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Radeon HD 6970 vs Radeon HD 7970

Intro

The Radeon HD 6970 uses a 40 nm design. AMD has clocked the core speed at 880 MHz. The GDDR5 memory is set to run at a speed of 1375 MHz on this specific model. It features 1536 SPUs as well as 96 Texture Address Units and 32 ROPs.

Compare that to the Radeon HD 7970, which has a clock frequency of 925 MHz and a GDDR5 memory frequency of 1375 MHz. It also makes use of a 384-bit memory bus, and uses a 28 nm design. It is comprised of 2048 SPUs, 128 Texture Address Units, and 32 ROPs.

(No game benchmarks for this combination yet.)

Power Usage and Theoretical Benchmarks

Both cards have the same power consumption.

Memory Bandwidth

As far as performance goes, the Radeon HD 7970 should in theory be a lot superior to the Radeon HD 6970 overall. (explain)

Radeon HD 7970 264000 MB/sec
Radeon HD 6970 176000 MB/sec
Difference: 88000 (50%)

Texel Rate

The Radeon HD 7970 should be a lot (more or less 40%) faster with regards to AF than the Radeon HD 6970. (explain)

Radeon HD 7970 118400 Mtexels/sec
Radeon HD 6970 84480 Mtexels/sec
Difference: 33920 (40%)

Pixel Rate

If using a high screen resolution is important to you, then the Radeon HD 7970 is a better choice, though only just barely. (explain)

Radeon HD 7970 29600 Mpixels/sec
Radeon HD 6970 28160 Mpixels/sec
Difference: 1440 (5%)

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.

Price Comparison

Radeon HD 6970

Amazon.com

Radeon HD 7970

Amazon.com

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

Model Radeon HD 6970 Radeon HD 7970
Manufacturer AMD AMD
Year December 2010 January 2012
Code Name Cayman XT Tahiti XT
Fab Process 40 nm 28 nm
Bus PCIe x16 PCIe 3.0 x16
Memory 2048 MB 3072 MB
Core Speed 880 MHz 925 MHz
Shader Speed N/A MHz (N/A) MHz
Memory Speed 1375 MHz (5500 MHz effective) 1375 MHz (5500 MHz effective)
Unified Shaders 1536 2048
Texture Mapping Units 96 128
Render Output Units 32 32
Bus Type GDDR5 GDDR5
Bus Width 256-bit 384-bit
DirectX Version DirectX 11 DirectX 11.1
OpenGL Version OpenGL 4.1 OpenGL 4.2
Power (Max TDP) 250 watts 250 watts
Shader Model 5.0 5.0
Bandwidth 176000 MB/sec 264000 MB/sec
Texel Rate 84480 Mtexels/sec 118400 Mtexels/sec
Pixel Rate 28160 Mpixels/sec 29600 Mpixels/sec

Memory Bandwidth: Bandwidth is the max amount of information (in units of megabytes per second) that can be transferred over the external memory interface in a second. It is calculated by multiplying the card's bus width by the speed of its memory. If it uses DDR type RAM, it should be multiplied by 2 again. If it uses DDR5, multiply by 4 instead. The better the memory bandwidth, the faster the card will be in general. It especially helps with AA, HDR and high resolutions.

Texel Rate: Texel rate is the maximum amount of texture map elements (texels) that are processed in one second. This number is calculated by multiplying the total texture units of the card by the core clock speed of the chip. The higher the texel rate, the better the card will be at texture filtering (anisotropic filtering - AF). It is measured in millions of texels processed in a second.

Pixel Rate: Pixel rate is the most pixels the graphics card could possibly record to the local memory in a second - measured in millions of pixels per second. The number is worked out by multiplying the amount of Render Output Units by the the card's clock speed. ROPs (Raster Operations Pipelines - aka Render Output Units) are responsible for outputting the pixels (image) to the screen. The actual pixel output rate is also dependant on quite a few other factors, especially the memory bandwidth - the lower the bandwidth is, the lower the ability to get to the max fill rate.

Comments

4 Responses to “Radeon HD 6970 vs Radeon HD 7970”
timmeh says:
lol guys, get a 6970, its a lot cheaper
Some Dude says:
Do want! But still, then I have to invest in a new Mobo, and then it would be about double the price of a 6990

6990 > 7970

vlcrpt[0]r says:
2x 6970 > 6990 > 7970

But they are so loud :S

LunaticGTX says:
get 7970 and replace the cooler with arctic cooler 7970
cheaper than plus 2 or extreme

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