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AMD's new low-cost graphics card tested

AMD Radeon HD 4550 reviewed

After the review of the Radeon HD 4670 and 4650 some weeks ago, we now have the Radeon HD 4550. We tell you what the card does better than its predecessors and the Nvidia competitors.

AMD's Radeon HD 4550 reviewed
 
AMD's Radeon HD 4550 reviewed [Source: view picture gallery]
The main component of the latest Radeon is a GPU with the codename RV710. Like its bigger siblings RV770 and RV730 it also tries to deliver as much performance with a chip size as small as possible. The price sector is the area at and below 50 Euros.

The specifications of selected low-cost graphics cards:

  AMD Radeon   Nvidia Geforce  
  HD 4670 HD 4550 HD 3650 HD 3450 9500 GT 9400 GT 8500 GT
Chip RV730 RV710 RV635 RV615 G96(b) G96(b) G86
Process (Nanometer) 55 55 55 55 65 (b: 55) 65 (b: 55) 80
Transistors (Mio.) 514 242 378 181 314 ? 210
Core frequency (MHz) 750 600 725 600 550 550 450
Shader-ALU frequency (MHz) 750 600 725 600 1.375 1.350 900
VRAM frequency (MHz) 1.000 800 800 500 800 400 400
Shader version 4.1 4.1 4.1 4.1 4.0 4.0 4.0
Shader ALUs (VS/PS) 320 80 120 40 32 16 16
Texture units 32 8 8 4 16 8 8
VRAM (MiByte) 512 256/512 512 256 512 512 512
RAM type GDDR3 DDR3 GDDR3 DDR2 GDDR3 DDR2 DDR2
GFLOP/s 480 96 174 48 88 43,2 28,8
Texturefill (MTex/s) 24.000 4.800 5.800 2.400 8.800 4.400 3.600
Bandwidth (GiByte/s) 32 12,8 25,6 8 25,6 12,8 12,8


As you can see the HD 4670 (RV730) has the better ratio between calculating units and Die size than the HD 4550. But the latter one does better than its predecessor HD 3450: The number of Shader ALUs increased from 40 to 80 and the texture units were doubled from 4 to 8 units. The memory interface is still 64 Bit only but now accesses faster DDR3 memory (no "G” there though). This results in a bandwidth of 12.8 GByte per second.

In terms of figures the Radeon HD 4550 should be twice as fast as the HD 3450, but noticeably slower than the HD 3650. But what does it look like in reality? We will check that now.




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Author: Raffael Vötter (Sep 30, 2008)






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