870 188 Watts
Difference: 78 Watts (71%)

Memory Bandwidth

Theoretically speaking, the Radeon HD 5870 should perform quite a bit faster than the Radeon HD 4850 1GB overall. (explain)

Radeon HD 5870 153600 MB/sec
Radeon HD 4850 1GB 63552 MB/sec
Difference: 90048 (142%)

Texel Rate

The Radeon HD 5870 is a lot (more or less 172%) more effective at AF than the Radeon HD 4850 1GB. (explain)

Radeon HD 5870 68000 Mtexels/sec
Radeon HD 4850 1GB 25000 Mtexels/sec
Difference: 43000 (172%)

Pixel Rate

If running with lots of anti-aliasing is important to you, then the Radeon HD 5870 is a better choice, by a large margin. (explain)

Radeon HD 5870 27200 Mpixels/sec
Radeon HD 4850 1GB 10000 Mpixels/sec
Difference: 17200 (172%)

Please note that the above 'benchmarks' are all just theoretical - the results were calculated based on the card's specifications, and real-world performance may (and probably will) vary at least a bit.

Price Comparison

Radeon HD 4850 1GB

Radeon HD 5870

Specifications

Display Specifications

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Model Radeon HD 4850 1GB Radeon HD 5870
Manufacturer AMD AMD
Year Jun 25, 2008 September 23, 2009
Code Name RV770 PRO Cypress XT
Memory 1024 MB 1024 MB
Core Speed 625 MHz 850 MHz
Memory Speed 1986 MHz 4800 MHz
Power (Max TDP) 110 watts 188 watts
Bandwidth 63552 MB/sec 153600 MB/sec
Texel Rate 25000 Mtexels/sec 68000 Mtexels/sec
Pixel Rate 10000 Mpixels/sec 27200 Mpixels/sec
Unified Shaders 800(160x5) 1600(320x5)
Texture Mapping Units 40 80
Render Output Units 16 32
Bus Type GDDR4 GDDR5
Bus Width 256-bit 256-bit
Fab Process 55 nm 40 nm
Transistors 956 million 2154 million
Bus PCIe 2.0 x16 PCIe 2.1 x16
DirectX Version DirectX 10.1 DirectX 11
OpenGL Version OpenGL 3.0 OpenGL 3.2

Memory Bandwidth: Memory bandwidth is the max amount of information (measured in megabytes per second) that can be moved across the external memory interface within a second. It's calculated by multiplying the card's interface width by its memory speed. If it uses DDR memory, the result should be multiplied by 2 again. If it uses DDR5, multiply by 4 instead. The better the bandwidth is, the better the card will be in general. It especially helps with AA, High Dynamic Range and high resolutions.

Texel Rate: Texel rate is the maximum amount of texture map elements (texels) that can be applied in one second. This is calculated by multiplying the total number of texture units by the core speed of the chip. The better this number, the better the graphics card will be at texture filtering (anisotropic filtering - AF). It is measured in millions of texels processed per second.

Pixel Rate: Pixel rate is the maximum number of pixels the graphics card can possibly record to its local memory in one second - measured in millions of pixels per second. Pixel rate is calculated by multiplying the number of Render Output Units by the the core clock speed. ROPs (Raster Operations Pipelines - sometimes also referred to as Render Output Units) are responsible for outputting the pixels (image) to the screen. The actual pixel fill rate also depends on lots of other factors, most notably the memory bandwidth of the card - the lower the bandwidth is, the lower the ability to get to the maximum fill rate.

Radeon HD 4850 1GB

Radeon HD 5870

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