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GeForce GTX 550 Ti vs Radeon HD 4850 512MB

Intro

The GeForce GTX 550 Ti uses a 40 nm design. nVidia has clocked the core frequency at 900 MHz. The GDDR5 memory runs at a speed of 1026 MHz on this particular model. It features 192 SPUs along with 32 Texture Address Units and 24 Rasterization Operator Units.

Compare those specifications to the Radeon HD 4850 512MB, which features a clock speed of 625 MHz and a GDDR3 memory speed of 993 MHz. It also features a 256-bit memory bus, and uses a 55 nm design. It features 800(160x5) SPUs, 40 TAUs, and 16 Raster Operation Units.

(No game benchmarks for this combination yet.)

Power Usage and Theoretical Benchmarks

Power Consumption (Max TDP)

Radeon HD 4850 512MB 110 Watts
GeForce GTX 550 Ti 116 Watts
Difference: 6 Watts (5%)

Memory Bandwidth

As far as performance goes, the GeForce GTX 550 Ti should in theory be quite a bit better than the Radeon HD 4850 512MB in general. (explain)

GeForce GTX 550 Ti 98496 MB/sec
Radeon HD 4850 512MB 63552 MB/sec
Difference: 34944 (55%)

Texel Rate

The GeForce GTX 550 Ti will be just a bit (more or less 15%) better at anisotropic filtering than the Radeon HD 4850 512MB. (explain)

GeForce GTX 550 Ti 28800 Mtexels/sec
Radeon HD 4850 512MB 25000 Mtexels/sec
Difference: 3800 (15%)

Pixel Rate

If running with high levels of AA is important to you, then the GeForce GTX 550 Ti is the winner, by a large margin. (explain)

GeForce GTX 550 Ti 21600 Mpixels/sec
Radeon HD 4850 512MB 10000 Mpixels/sec
Difference: 11600 (116%)

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 4850 512MB

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 4850 512MB
Manufacturer nVidia AMD
Year March 2011 Jun 25, 2008
Code Name GF116 RV770 PRO
Fab Process 40 nm 55 nm
Bus PCIe 2.1 x16 PCIe 2.0 x16
Memory 1024 MB 512 MB
Core Speed 900 MHz 625 MHz
Shader Speed 1800 MHz (N/A) MHz
Memory Speed 1026 MHz (4104 MHz effective) 993 MHz (1986 MHz effective)
Unified Shaders 192 800(160x5)
Texture Mapping Units 32 40
Render Output Units 24 16
Bus Type GDDR5 GDDR3
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 110 watts
Shader Model 5.0 4.1
Bandwidth 98496 MB/sec 63552 MB/sec
Texel Rate 28800 Mtexels/sec 25000 Mtexels/sec
Pixel Rate 21600 Mpixels/sec 10000 Mpixels/sec

Memory Bandwidth: Bandwidth is the largest amount of information (in units of megabytes per second) that can be transferred across the external memory interface within a second. It is worked out by multiplying the card's bus width by its memory speed. If the card has DDR type RAM, it must be multiplied by 2 again. If DDR5, multiply by ANOTHER 2x. The better the memory bandwidth, the faster the card will be in general. It especially helps with anti-aliasing, HDR and high resolutions.

Texel Rate: Texel rate is the maximum number of texture map elements (texels) that can be applied in one second. This number is worked out by multiplying the total texture units by the core speed of the chip. The higher the texel rate, the better the 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 maximum number of pixels the graphics card can possibly record to the local memory in one second - measured in millions of pixels per second. Pixel rate is calculated by multiplying the number of ROPs by the the core clock speed. ROPs (Raster Operations Pipelines - also sometimes called Render Output Units) are responsible for drawing the pixels (image) on the screen. The actual pixel fill rate is also dependant on quite a few other factors, most notably the memory bandwidth - the lower the memory bandwidth is, the lower the potential to get to the maximum fill rate.

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