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Radeon HD 4870 1GB vs Radeon HD 5850

Intro

The Radeon HD 4870 1GB features a GPU core clock speed of 750 MHz, and the 1024 MB of GDDR5 memory is set to run at 900 MHz through a 256-bit bus. It also is made up of 800(160x5) Stream Processors, 40 TAUs, and 16 ROPs.

Compare those specs to the Radeon HD 5850, which has a core clock speed of 725 MHz and a GDDR5 memory frequency of 1000 MHz. It also features a 256-bit memory bus, and uses a 40 nm design. It is made up of 1440(288x5) SPUs, 72 Texture Address Units, and 32 ROPs.

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Power Usage and Theoretical Benchmarks

Power Consumption (Max TDP)

Radeon HD 4870 1GB 150 Watts
Radeon HD 5850 151 Watts
Difference: 1 Watts (1%)

Memory Bandwidth

In theory, the Radeon HD 5850 is 11% faster than the Radeon HD 4870 1GB in general, due to its higher data rate. (explain)

Radeon HD 5850 128000 MB/sec
Radeon HD 4870 1GB 115200 MB/sec
Difference: 12800 (11%)

Texel Rate

The Radeon HD 5850 is a lot (more or less 74%) better at anisotropic filtering than the Radeon HD 4870 1GB. (explain)

Radeon HD 5850 52200 Mtexels/sec
Radeon HD 4870 1GB 30000 Mtexels/sec
Difference: 22200 (74%)

Pixel Rate

If using a high resolution is important to you, then the Radeon HD 5850 is a better choice, by far. (explain)

Radeon HD 5850 23200 Mpixels/sec
Radeon HD 4870 1GB 12000 Mpixels/sec
Difference: 11200 (93%)

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

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Radeon HD 4870 1GB

Amazon.com

Check prices at:

Radeon HD 5850

Amazon.com

Check prices at:

Please note that the price comparisons are based on search keywords - sometimes it might show cards with very similar names that are not exactly the same as the one chosen in the comparison. We do try to filter out the wrong results as best we can, though.

Specifications

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Model Radeon HD 4870 1GB Radeon HD 5850
Manufacturer AMD AMD
Year Jun 25, 2008 September 30, 2009
Code Name RV770 XT Cypress PRO
Memory 1024 MB 1024 MB
Core Speed 750 MHz 725 MHz
Memory Speed 3600 MHz 4000 MHz
Power (Max TDP) 150 watts 151 watts
Bandwidth 115200 MB/sec 128000 MB/sec
Texel Rate 30000 Mtexels/sec 52200 Mtexels/sec
Pixel Rate 12000 Mpixels/sec 23200 Mpixels/sec
Unified Shaders 800(160x5) 1440(288x5)
Texture Mapping Units 40 72
Render Output Units 16 32
Bus Type GDDR5 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: Bandwidth is the maximum amount of data (counted in megabytes per second) that can be moved across the external memory interface within a second. It's calculated by multiplying the interface width by its memory speed. If it uses DDR type memory, it should be multiplied by 2 again. If it uses DDR5, multiply by ANOTHER 2x. The higher the card's memory bandwidth, the better the card will be in general. It especially helps with AA, High Dynamic Range and higher screen resolutions.

Texel Rate: Texel rate is the maximum number of texture map elements (texels) that are applied in one second. This number is calculated by multiplying the total amount of texture units by the core clock 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 most pixels the video card could 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 - also sometimes called Render Output Units) are responsible for filling the screen with pixels (the image). The actual pixel fill rate also depends on lots of other factors, especially the memory bandwidth - the lower the bandwidth is, the lower the potential to reach the maximum fill rate.

Display Prices

Hide Prices

Radeon HD 4870 1GB

Amazon.com

Check prices at:

Radeon HD 5850

Amazon.com

Check prices at:

Please note that the price comparisons are based on search keywords - sometimes it might show cards with very similar names that are not exactly the same as the one chosen in the comparison. We do try to filter out the wrong results as best we can, though.

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