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Radeon HD 3870 512MB vs Radeon HD 4550 512MB

Intro

The Radeon HD 3870 512MB comes with a GPU core clock speed of 775 MHz, and the 512 MB of GDDR3 RAM runs at 900 MHz through a 256-bit bus. It also features 320(64x5) Stream Processors, 16 TAUs, and 16 Raster Operation Units.

Compare that to the Radeon HD 4550 512MB, which comes with a clock speed of 600 MHz and a GDDR3 memory speed of 800 MHz. It also makes use of a 64-bit bus, and uses a 55 nm design. It features 80(16x5) SPUs, 8 Texture Address Units, and 4 Raster Operation Units.

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Power Usage and Theoretical Benchmarks

Power Consumption (Max TDP)

Radeon HD 4550 512MB 25 Watts
Radeon HD 3870 512MB 106 Watts
Difference: 81 Watts (324%)

Memory Bandwidth

Theoretically, the Radeon HD 3870 512MB should be much faster than the Radeon HD 4550 512MB in general. (explain)

Radeon HD 3870 512MB 57600 MB/sec
Radeon HD 4550 512MB 12800 MB/sec
Difference: 44800 (350%)

Texel Rate

The Radeon HD 3870 512MB will be much (about 158%) more effective at texture filtering than the Radeon HD 4550 512MB. (explain)

Radeon HD 3870 512MB 12400 Mtexels/sec
Radeon HD 4550 512MB 4800 Mtexels/sec
Difference: 7600 (158%)

Pixel Rate

If running with lots of anti-aliasing is important to you, then the Radeon HD 3870 512MB is superior to the Radeon HD 4550 512MB, by a large margin. (explain)

Radeon HD 3870 512MB 12400 Mpixels/sec
Radeon HD 4550 512MB 2400 Mpixels/sec
Difference: 10000 (417%)

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 3870 512MB

Amazon.com

Check prices at:

Radeon HD 4550 512MB

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 3870 512MB Radeon HD 4550 512MB
Manufacturer AMD AMD
Year Nov 19, 2007 Sep 30, 2008
Code Name RV670 XT RV710
Memory 512 MB 512 MB
Core Speed 775 MHz 600 MHz
Memory Speed 1800 MHz 1600 MHz
Power (Max TDP) 106 watts 25 watts
Bandwidth 57600 MB/sec 12800 MB/sec
Texel Rate 12400 Mtexels/sec 4800 Mtexels/sec
Pixel Rate 12400 Mpixels/sec 2400 Mpixels/sec
Unified Shaders 320(64x5) 80(16x5)
Texture Mapping Units 16 8
Render Output Units 16 4
Bus Type GDDR3 GDDR3
Bus Width 256-bit 64-bit
Fab Process 55 nm 55 nm
Transistors (Unknown) million 242 million
Bus PCIe 2.0 x16/AGP 8x PCIe 2.0 x16
DirectX Version DirectX 10.1 DirectX 10.1
OpenGL Version OpenGL 3.0 OpenGL 3.0

Memory Bandwidth: Bandwidth is the largest amount of information (counted in megabytes per second) that can be transferred over the external memory interface within a second. The number is calculated by multiplying the interface width by the speed of its memory. If it uses DDR type RAM, it must be multiplied by 2 once again. If DDR5, multiply by ANOTHER 2x. The higher the card's memory bandwidth, the faster the card will be in general. It especially helps with anti-aliasing, HDR and high resolutions.

Texel Rate: Texel rate is the maximum texture map elements (texels) that can be applied per second. This is worked out by multiplying the total texture units by the core clock speed of the chip. The higher the texel rate, the better the card will be at texture filtering (anisotropic filtering - AF). It is measured in millions of texels per second.

Pixel Rate: Pixel rate is the maximum amount of pixels the graphics card could possibly record to its local memory in a second - measured in millions of pixels per second. The number is calculated by multiplying the number of ROPs 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 rate is also dependant on lots of other factors, especially the memory bandwidth of the card - the lower the bandwidth is, the lower the potential to reach the maximum fill rate.

Display Prices

Hide Prices

Radeon HD 3870 512MB

Amazon.com

Check prices at:

Radeon HD 4550 512MB

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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