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GeForce 9800 GX2 vs Radeon HD 4850 512MB

Intro

The GeForce 9800 GX2 makes use of a 65 nm design. nVidia has clocked the core frequency at 600 MHz. The GDDR3 memory works at a speed of 1000 MHz on this particular card. It features 128 SPUs as well as 64 Texture Address Units and 16 Rasterization Operator Units.

Compare those specs to the Radeon HD 4850 512MB, which features a core clock speed of 625 MHz and a GDDR3 memory frequency of 993 MHz. It also makes use of a 256-bit bus, and uses a 55 nm design. It is made up of 800(160x5) SPUs, 40 Texture Address Units, and 16 ROPs.

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Power Usage and Theoretical Benchmarks

Power Consumption (Max TDP)

Radeon HD 4850 512MB 110 Watts
GeForce 9800 GX2 197 Watts
Difference: 87 Watts (79%)

Memory Bandwidth

As far as performance goes, the GeForce 9800 GX2 should theoretically be quite a bit superior to the Radeon HD 4850 512MB in general. (explain)

GeForce 9800 GX2 128000 MB/sec
Radeon HD 4850 512MB 63552 MB/sec
Difference: 64448 (101%)

Texel Rate

The GeForce 9800 GX2 will be a lot (more or less 207%) faster with regards to AF than the Radeon HD 4850 512MB. (explain)

GeForce 9800 GX2 76800 Mtexels/sec
Radeon HD 4850 512MB 25000 Mtexels/sec
Difference: 51800 (207%)

Pixel Rate

The GeForce 9800 GX2 should be quite a bit (about 92%) more effective at anti-aliasing than the Radeon HD 4850 512MB, and able to handle higher resolutions better. (explain)

GeForce 9800 GX2 19200 Mpixels/sec
Radeon HD 4850 512MB 10000 Mpixels/sec
Difference: 9200 (92%)

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 GX2

Amazon.com

Check prices at:

Radeon HD 4850 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 GeForce 9800 GX2 Radeon HD 4850 512MB
Manufacturer nVidia AMD
Year Mar 2008 Jun 25, 2008
Code Name G92 RV770 PRO
Memory 512 MB (x2) 512 MB
Core Speed 600 MHz (x2) 625 MHz
Memory Speed 2000 MHz (x2) 1986 MHz
Power (Max TDP) 197 watts 110 watts
Bandwidth 128000 MB/sec 63552 MB/sec
Texel Rate 76800 Mtexels/sec 25000 Mtexels/sec
Pixel Rate 19200 Mpixels/sec 10000 Mpixels/sec
Unified Shaders 128 (x2) 800(160x5)
Texture Mapping Units 64 (x2) 40
Render Output Units 16 (x2) 16
Bus Type GDDR3 GDDR3
Bus Width 256-bit (x2) 256-bit
Fab Process 65 nm 55 nm
Transistors 754 million 956 million
Bus PCIe x16 2.0 PCIe 2.0 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 (measured in MB per second) that can be transferred across the external memory interface within a second. The number is worked out by multiplying the bus width by its memory clock speed. In the case of DDR type memory, it must be multiplied by 2 once again. If DDR5, multiply by ANOTHER 2x. The better the bandwidth is, the faster 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 applied in one second. This number is calculated by multiplying the total amount of texture units by the core speed of the chip. The better the texel rate, the better the card will be at texture filtering (anisotropic filtering - AF). It is measured in millions of texels applied per second.

Pixel Rate: Pixel rate is the most pixels that the graphics chip could possibly write to its local memory in one second - measured in millions of pixels per second. The figure is worked out by multiplying the amount of ROPs 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 fill rate also depends on many other factors, especially the memory bandwidth of the card - the lower the memory bandwidth is, the lower the potential to get to the max fill rate.

Display Prices

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GeForce 9800 GX2

Amazon.com

Check prices at:

Radeon HD 4850 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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