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GeForce 9800 GX2 vs Radeon HD 3470 256MB

Intro

The GeForce 9800 GX2 comes with a clock frequency of 600 MHz and a GDDR3 memory speed of 1000 MHz. It also makes use of a 256-bit memory bus, and makes use of a 65 nm design. It features 128 SPUs, 64 TAUs, and 16 Raster Operation Units.

Compare all that to the Radeon HD 3470 256MB, which comes with a GPU core clock speed of 800 MHz, and 256 MB of DDR2 memory set to run at 950 MHz through a 128-bit bus. It also features 40(8x5) SPUs, 4 TAUs, and 4 ROPs.

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Power Usage and Theoretical Benchmarks

Memory Bandwidth

As far as performance goes, the GeForce 9800 GX2 should in theory be a lot superior to the Radeon HD 3470 256MB overall. (explain)

GeForce 9800 GX2 128000 MB/sec
Radeon HD 3470 256MB 30400 MB/sec
Difference: 97600 (321%)

Texel Rate

The GeForce 9800 GX2 should be quite a bit (about 2300%) more effective at anisotropic filtering than the Radeon HD 3470 256MB. (explain)

GeForce 9800 GX2 76800 Mtexels/sec
Radeon HD 3470 256MB 3200 Mtexels/sec
Difference: 73600 (2300%)

Pixel Rate

The GeForce 9800 GX2 should be much (approximately 500%) better at anti-aliasing than the Radeon HD 3470 256MB, and also able to handle higher resolutions while still performing well. (explain)

GeForce 9800 GX2 19200 Mpixels/sec
Radeon HD 3470 256MB 3200 Mpixels/sec
Difference: 16000 (500%)

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 3470 256MB

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 3470 256MB
Manufacturer nVidia AMD
Year Mar 2008 2008
Code Name G92 RV620 PRO
Memory 512 MB (x2) 256 MB
Core Speed 600 MHz (x2) 800 MHz
Memory Speed 2000 MHz (x2) 1900 MHz
Power (Max TDP) 197 watts (Unknown) watts
Bandwidth 128000 MB/sec 30400 MB/sec
Texel Rate 76800 Mtexels/sec 3200 Mtexels/sec
Pixel Rate 19200 Mpixels/sec 3200 Mpixels/sec
Unified Shaders 128 (x2) 40(8x5)
Texture Mapping Units 64 (x2) 4
Render Output Units 16 (x2) 4
Bus Type GDDR3 DDR2
Bus Width 256-bit (x2) 128-bit
Fab Process 65 nm 55 nm
Transistors 754 million (Unknown) 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 maximum amount of data (counted in MB per second) that can be moved over the external memory interface in a second. It is calculated by multiplying the bus width by its memory clock speed. If the card has DDR type memory, it must be multiplied by 2 again. If DDR5, multiply by ANOTHER 2x. The higher the card's memory bandwidth, the better the card will be in general. It especially helps with anti-aliasing, HDR and higher screen resolutions.

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

Pixel Rate: Pixel rate is the most pixels that the graphics card can possibly write to its local memory in a second - measured in millions of pixels per second. The number is worked out by multiplying the amount of Raster Operations Pipelines by the the core clock speed. ROPs (Raster Operations Pipelines - aka Render Output Units) are responsible for drawing the pixels (image) on the screen. The actual pixel output rate also depends on lots of other factors, especially the memory bandwidth - the lower the bandwidth is, the lower the ability to get to the maximum fill rate.

Display Prices

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GeForce 9800 GX2

Amazon.com

Check prices at:

Radeon HD 3470 256MB

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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