Choosing between these 2 cards


Mar 17, 2009
Hi all,

I'll be putting a HD 4770 512MB, or a HD 4850 1GB in my machine shortly, tossing up between the two and the prices seem within around A$40-50 of each other. I note that while the former is a 512MB card with a 128bit memory interface, it features GDDR5 so there must be some decent performance there. So which is quicker, does anyone know? And is the difference in performance significant?

I am using an Intel E6600 2.4GHz chip on an Asus P5Q Pro m/b with 4GB of 667MHz RAM. I mostly play WoW but also the occasional fps. Are either of these cards wasted/ less appropriate on this system or the intended use?

I understand the 4770 is a 40nm chip meaning it sucks less power. I also hear the 4850 runs pretty hot - perhaps meaning a shorter expected life span?

Does anyone have an opinion on which is better value for money in terms of purchase price and ongoing use?



Edit: Antec Sonata case, 500W power.
The HD 4770 is for those with weaker power supplies, but want good performance.

On average, the HD 4770 is about 6% slower than the HD 4850, but consumes less than 50% power than the HD 4850. Thus, those people can probably save money on a new power supply.

Also for those who wants to build a low power gaming PC.
When the HD4770 was $99 and the HD4850 was $130 or $140, then the HD4770 was a great deal. Now that the prices of the 4770 have climbed to $120 and the 4850 have dropped (even the 1GB is $120) , it's really only a good deal in special applications.


Feb 9, 2007
Also something the others didn't mention is that >512mb of memory is only really useful at higher resolutions such as 1920x1200 and up. The 4850, although being a solid card, doesn't really have the horsepower to really use 1gb of memory. Look here, the performance difference is from 2-7FPS depending on the game with most being in the 2-3FPS range. I would save myself the money and go with the 4850 512 or possible a factory overclocked 512.

And by the way, here is a review with the 4770 and 4850 512 so you can see the performance for yourself.
The Earthwatts 500W PSU that came with your Sonata can run either card. If WoW is the most demanding game you intend to play, the performance difference between them will be insignificant; get whichever one is cheaper. If you anticipate needing more graphics power later, get the 4850. If you don't, and are especially interested in being frugal, check out the HD4670 also. The one weakness I think the Sonata case has is cooling. That won't matter if the 4850 you choose exhausts its heat. Otherwise, you can add a front fan to the case, and/or a PCI slot cooler.


The 4770 is practically silent in any gamer pc, quiet in a quiet pc.

The performance difference between it and a 4850 can barely be measured with your eyes. Along with the 4850 and gts250...there is simply no discernable difference to a player because they are so evenly matched.

Would I pay more for a 4770? No. I would pay the same however, and less is a no-brainer. The only real threat to it is the ever-lowering price of the 4870 512mb which is a noticably superior card to any of the 3 mentioned.


Mar 17, 2009
Hi guys, thanks again.

ausch30, no decision yet...

Arguments for the 4770:
- WoW will still be the most frequently played game and I'm even slowing down on that
- location of the system is close to where my wife sleeps and she complains about the electrostatic whine of a TV on standby let alone a graphics card fan engaging

Arguments for the 4850:
- we'll be buying a 24inch monitor soon so I'll be wanting to play on the full 1200p to take advantage of the monitor's native res
- 4850 sould see me right for any other games I might take up like BF 2142 or whatever

Edit: I do sleep in the same place as my wife... just get there later. Like, when Emalon goes down ;)