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GeForce GTX 285 2GB vs Radeon HD 3870 X2 1GB

Intro

The GeForce GTX 285 2GB uses a 55 nm design. nVidia has set the core frequency at 648 MHz. The GDDR3 memory runs at a speed of 1242 MHz on this card. It features 240 SPUs as well as 80 Texture Address Units and 32 ROPs.

Compare all of that to the Radeon HD 3870 X2 1GB, which comes with a core clock speed of 825 MHz and a GDDR4 memory speed of 1126 MHz. It also uses a 256-bit bus, and makes use of a 55 nm design. It is comprised of 320(64x5) SPUs, 16 TAUs, and 16 Raster Operation Units.

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Power Usage and Theoretical Benchmarks

Memory Bandwidth

In theory, the GeForce GTX 285 2GB should perform just a bit faster than the Radeon HD 3870 X2 1GB in general. (explain)

GeForce GTX 285 2GB 158976 MB/sec
Radeon HD 3870 X2 1GB 144128 MB/sec
Difference: 14848 (10%)

Texel Rate

The GeForce GTX 285 2GB should be a lot (more or less 96%) better at AF than the Radeon HD 3870 X2 1GB. (explain)

GeForce GTX 285 2GB 51840 Mtexels/sec
Radeon HD 3870 X2 1GB 26400 Mtexels/sec
Difference: 25440 (96%)

Pixel Rate

The Radeon HD 3870 X2 1GB will be a lot (about 27%) more effective at FSAA than the GeForce GTX 285 2GB, and also will be able to handle higher screen resolutions without losing too much performance. (explain)

Radeon HD 3870 X2 1GB 26400 Mpixels/sec
GeForce GTX 285 2GB 20736 Mpixels/sec
Difference: 5664 (27%)

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 GTX 285 2GB

Amazon.com

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Radeon HD 3870 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 GTX 285 2GB Radeon HD 3870 X2 1GB
Manufacturer nVidia AMD
Year January 15, 2009 Jan 28, 2008
Code Name G200b R680
Memory 2048 MB 1024 MB (x2)
Core Speed 648 MHz 825 MHz (x2)
Memory Speed 2484 MHz 2252 MHz (x2)
Power (Max TDP) 204 watts (Unknown) watts
Bandwidth 158976 MB/sec 144128 MB/sec
Texel Rate 51840 Mtexels/sec 26400 Mtexels/sec
Pixel Rate 20736 Mpixels/sec 26400 Mpixels/sec
Unified Shaders 240 320(64x5) (x2)
Texture Mapping Units 80 16 (x2)
Render Output Units 32 16 (x2)
Bus Type GDDR3 GDDR4
Bus Width 512-bit 256-bit (x2)
Fab Process 55 nm 55 nm
Transistors 1400 million (Unknown) million
Bus PCIe x16 2.0 PCIe 2.0 x16/(internal PCIe 1.1 x16)
DirectX Version DirectX 10 DirectX 10.1
OpenGL Version OpenGL 3.1 OpenGL 3.0

Memory Bandwidth: Bandwidth is the max amount of data (in units of MB per second) that can be moved across the external memory interface in one second. The number is calculated by multiplying the card's bus width by its memory speed. In the case of DDR RAM, the result should be multiplied by 2 once again. If it uses DDR5, multiply by 4 instead. The better the memory bandwidth, the better the card will be in general. It especially helps with anti-aliasing, High Dynamic Range and higher screen resolutions.

Texel Rate: Texel rate is the maximum amount of texture map elements (texels) that can be applied in one second. This figure is calculated by multiplying the total amount of texture units of the card by the core speed of the chip. The better the texel rate, the better the graphics card will be at handling texture filtering (anisotropic filtering - AF). It is measured in millions of texels in a 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. Pixel rate is calculated by multiplying the number of Raster Operations Pipelines by the the core speed of the card. ROPs (Raster Operations Pipelines - aka Render Output Units) are responsible for outputting the pixels (image) to the screen. The actual pixel fill rate also depends on many other factors, most notably the memory bandwidth - the lower the bandwidth is, the lower the potential to reach the max fill rate.

Display Prices

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GeForce GTX 285 2GB

Amazon.com

Check prices at:

Radeon HD 3870 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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