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Radeon HD 3870 X2 1GB vs Radeon HD 4890 2GB

Intro

The Radeon HD 3870 X2 1GB comes with core speeds of 825 MHz on the GPU, and 1126 MHz on the 1024 MB of GDDR4 memory. It features 320(64x5) SPUs along with 16 Texture Address Units and 16 ROPs.

Compare that to the Radeon HD 4890 2GB, which makes use of a 55 nm design. AMD has clocked the core frequency at 1000 MHz. The GDDR5 memory works at a speed of 975 MHz on this specific model. It features 800(160x5) SPUs as well as 40 TAUs and 16 Rasterization Operator Units.

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Power Usage and Theoretical Benchmarks

Memory Bandwidth

Performance-wise, the Radeon HD 3870 X2 1GB should theoretically be a bit superior to the Radeon HD 4890 2GB in general. (explain)

Radeon HD 3870 X2 1GB 144128 MB/sec
Radeon HD 4890 2GB 124800 MB/sec
Difference: 19328 (15%)

Texel Rate

The Radeon HD 4890 2GB should be a lot (about 52%) more effective at AF than the Radeon HD 3870 X2 1GB. (explain)

Radeon HD 4890 2GB 40000 Mtexels/sec
Radeon HD 3870 X2 1GB 26400 Mtexels/sec
Difference: 13600 (52%)

Pixel Rate

The Radeon HD 3870 X2 1GB will be a lot (more or less 65%) better at FSAA than the Radeon HD 4890 2GB, and able to handle higher screen resolutions better. (explain)

Radeon HD 3870 X2 1GB 26400 Mpixels/sec
Radeon HD 4890 2GB 16000 Mpixels/sec
Difference: 10400 (65%)

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 3870 X2 1GB

Amazon.com

Check prices at:

Radeon HD 4890 2GB

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 X2 1GB Radeon HD 4890 2GB
Manufacturer AMD AMD
Year Jan 28, 2008 Apr 2, 2009
Code Name R680 RV790 XT
Memory 1024 MB (x2) 2048 MB
Core Speed 825 MHz (x2) 1000 MHz
Memory Speed 2252 MHz (x2) 3900 MHz
Power (Max TDP) (Unknown) watts 190 watts
Bandwidth 144128 MB/sec 124800 MB/sec
Texel Rate 26400 Mtexels/sec 40000 Mtexels/sec
Pixel Rate 26400 Mpixels/sec 16000 Mpixels/sec
Unified Shaders 320(64x5) (x2) 800(160x5)
Texture Mapping Units 16 (x2) 40
Render Output Units 16 (x2) 16
Bus Type GDDR4 GDDR5
Bus Width 256-bit (x2) 256-bit
Fab Process 55 nm 55 nm
Transistors (Unknown) million 959 million
Bus PCIe 2.0 x16/(internal PCIe 1.1 x16) 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 maximum amount of information (in units of MB per second) that can be transported past the external memory interface in one second. The number is worked out by multiplying the interface width by the speed of its memory. If the card has DDR type memory, it must be multiplied by 2 once again. If DDR5, multiply by 4 instead. The higher the memory bandwidth, the faster the card will be in general. It especially helps with anti-aliasing, HDR and higher screen resolutions.

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

Pixel Rate: Pixel rate is the maximum number of pixels that the graphics card could possibly write to the local memory in one second - measured in millions of pixels per second. The figure is calculated by multiplying the number of Render Output Units by the the core speed of the card. ROPs (Raster Operations Pipelines - sometimes also referred to as Render Output Units) are responsible for filling the screen with pixels (the image). The actual pixel rate is also dependant on many other factors, most notably the memory bandwidth - the lower the bandwidth is, the lower the ability to reach the maximum fill rate.

Display Prices

Hide Prices

Radeon HD 3870 X2 1GB

Amazon.com

Check prices at:

Radeon HD 4890 2GB

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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