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Radeon HD 4850 512MB vs Radeon HD 7850

Intro

The Radeon HD 4850 512MB features core speeds of 625 MHz on the GPU, and 993 MHz on the 512 MB of GDDR3 memory. It features 800(160x5) SPUs along with 40 TAUs and 16 Rasterization Operator Units.

Compare that to the Radeon HD 7850, which comes with GPU core speed of 860 MHz, and 2048 MB of GDDR5 RAM running at 1200 MHz through a 256-bit bus. It also is comprised of 1024 SPUs, 64 Texture Address Units, and 32 Raster Operation Units.

Display Graphs

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Power Usage and Theoretical Benchmarks

Power Consumption (Max TDP)

Radeon HD 4850 512MB 110 Watts
Radeon HD 7850 130 Watts
Difference: 20 Watts (18%)

Memory Bandwidth

In theory, the Radeon HD 7850 should be 142% faster than the Radeon HD 4850 512MB in general, due to its greater data rate. (explain)

Radeon HD 7850 153600 MB/sec
Radeon HD 4850 512MB 63552 MB/sec
Difference: 90048 (142%)

Texel Rate

The Radeon HD 7850 will be a lot (approximately 120%) more effective at AF than the Radeon HD 4850 512MB. (explain)

Radeon HD 7850 55040 Mtexels/sec
Radeon HD 4850 512MB 25000 Mtexels/sec
Difference: 30040 (120%)

Pixel Rate

The Radeon HD 7850 should be much (about 175%) faster with regards to full screen anti-aliasing than the Radeon HD 4850 512MB, and also capable of handling higher resolutions without losing too much performance. (explain)

Radeon HD 7850 27520 Mpixels/sec
Radeon HD 4850 512MB 10000 Mpixels/sec
Difference: 17520 (175%)

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 4850 512MB

Amazon.com

Radeon HD 7850

Amazon.com

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 4850 512MB Radeon HD 7850
Manufacturer AMD AMD
Year Jun 25, 2008 March 2012
Code Name RV770 PRO Pitcairn Pro
Memory 512 MB 2048 MB
Core Speed 625 MHz 860 MHz
Memory Speed 1986 MHz 4800 MHz
Power (Max TDP) 110 watts 130 watts
Bandwidth 63552 MB/sec 153600 MB/sec
Texel Rate 25000 Mtexels/sec 55040 Mtexels/sec
Pixel Rate 10000 Mpixels/sec 27520 Mpixels/sec
Unified Shaders 800(160x5) 1024
Texture Mapping Units 40 64
Render Output Units 16 32
Bus Type GDDR3 GDDR5
Bus Width 256-bit 256-bit
Fab Process 55 nm 28 nm
Transistors 956 million 2800 million
Bus PCIe 2.0 x16 PCIe 3.0 x16
DirectX Version DirectX 10.1 DirectX 11.1
OpenGL Version OpenGL 3.0 OpenGL 4.2

Memory Bandwidth: Memory bandwidth is the max amount of information (in units of MB per second) that can be transported over the external memory interface within a second. It is worked out by multiplying the bus width by the speed of its memory. If the card has DDR type memory, the result should be multiplied by 2 once again. If DDR5, multiply by ANOTHER 2x. The higher the bandwidth is, the faster the card will be in general. It especially helps with anti-aliasing, High Dynamic Range and high resolutions.

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

Pixel Rate: Pixel rate is the most pixels that the graphics card can possibly record to the local memory in a second - measured in millions of pixels per second. The number is worked out by multiplying the number of colour ROPs by the the card's clock speed. ROPs (Raster Operations Pipelines - aka Render Output Units) are responsible for outputting the pixels (image) to the screen. The actual pixel rate is also dependant on lots of other factors, most notably the memory bandwidth - the lower the bandwidth is, the lower the ability to get to the maximum fill rate.

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