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Radeon HD 6790 vs Radeon HD 7950

Intro

The Radeon HD 6790 uses a 40 nm design. AMD has clocked the core frequency at 840 MHz. The GDDR5 memory works at a frequency of 1050 MHz on this particular card. It features 800 SPUs along with 40 TAUs and 16 ROPs.

Compare those specifications to the Radeon HD 7950, which makes use of a 28 nm design. AMD has clocked the core speed at 800 MHz. The GDDR5 RAM is set to run at a frequency of 1250 MHz on this model. It features 1792 SPUs along with 112 Texture Address Units and 32 ROPs.

(No game benchmarks for this combination yet.)

Power Usage and Theoretical Benchmarks

Power Consumption (Max TDP)

Radeon HD 6790 150 Watts
Radeon HD 7950 200 Watts
Difference: 50 Watts (33%)

Memory Bandwidth

As far as performance goes, the Radeon HD 7950 should theoretically be much better than the Radeon HD 6790 in general. (explain)

Radeon HD 7950 240000 MB/sec
Radeon HD 6790 134400 MB/sec
Difference: 105600 (79%)

Texel Rate

The Radeon HD 7950 should be a lot (more or less 167%) faster with regards to anisotropic filtering than the Radeon HD 6790. (explain)

Radeon HD 7950 89600 Mtexels/sec
Radeon HD 6790 33600 Mtexels/sec
Difference: 56000 (167%)

Pixel Rate

If using a high resolution is important to you, then the Radeon HD 7950 is a better choice, by a large margin. (explain)

Radeon HD 7950 25600 Mpixels/sec
Radeon HD 6790 13440 Mpixels/sec
Difference: 12160 (90%)

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 6790

Amazon.com

Radeon HD 7950

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 6790 Radeon HD 7950
Manufacturer AMD AMD
Year April 2011 January 2012
Code Name Barts LE Tahiti Pro
Fab Process 40 nm 28 nm
Bus PCIe 2.1 x16 PCIe 3.0 x16
Memory 1024 MB 1536 MB
Core Speed 840 MHz 800 MHz
Shader Speed N/A MHz (N/A) MHz
Memory Speed 1050 MHz (4200 MHz effective) 1250 MHz (5000 MHz effective)
Unified Shaders 800 1792
Texture Mapping Units 40 112
Render Output Units 16 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) 150 watts 200 watts
Shader Model 5.0 5.0
Bandwidth 134400 MB/sec 240000 MB/sec
Texel Rate 33600 Mtexels/sec 89600 Mtexels/sec
Pixel Rate 13440 Mpixels/sec 25600 Mpixels/sec

Memory Bandwidth: Memory bandwidth is the largest amount of information (counted in MB per second) that can be moved over the external memory interface in one second. It is worked out by multiplying the card's bus width by its memory clock speed. In the case of DDR RAM, it should be multiplied by 2 once again. If it uses DDR5, multiply by ANOTHER 2x. The higher the card's memory bandwidth, the better the card will be in general. It especially helps with AA, High Dynamic Range 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 amount of texture units of the card by the core speed of the chip. The better this number, the better the video card will be at handling texture filtering (anisotropic filtering - AF). It is measured in millions of texels processed in a second.

Pixel Rate: Pixel rate is the maximum number of pixels that the graphics card could possibly write to its local memory in one second - measured in millions of pixels per second. The figure is calculated by multiplying the number of ROPs by the clock speed of the card. ROPs (Raster Operations Pipelines - also sometimes called Render Output Units) are responsible for outputting the pixels (image) to the screen. The actual pixel rate also depends on quite a few other factors, most notably the memory bandwidth of the card - the lower the memory bandwidth is, the lower the potential to reach the max fill rate.

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