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GeForce GTX 550 Ti vs Radeon HD 4870 2GB

Intro

The GeForce GTX 550 Ti uses a 40 nm design. nVidia has set the core speed at 900 MHz. The GDDR5 memory is set to run at a speed of 1026 MHz on this specific card. It features 192 SPUs along with 32 TAUs and 24 Rasterization Operator Units.

Compare those specs to the Radeon HD 4870 2GB, which has GPU clock speed of 750 MHz, and 2048 MB of GDDR5 memory set to run at 900 MHz through a 256-bit bus. It also features 800(160x5) SPUs, 40 Texture Address Units, and 16 Raster Operation 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 in theory be just a bit faster than the GeForce GTX 550 Ti in general. (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 just a bit (more or less 4%) better at anisotropic filtering 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

If running with a high resolution is important to you, then the GeForce GTX 550 Ti is a better choice, by a large margin. (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: Bandwidth is the largest amount of data (counted in megabytes per second) that can be transferred over the external memory interface in a second. The number is calculated by multiplying the card's bus width by its memory speed. If it uses DDR type RAM, it must be multiplied by 2 again. If it uses DDR5, multiply by 4 instead. The higher the memory bandwidth, the better the card will be in general. It especially helps with anti-aliasing, HDR and high resolutions.

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

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

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