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GeForce 8800 GTX vs Radeon HD 3870 X2 1GB

Intro

The GeForce 8800 GTX has core speeds of 575 MHz on the GPU, and 900 MHz on the 768 MB of GDDR3 memory. It features 128 SPUs as well as 64 Texture Address Units and 24 Rasterization Operator Units.

Compare all of that to the Radeon HD 3870 X2 1GB, which has a core clock speed of 825 MHz and a GDDR4 memory speed of 1126 MHz. It also makes use of a 256-bit bus, and makes use of a 55 nm design. It is made up of 320(64x5) SPUs, 16 TAUs, and 16 Raster Operation Units.

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Power Usage and Theoretical Benchmarks

Memory Bandwidth

Theoretically, the Radeon HD 3870 X2 1GB should be a lot faster than the GeForce 8800 GTX in general. (explain)

Radeon HD 3870 X2 1GB 144128 MB/sec
GeForce 8800 GTX 86400 MB/sec
Difference: 57728 (67%)

Texel Rate

The GeForce 8800 GTX is much (about 39%) better at anisotropic filtering than the Radeon HD 3870 X2 1GB. (explain)

GeForce 8800 GTX 36800 Mtexels/sec
Radeon HD 3870 X2 1GB 26400 Mtexels/sec
Difference: 10400 (39%)

Pixel Rate

If using a high screen resolution is important to you, then the Radeon HD 3870 X2 1GB is the winner, by a large margin. (explain)

Radeon HD 3870 X2 1GB 26400 Mpixels/sec
GeForce 8800 GTX 13800 Mpixels/sec
Difference: 12600 (91%)

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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GeForce 8800 GTX

Amazon.com

Check prices at:

Radeon HD 3870 X2 1GB

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 GeForce 8800 GTX Radeon HD 3870 X2 1GB
Manufacturer nVidia AMD
Year Nov 2006 Jan 28, 2008
Code Name G80 R680
Memory 768 MB 1024 MB (x2)
Core Speed 575 MHz 825 MHz (x2)
Memory Speed 1800 MHz 2252 MHz (x2)
Power (Max TDP) 155 watts (Unknown) watts
Bandwidth 86400 MB/sec 144128 MB/sec
Texel Rate 36800 Mtexels/sec 26400 Mtexels/sec
Pixel Rate 13800 Mpixels/sec 26400 Mpixels/sec
Unified Shaders 128 320(64x5) (x2)
Texture Mapping Units 64 16 (x2)
Render Output Units 24 16 (x2)
Bus Type GDDR3 GDDR4
Bus Width 384-bit 256-bit (x2)
Fab Process 90 nm 55 nm
Transistors 681 million (Unknown) million
Bus PCIe x16 PCIe 2.0 x16/(internal PCIe 1.1 x16)
DirectX Version DirectX 10 DirectX 10.1
OpenGL Version OpenGL 3.0 OpenGL 3.0

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

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

Pixel Rate: Pixel rate is the maximum amount of pixels the graphics card can possibly write to its local memory per second - measured in millions of pixels per second. The figure is calculated by multiplying the number of Raster Operations Pipelines by the clock 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 quite a few 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

GeForce 8800 GTX

Amazon.com

Check prices at:

Radeon HD 3870 X2 1GB

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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