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GeForce 9800 GT 512MB vs Radeon HD 3850 X2

Intro

The GeForce 9800 GT 512MB features clock speeds of 600 MHz on the GPU, and 900 MHz on the 512 MB of GDDR3 RAM. It features 112 SPUs as well as 56 Texture Address Units and 16 Rasterization Operator Units.

Compare those specs to the Radeon HD 3850 X2, which has a core clock frequency of 668 MHz and a GDDR3 memory frequency of 828 MHz. It also uses a 256-bit bus, and uses a 55 nm design. It features 320(64x5) SPUs, 16 Texture Address Units, and 16 ROPs.

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Power Usage and Theoretical Benchmarks

Memory Bandwidth

Theoretically speaking, the Radeon HD 3850 X2 should be 84% quicker than the GeForce 9800 GT 512MB overall, because of its higher bandwidth. (explain)

Radeon HD 3850 X2 105984 MB/sec
GeForce 9800 GT 512MB 57600 MB/sec
Difference: 48384 (84%)

Texel Rate

The GeForce 9800 GT 512MB should be much (approximately 57%) more effective at anisotropic filtering than the Radeon HD 3850 X2. (explain)

GeForce 9800 GT 512MB 33600 Mtexels/sec
Radeon HD 3850 X2 21376 Mtexels/sec
Difference: 12224 (57%)

Pixel Rate

If using lots of anti-aliasing is important to you, then the Radeon HD 3850 X2 is the winner, by far. (explain)

Radeon HD 3850 X2 21376 Mpixels/sec
GeForce 9800 GT 512MB 9600 Mpixels/sec
Difference: 11776 (123%)

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 9800 GT 512MB

Amazon.com

Check prices at:

Radeon HD 3850 X2

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 9800 GT 512MB Radeon HD 3850 X2
Manufacturer nVidia AMD
Year July 2008 Apr 4, 2008
Code Name G92a/b RV670 PRO
Memory 512 MB 512 MB (x2)
Core Speed 600 MHz 668 MHz (x2)
Memory Speed 1800 MHz 1656 MHz (x2)
Power (Max TDP) 105 watts (Unknown) watts
Bandwidth 57600 MB/sec 105984 MB/sec
Texel Rate 33600 Mtexels/sec 21376 Mtexels/sec
Pixel Rate 9600 Mpixels/sec 21376 Mpixels/sec
Unified Shaders 112 320(64x5) (x2)
Texture Mapping Units 56 16 (x2)
Render Output Units 16 16 (x2)
Bus Type GDDR3 GDDR3
Bus Width 256-bit 256-bit (x2)
Fab Process 65/55 nm 55 nm
Transistors 754 million (Unknown) million
Bus PCIe x16 2.0 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: Bandwidth is the largest amount of information (measured in megabytes per second) that can be transported past the external memory interface in a second. The number is worked out by multiplying the interface width by the speed of its memory. In the case of DDR memory, the result should be multiplied by 2 once again. If DDR5, multiply by 4 instead. The better the bandwidth is, 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 worked out by multiplying the total number of texture units of the card by the core speed of the chip. The higher this number, the better the 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 most pixels the graphics card could possibly write to the local memory in one second - measured in millions of pixels per second. Pixel rate is calculated by multiplying the amount of Raster Operations Pipelines by the the card's clock speed. ROPs (Raster Operations Pipelines - sometimes also referred to as Render Output Units) are responsible for outputting the pixels (image) to the screen. The actual pixel rate also depends on quite a few other factors, especially the memory bandwidth of the card - the lower the bandwidth is, the lower the ability to reach the maximum fill rate.

Display Prices

Hide Prices

GeForce 9800 GT 512MB

Amazon.com

Check prices at:

Radeon HD 3850 X2

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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