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Radeon HD 4850 X2 1GB vs Radeon HD 4870 X2

Intro

The Radeon HD 4850 X2 1GB has a GPU clock speed of 625 MHz, and the 1024 MB of GDDR3 memory is set to run at 993 MHz through a 256-bit bus. It also is comprised of 800(160x5) SPUs, 40 TAUs, and 16 Raster Operation Units.

Compare those specs to the Radeon HD 4870 X2, which uses a 55 nm design. AMD has set the core speed at 750 MHz. The GDDR5 memory runs at a frequency of 900 MHz on this particular model. It features 800(160x5) SPUs along with 40 TAUs and 16 ROPs.

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Power Usage and Theoretical Benchmarks

Power Consumption (Max TDP)

Radeon HD 4850 X2 1GB 250 Watts
Radeon HD 4870 X2 350 Watts
Difference: 100 Watts (40%)

Memory Bandwidth

As far as performance goes, the Radeon HD 4870 X2 should theoretically be much superior to the Radeon HD 4850 X2 1GB overall. (explain)

Radeon HD 4870 X2 230400 MB/sec
Radeon HD 4850 X2 1GB 127104 MB/sec
Difference: 103296 (81%)

Texel Rate

The Radeon HD 4870 X2 should be just a bit (about 20%) better at AF than the Radeon HD 4850 X2 1GB. (explain)

Radeon HD 4870 X2 60000 Mtexels/sec
Radeon HD 4850 X2 1GB 50000 Mtexels/sec
Difference: 10000 (20%)

Pixel Rate

If running with a high screen resolution is important to you, then the Radeon HD 4870 X2 is the winner, not by a very large margin though. (explain)

Radeon HD 4870 X2 24000 Mpixels/sec
Radeon HD 4850 X2 1GB 20000 Mpixels/sec
Difference: 4000 (20%)

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.

One or more cards in this comparison are multi-core. This means that their bandwidth, texel and pixel rates are theoretically doubled - this does not mean the card will actually perform twice as fast, but only that it should in theory be able to. Actual game benchmarks will give a more accurate idea of what it's capable of.

Price Comparison

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Radeon HD 4850 X2 1GB

Amazon.com

Radeon HD 4870 X2

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 X2 1GB Radeon HD 4870 X2
Manufacturer AMD AMD
Year Nov 7, 2008 Aug 12, 2008
Code Name R700 R700
Memory 1024 MB (x2) 1024 MB (x2)
Core Speed 625 MHz (x2) 750 MHz (x2)
Memory Speed 1986 MHz (x2) 3600 MHz (x2)
Power (Max TDP) 250 watts 350 watts
Bandwidth 127104 MB/sec 230400 MB/sec
Texel Rate 50000 Mtexels/sec 60000 Mtexels/sec
Pixel Rate 20000 Mpixels/sec 24000 Mpixels/sec
Unified Shaders 800(160x5) (x2) 800(160x5) (x2)
Texture Mapping Units 40 (x2) 40 (x2)
Render Output Units 16 (x2) 16 (x2)
Bus Type GDDR3 GDDR5
Bus Width 256-bit (x2) 256-bit (x2)
Fab Process 55 nm 55 nm
Transistors 956 million 956 million
Bus PCIe 2.0 x16 (PCIe bridge) PCIe 2.0 x16 (PCIe bridge)
DirectX Version DirectX 10.1 DirectX 10.1
OpenGL Version OpenGL 3.0 OpenGL 3.0

Memory Bandwidth: Bandwidth is the max amount of information (in units of MB per second) that can be moved over the external memory interface within a second. It is calculated by multiplying the card's interface width by the speed of its memory. In the case of DDR type memory, it should be multiplied by 2 once again. If it uses DDR5, multiply by ANOTHER 2x. 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 number of texture map elements (texels) that are processed in one second. This number is worked out by multiplying the total amount of texture units of the card by the core clock speed of the chip. The higher the texel rate, the better the graphics card will be at handling texture filtering (anisotropic filtering - AF). It is measured in millions of texels applied in one second.

Pixel Rate: Pixel rate is the most pixels that the graphics chip can possibly record to its local memory in a second - measured in millions of pixels per second. The figure is calculated by multiplying the number of ROPs by the the card's clock speed. ROPs (Raster Operations Pipelines - also called Render Output Units) are responsible for filling the screen with pixels (the image). The actual pixel output rate also depends on many 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.

Display Prices

Hide Prices

Radeon HD 4850 X2 1GB

Amazon.com

Radeon HD 4870 X2

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.

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