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Radeon HD 4870 X2 vs Radeon HD 7870 XT

Intro

The Radeon HD 4870 X2 comes with a core clock frequency of 750 MHz and a GDDR5 memory frequency of 900 MHz. It also features a 256-bit bus, and makes use of a 55 nm design. It features 800(160x5) SPUs, 40 Texture Address Units, and 16 ROPs.

Compare those specifications to the Radeon HD 7870 XT, which comes with GPU clock speed of 925 MHz, and 2048 MB of GDDR5 RAM set to run at 1500 MHz through a 256-bit bus. It also features 1536 SPUs, 96 Texture Address Units, and 32 ROPs.

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Power Usage and Theoretical Benchmarks

Power Consumption (Max TDP)

Radeon HD 7870 XT 185 Watts
Radeon HD 4870 X2 350 Watts
Difference: 165 Watts (89%)

Memory Bandwidth

Theoretically speaking, the Radeon HD 4870 X2 should perform just a bit faster than the Radeon HD 7870 XT in general. (explain)

Radeon HD 4870 X2 230400 MB/sec
Radeon HD 7870 XT 192000 MB/sec
Difference: 38400 (20%)

Texel Rate

The Radeon HD 7870 XT is much (more or less 48%) faster with regards to anisotropic filtering than the Radeon HD 4870 X2. (explain)

Radeon HD 7870 XT 88800 Mtexels/sec
Radeon HD 4870 X2 60000 Mtexels/sec
Difference: 28800 (48%)

Pixel Rate

The Radeon HD 7870 XT will be a lot (more or less 23%) better at full screen anti-aliasing than the Radeon HD 4870 X2, and able to handle higher screen resolutions without losing too much performance. (explain)

Radeon HD 7870 XT 29600 Mpixels/sec
Radeon HD 4870 X2 24000 Mpixels/sec
Difference: 5600 (23%)

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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Radeon HD 4870 X2

Amazon.com

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Radeon HD 7870 XT

Amazon.com

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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 Radeon HD 4870 X2 Radeon HD 7870 XT
Manufacturer AMD AMD
Year Aug 12, 2008 November 2012
Code Name R700 Tahiti LE
Memory 1024 MB (x2) 2048 MB
Core Speed 750 MHz (x2) 925 MHz
Memory Speed 3600 MHz (x2) 6000 MHz
Power (Max TDP) 350 watts 185 watts
Bandwidth 230400 MB/sec 192000 MB/sec
Texel Rate 60000 Mtexels/sec 88800 Mtexels/sec
Pixel Rate 24000 Mpixels/sec 29600 Mpixels/sec
Unified Shaders 800(160x5) (x2) 1536
Texture Mapping Units 40 (x2) 96
Render Output Units 16 (x2) 32
Bus Type GDDR5 GDDR5
Bus Width 256-bit (x2) 256-bit
Fab Process 55 nm 28 nm
Transistors 956 million 4313 million
Bus PCIe 2.0 x16 (PCIe bridge) PCIe 3.0 x16
DirectX Version DirectX 10.1 DirectX 11.1
OpenGL Version OpenGL 3.0 OpenGL 4.3

Memory Bandwidth: Memory bandwidth is the max amount of information (counted in megabytes per second) that can be moved across the external memory interface in one second. It's calculated by multiplying the interface width by the speed of its memory. In the case of DDR type memory, the result should be multiplied by 2 once again. If DDR5, multiply by 4 instead. The higher the memory bandwidth, 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 amount of texture map elements (texels) that are processed per second. This number is calculated by multiplying the total amount of texture units 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 per second.

Pixel Rate: Pixel rate is the most pixels the video card could possibly record to its local memory in one second - measured in millions of pixels per second. Pixel rate is calculated by multiplying the number of Render Output Units by the the card's 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 is also dependant on lots of other factors, most notably the memory bandwidth of the card - the lower the bandwidth is, the lower the potential to reach the maximum fill rate.

Display Prices

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Radeon HD 4870 X2

Amazon.com

Check prices at:

Radeon HD 7870 XT

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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