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GeForce 8800 Ultra vs Radeon HD 4850 X2 1GB

Intro

The GeForce 8800 Ultra features a GPU clock speed of 612 MHz, and the 768 MB of GDDR3 RAM runs at 1080 MHz through a 384-bit bus. It also features 128 Stream Processors, 64 TAUs, and 24 Raster Operation Units.

Compare that to the Radeon HD 4850 X2 1GB, which makes use of a 55 nm design. AMD has clocked the core frequency at 625 MHz. The GDDR3 RAM is set to run at a frequency of 993 MHz on this model. It features 800(160x5) SPUs as well as 40 TAUs and 16 Rasterization Operator Units.

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Power Usage and Theoretical Benchmarks

Power Consumption (Max TDP)

GeForce 8800 Ultra 171 Watts
Radeon HD 4850 X2 1GB 250 Watts
Difference: 79 Watts (46%)

Memory Bandwidth

In theory, the Radeon HD 4850 X2 1GB should perform a lot faster than the GeForce 8800 Ultra in general. (explain)

Radeon HD 4850 X2 1GB 127104 MB/sec
GeForce 8800 Ultra 103680 MB/sec
Difference: 23424 (23%)

Texel Rate

The Radeon HD 4850 X2 1GB should be quite a bit (about 28%) better at AF than the GeForce 8800 Ultra. (explain)

Radeon HD 4850 X2 1GB 50000 Mtexels/sec
GeForce 8800 Ultra 39168 Mtexels/sec
Difference: 10832 (28%)

Pixel Rate

The Radeon HD 4850 X2 1GB should be much (more or less 36%) more effective at full screen anti-aliasing than the GeForce 8800 Ultra, and also capable of handling higher resolutions better. (explain)

Radeon HD 4850 X2 1GB 20000 Mpixels/sec
GeForce 8800 Ultra 14688 Mpixels/sec
Difference: 5312 (36%)

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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GeForce 8800 Ultra

Amazon.com

Check prices at:

Radeon HD 4850 X2 1GB

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.

Specifications

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Model GeForce 8800 Ultra Radeon HD 4850 X2 1GB
Manufacturer nVidia AMD
Year May 2007 Nov 7, 2008
Code Name G80 R700
Memory 768 MB 1024 MB (x2)
Core Speed 612 MHz 625 MHz (x2)
Memory Speed 2160 MHz 1986 MHz (x2)
Power (Max TDP) 171 watts 250 watts
Bandwidth 103680 MB/sec 127104 MB/sec
Texel Rate 39168 Mtexels/sec 50000 Mtexels/sec
Pixel Rate 14688 Mpixels/sec 20000 Mpixels/sec
Unified Shaders 128 800(160x5) (x2)
Texture Mapping Units 64 40 (x2)
Render Output Units 24 16 (x2)
Bus Type GDDR3 GDDR3
Bus Width 384-bit 256-bit (x2)
Fab Process 90 nm 55 nm
Transistors 681 million 956 million
Bus PCIe x16 PCIe 2.0 x16 (PCIe bridge)
DirectX Version DirectX 10 DirectX 10.1
OpenGL Version OpenGL 3.0 OpenGL 3.0

Memory Bandwidth: Memory bandwidth is the largest amount of data (measured in megabytes per second) that can be transported past the external memory interface in a second. It's calculated by multiplying the card's interface width by its memory clock speed. If the card has DDR memory, it should be multiplied by 2 once again. If DDR5, multiply by ANOTHER 2x. The better the bandwidth is, the better the card will be in general. It especially helps with anti-aliasing, 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 calculated by multiplying the total texture units of the card by the core clock speed of the chip. The better this number, the better the card will be at handling texture filtering (anisotropic filtering - AF). It is measured in millions of texels applied per second.

Pixel Rate: Pixel rate is the maximum number of pixels that the graphics card can possibly write to its local memory in one 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 - aka Render Output Units) are responsible for filling the screen with pixels (the image). The actual pixel output rate is also dependant on quite a few other factors, most notably the memory bandwidth of the card - the lower the memory bandwidth is, the lower the ability to get to the maximum fill rate.

Display Prices

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GeForce 8800 Ultra

Amazon.com

Check prices at:

Radeon HD 4850 X2 1GB

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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