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Gaming Performance Comparison

Recommended System Requirements
Game Radeon HD 8850M Radeon R9 M290X Crossfire
Cyberpunk 2077 528% 45%
Hitman 3 717% 88%
Assassins Creed: Valhalla 474% 33%
Resident Evil 8 528% 45%
FIFA 21 217% 27%
Grand Theft Auto VI 783% 104%
Call of Duty: Black Ops Cold War 456% 28%
The Medium 683% 81%
Genshin Impact 528% 45%
Far Cry 6 808% 110%

In terms of overall gaming performance, the graphical capabilities of the AMD Radeon R9 M290X Crossfire are massively better than the AMD Radeon HD 8850M.

The R9 M290X has a 225 MHz higher core clock speed and 120 more Texture Mapping Units than the Radeon HD 8850M. This results in the R9 M290X providing 111 GTexel/s better texturing performance. This still holds weight but shader performance is generally more relevant, particularly since both of these GPUs support at least DirectX 10.

The R9 M290X has a 225 MHz higher core clock speed and 48 more Render Output Units than the Radeon HD 8850M. This results in the R9 M290X providing 44.4 GPixel/s better pixeling performance. However, both GPUs support DirectX 9 or above, and pixeling performance is only really relevant when comparing older cards.

The R9 M290X was released less than a year after the Radeon HD 8850M, and so they are likely to have similar driver support for optimizing performance when running the latest games.

The R9 M290X has 2048 MB more video memory than the Radeon HD 8850M, so is likely to be much better at displaying game textures at higher resolutions. This is supported by the fact that the R9 M290X also has superior memory performance overall.

The R9 M290X has 275.2 GB/sec greater memory bandwidth than the Radeon HD 8850M, which means that the memory performance of the R9 M290X is massively better than the Radeon HD 8850M.

The Radeon HD 8850M has 640 Shader Processing Units and the Radeon R9 M290X Crossfire has 2560. However, the actual shader performance of the Radeon HD 8850M is 496 and the actual shader performance of the R9 M290X is 1958. The R9 M290X having 1462 better shader performance and an altogether better performance when taking into account other relevant data means that the R9 M290X delivers a massively smoother and more efficient experience when processing graphical data than the Radeon HD 8850M.

The Radeon HD 8850M requires 45 Watts to run and the Radeon R9 M290X Crossfire requires 200 Watts. The R9 M290X requires 155 Watts more than the Radeon HD 8850M to run. The difference is significant enough that the R9 M290X may have an adverse affect on your yearly electricity bills in comparison to the Radeon HD 8850M.

Game FPS Benchmarks On Ultra

GPU Architecture

Core Speed625 MHzvs850 MHz
Boost Clock775 MHzvs900 MHz
ArchitectureGCN 1.1 Venus PROGCN 1.1 Neptune XT (x2)
OC Potential Fair vs Fair
Driver Support - vs Great
Release Date01 Apr 2013vs01 Jan 2014
GPU LinkGD LinkGD Link

Resolution Performance

green tick vs -
vs green tick
vs green tick
vs green tick
vs green tick

GPU Memory

Memory2048 MBvs4096 MB
Memory Speed1000 MHzvs1200 MHz
Memory Bus128 Bitvs512 Bit
Memory TypeDDR3vsGDDR5
Memory Bandwidth32GB/secvs307.2GB/sec
L2 Cache 256 KB vs green tick 1024 KB
Delta Color Compression no vs no
Memory Performance 0% green tick vs green tick 0%

GPU Display

Shader Processing Units640vs2560
Actual Shader Performance24%vs94%
Texture Mapping Units40vs160
Texture Rate25 GTexel/svs136 GTexel/s
Render Output Units16vs64
Pixel Rate10 GPixel/svs54.4 GPixel/s

GPU Outputs

Max Digital Resolution (WxH)4096x2160vs4096x2160
VGA Connections0vs0
DVI Connections0vs0
HDMI Connections0vs0
DisplayPort Connections-vs-

GPU Power Requirements

Max Power45 Wattsvs200 Watts
Recommended PSU--

GPU Features

Shader Model5.0vs5.0
Open GL4.2vs4.4
Open CL-vs-
Notebook GPUyesyes

GPU Supporting Hardware

Recommended ProcessorIntel Core i5-3360M 2.8GHzvsIntel Core i7-4930MX 4-Core 3.0GHz
Recommended RAM8 GBvs8 GB
Maximum Recommended Gaming Resolution1366x768vs1920x1080

Gaming Performance Value

Performance Value

GPU Mini Review

Mini ReviewOverview
Radeon HD 8850M is a Performance Mobile Graphics Card based on the Second Revision of the GCN Architecture.

The GCN 1.1 Release adds support for AMD's TrueAudio Technology which does calculations of audio effects "better" than the CPU and further improves the Powertune Technology.

It equips a GPU codenamed Venus PRO which has 10 Compute Units activated and thus offers 640 Shader Processing Units, 40 TMUs and 16 ROPs. The Central Unit Initially Operates at 625MHz and goes up to 775MHz, in Turbo Mode.

The GPU accesses a 2GB frame buffer of DDR3, through a 128-bit memory interface. The size of the frame buffer is exaggerated and in no way benefits the GPU. The memory clock operates at 1000MHz.

DirectX 11.0 Support (11.0 Hardware Default) and support for Crossfire, PowerTune Technology, Eyefinity, App Acceleration, HD3D, ZeroCore Power and other technologies.

Power Consumption
With a rated board TDP of 45W, it is suited for 17" or larger laptops.

Gaming benchmarks put its performance somewhat above NVIDIA's GeForce GT 750M.

System Suggestions
We recommend a Decent Processor (Intel Core i5 Mobile) and 8GB of RAM for a system with Radeon HD 8850M.
Radeon R9 M290X Crossfire is a solution of two Radeon R9 M290X put together using AMD'S Crossfire technology.
Check the page of Radeon R9 M290X to know more about its chip.
Crossfire relies a lot on proper driver support and may suffer from micro-stuttering in lower frame rates (below 30). Benchmarks indicate the performance is overall, is up to twice as better as a single Radeon R9 M290X performing by itself but at times (depending whether or not the 3D game supports crossfire or in the graphics driver) it performed worse than a single Radeon R9 M290X.
Even the most demanding games will run at the highest settings.
Recommended CPU
Possible GPU Upgrades
GPU Variants