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GeForce GTX 580 vs Radeon HD 7850

Intro

The GeForce GTX 580 comes with a clock speed of 772 MHz and a GDDR5 memory speed of 1002 MHz. It also features a 384-bit memory bus, and uses a 40 nm design. It is made up of 512 SPUs, 64 Texture Address Units, and 48 Raster Operation Units.

Compare that to the Radeon HD 7850, which features a GPU core clock speed of 860 MHz, and 2048 MB of GDDR5 RAM running at 1200 MHz through a 256-bit bus. It also features 1024 SPUs, 64 Texture Address Units, and 32 Raster Operation Units.

Display Graphs

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Power Usage and Theoretical Benchmarks

Power Consumption (Max TDP)

Radeon HD 7850 130 Watts
GeForce GTX 580 244 Watts
Difference: 114 Watts (88%)

Memory Bandwidth

As far as performance goes, the GeForce GTX 580 should theoretically be much superior to the Radeon HD 7850 in general. (explain)

GeForce GTX 580 192384 MB/sec
Radeon HD 7850 153600 MB/sec
Difference: 38784 (25%)

Texel Rate

The Radeon HD 7850 will be a small bit (more or less 11%) more effective at AF than the GeForce GTX 580. (explain)

Radeon HD 7850 55040 Mtexels/sec
GeForce GTX 580 49408 Mtexels/sec
Difference: 5632 (11%)

Pixel Rate

If using high levels of AA is important to you, then the GeForce GTX 580 is the winner, by a large margin. (explain)

GeForce GTX 580 37056 Mpixels/sec
Radeon HD 7850 27520 Mpixels/sec
Difference: 9536 (35%)

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

GeForce GTX 580

Radeon HD 7850

Specifications

Display Specifications

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Model GeForce GTX 580 Radeon HD 7850
Manufacturer nVidia AMD
Year November 2010 March 2012
Code Name GF110 Pitcairn Pro
Memory 1536 MB 2048 MB
Core Speed 772 MHz 860 MHz
Memory Speed 4008 MHz 4800 MHz
Power (Max TDP) 244 watts 130 watts
Bandwidth 192384 MB/sec 153600 MB/sec
Texel Rate 49408 Mtexels/sec 55040 Mtexels/sec
Pixel Rate 37056 Mpixels/sec 27520 Mpixels/sec
Unified Shaders 512 1024
Texture Mapping Units 64 64
Render Output Units 48 32
Bus Type GDDR5 GDDR5
Bus Width 384-bit 256-bit
Fab Process 40 nm 28 nm
Transistors 3000 million 2800 million
Bus PCIe x16 PCIe 3.0 x16
DirectX Version DirectX 11 DirectX 11.1
OpenGL Version OpenGL 4.1 OpenGL 4.2

Memory Bandwidth: Bandwidth is the largest amount of information (measured in megabytes per second) that can be transported past the external memory interface in a second. It's calculated by multiplying the card's bus width by the speed of its memory. If it uses DDR memory, it should be multiplied by 2 again. If DDR5, multiply by ANOTHER 2x. The better the bandwidth is, the better the card will be in general. It especially helps with anti-aliasing, HDR and higher screen resolutions.

Texel Rate: Texel rate is the maximum texture map elements (texels) that are processed in one second. This figure is worked out by multiplying the total number of texture units of the card by the core speed of the chip. The better this number, the better the card will be at handling texture filtering (anisotropic filtering - AF). It is measured in millions of texels processed per second.

Pixel Rate: Pixel rate is the maximum amount of pixels the graphics card can possibly write to its local memory per second - measured in millions of pixels per second. Pixel rate is calculated by multiplying the number of colour ROPs by the the core clock speed. ROPs (Raster Operations Pipelines - also sometimes called Render Output Units) are responsible for outputting the pixels (image) to the screen. The actual pixel fill 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 ability to reach the maximum fill rate.

GeForce GTX 580

Radeon HD 7850

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