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GeForce 8800 Ultra vs Radeon HD 4870 2GB

Intro

The GeForce 8800 Ultra uses a 90 nm design. nVidia has set the core frequency at 612 MHz. The GDDR3 memory is set to run at a frequency of 1080 MHz on this model. It features 128 SPUs as well as 64 Texture Address Units and 24 ROPs.

Compare all of that to the Radeon HD 4870 2GB, which features clock 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 Texture Address Units and 16 Rasterization Operator Units.

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Power Usage and Theoretical Benchmarks

Power Consumption (Max TDP)

Radeon HD 4870 2GB 150 Watts
GeForce 8800 Ultra 171 Watts
Difference: 21 Watts (14%)

Memory Bandwidth

The Radeon HD 4870 2GB should in theory be just a bit faster than the GeForce 8800 Ultra in general. (explain)

Radeon HD 4870 2GB 115200 MB/sec
GeForce 8800 Ultra 103680 MB/sec
Difference: 11520 (11%)

Texel Rate

The GeForce 8800 Ultra will be quite a bit (about 31%) more effective at AF than the Radeon HD 4870 2GB. (explain)

GeForce 8800 Ultra 39168 Mtexels/sec
Radeon HD 4870 2GB 30000 Mtexels/sec
Difference: 9168 (31%)

Pixel Rate

If running with high levels of AA is important to you, then the GeForce 8800 Ultra is the winner, by a large margin. (explain)

GeForce 8800 Ultra 14688 Mpixels/sec
Radeon HD 4870 2GB 12000 Mpixels/sec
Difference: 2688 (22%)

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

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GeForce 8800 Ultra

Amazon.com

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Radeon HD 4870 2GB

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 GeForce 8800 Ultra Radeon HD 4870 2GB
Manufacturer nVidia AMD
Year May 2007 Jun 25, 2008
Code Name G80 RV770 XT
Memory 768 MB 2048 MB
Core Speed 612 MHz 750 MHz
Memory Speed 2160 MHz 3600 MHz
Power (Max TDP) 171 watts 150 watts
Bandwidth 103680 MB/sec 115200 MB/sec
Texel Rate 39168 Mtexels/sec 30000 Mtexels/sec
Pixel Rate 14688 Mpixels/sec 12000 Mpixels/sec
Unified Shaders 128 800(160x5)
Texture Mapping Units 64 40
Render Output Units 24 16
Bus Type GDDR3 GDDR5
Bus Width 384-bit 256-bit
Fab Process 90 nm 55 nm
Transistors 681 million 956 million
Bus PCIe x16 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 (in units of MB per second) that can be transferred past the external memory interface within a second. It is calculated by multiplying the interface width by its memory speed. If it uses DDR RAM, the result should be multiplied by 2 again. If DDR5, multiply by ANOTHER 2x. The better the card's 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 is worked out by multiplying the total texture units by the core clock speed of the chip. The higher this number, the better the video card will be at texture filtering (anisotropic filtering - AF). It is measured in millions of texels processed per second.

Pixel Rate: Pixel rate is the maximum amount of pixels the graphics card can possibly write to the local memory per second - measured in millions of pixels per second. The figure is calculated by multiplying the number of Render Output Units by the the card's clock speed. ROPs (Raster Operations Pipelines - sometimes also referred to as Render Output Units) are responsible for outputting the pixels (image) to the screen. The actual pixel fill rate also depends on quite a few other factors, especially the memory bandwidth of the card - the lower the bandwidth is, the lower the potential to get to the max fill rate.

Display Prices

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GeForce 8800 Ultra

Amazon.com

Check prices at:

Radeon HD 4870 2GB

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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