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GeForce GTX 550 Ti vs Radeon HD 4870 2GB

Intro

The GeForce GTX 550 Ti has a core clock frequency of 900 MHz and a GDDR5 memory frequency of 1026 MHz. It also makes use of a 192-bit memory bus, and makes use of a 40 nm design. It is comprised of 192 SPUs, 32 Texture Address Units, and 24 ROPs.

Compare those specifications to the Radeon HD 4870 2GB, which comes with core speeds of 750 MHz on the GPU, and 900 MHz on the 2048 MB of GDDR5 RAM. It features 800(160x5) SPUs along with 40 TAUs and 16 Rasterization Operator Units.

(No game benchmarks for this combination yet.)

Power Usage and Theoretical Benchmarks

Power Consumption (Max TDP)

GeForce GTX 550 Ti 116 Watts
Radeon HD 4870 2GB 150 Watts
Difference: 34 Watts (29%)

Memory Bandwidth

The Radeon HD 4870 2GB should theoretically be a bit faster than the GeForce GTX 550 Ti overall. (explain)

Radeon HD 4870 2GB 115200 MB/sec
GeForce GTX 550 Ti 98496 MB/sec
Difference: 16704 (17%)

Texel Rate

The Radeon HD 4870 2GB should be a bit (about 4%) better at AF than the GeForce GTX 550 Ti. (explain)

Radeon HD 4870 2GB 30000 Mtexels/sec
GeForce GTX 550 Ti 28800 Mtexels/sec
Difference: 1200 (4%)

Pixel Rate

The GeForce GTX 550 Ti should be quite a bit (more or less 80%) more effective at full screen anti-aliasing than the Radeon HD 4870 2GB, and also capable of handling higher screen resolutions while still performing well. (explain)

GeForce GTX 550 Ti 21600 Mpixels/sec
Radeon HD 4870 2GB 12000 Mpixels/sec
Difference: 9600 (80%)

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.

Price Comparison

GeForce GTX 550 Ti

Amazon.com

Radeon HD 4870 2GB

Amazon.com

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

Model GeForce GTX 550 Ti Radeon HD 4870 2GB
Manufacturer nVidia AMD
Year March 2011 Jun 25, 2008
Code Name GF116 RV770 XT
Fab Process 40 nm 55 nm
Bus PCIe 2.1 x16 PCIe 2.0 x16
Memory 1024 MB 2048 MB
Core Speed 900 MHz 750 MHz
Shader Speed 1800 MHz (N/A) MHz
Memory Speed 1026 MHz (4104 MHz effective) 900 MHz (3600 MHz effective)
Unified Shaders 192 800(160x5)
Texture Mapping Units 32 40
Render Output Units 24 16
Bus Type GDDR5 GDDR5
Bus Width 192-bit 256-bit
DirectX Version DirectX 11 DirectX 10.1
OpenGL Version OpenGL 4.1 OpenGL 3.0
Power (Max TDP) 116 watts 150 watts
Shader Model 5.0 4.1
Bandwidth 98496 MB/sec 115200 MB/sec
Texel Rate 28800 Mtexels/sec 30000 Mtexels/sec
Pixel Rate 21600 Mpixels/sec 12000 Mpixels/sec

Memory Bandwidth: Memory bandwidth is the max amount of data (in units of MB per second) that can be transported past the external memory interface in a second. It is calculated by multiplying the card's bus width by its memory clock speed. If it uses DDR type RAM, the result should be multiplied by 2 once again. If DDR5, multiply by ANOTHER 2x. The higher the memory bandwidth, the better the card will be in general. It especially helps with AA, High Dynamic Range and high resolutions.

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

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

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