Compare any two graphics cards:
Radeon HD 5850 vs Radeon HD 7970
IntroThe Radeon HD 5850 features a GPU core speed of 725 MHz, and the 1024 MB of GDDR5 memory runs at 1000 MHz through a 256-bit bus. It also features 1440(288x5) Stream Processors, 72 Texture Address Units, and 32 Raster Operation Units.
Compare those specs to the Radeon HD 7970, which comes with clock speeds of 925 MHz on the GPU, and 1375 MHz on the 3072 MB of GDDR5 memory. It features 2048 SPUs as well as 128 Texture Address Units and 32 Rasterization Operator Units.
(No game benchmarks for this combination yet.)
Power Usage and Theoretical Benchmarks
Power Consumption (Max TDP)
As far as performance goes, the Radeon HD 7970 should theoretically be quite a bit superior to the Radeon HD 5850 overall. (explain)
Texel RateThe Radeon HD 7970 will be much (more or less 127%) faster with regards to AF than the Radeon HD 5850. (explain)
Pixel RateThe Radeon HD 7970 will be quite a bit (more or less 28%) more effective at full screen anti-aliasing than the Radeon HD 5850, and also should be able to handle higher screen resolutions more effectively. (explain)
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.
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.
Memory Bandwidth: Memory bandwidth is the maximum amount of information (counted in MB per second) that can be transferred across the external memory interface in one second. It's calculated by multiplying the card's interface width by its memory speed. In the case of DDR memory, it should be multiplied by 2 once again. If DDR5, multiply by 4 instead. The higher the card's memory bandwidth, the better the card will be in general. It especially helps with AA, HDR and higher screen resolutions.
Texel Rate: Texel rate is the maximum amount of texture map elements (texels) that are processed in one second. This figure is worked out by multiplying the total number of texture units 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 one second.
Pixel Rate: Pixel rate is the maximum number of pixels that the graphics chip can possibly write 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 core speed of the card. ROPs (Raster Operations Pipelines - aka Render Output Units) are responsible for filling the screen with pixels (the image). The actual pixel output rate also depends on lots of other factors, especially the memory bandwidth of the card - the lower the bandwidth is, the lower the potential to get to the max fill rate.