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Radeon HD 5870 vs Radeon HD 7850

Intro

The Radeon HD 5870 features a GPU clock speed of 850 MHz, and the 1024 MB of GDDR5 memory is set to run at 1200 MHz through a 256-bit bus. It also features 1600(320x5) Stream Processors, 80 Texture Address Units, and 32 ROPs.

Compare those specifications to the Radeon HD 7850, which comes with GPU clock speed of 860 MHz, and 2048 MB of GDDR5 memory set to run at 1200 MHz through a 256-bit bus. It also is comprised of 1024 SPUs, 64 Texture Address Units, and 32 ROPs.

Display Graphs

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Power Usage and Theoretical Benchmarks

Power Consumption (Max TDP)

Radeon HD 7850 130 Watts
Radeon HD 5870 188 Watts
Difference: 58 Watts (45%)

Memory Bandwidth

Both cards have the exact same bandwidth, so in theory they should have identical performance. (explain)

Texel Rate

The Radeon HD 5870 will be a lot (about 24%) better at texture filtering than the Radeon HD 7850. (explain)

Radeon HD 5870 68000 Mtexels/sec
Radeon HD 7850 55040 Mtexels/sec
Difference: 12960 (24%)

Pixel Rate

The Radeon HD 7850 is a little bit (approximately 1%) better at AA than the Radeon HD 5870, and will be capable of handling higher screen resolutions without slowing down too much. (explain)

Radeon HD 7850 27520 Mpixels/sec
Radeon HD 5870 27200 Mpixels/sec
Difference: 320 (1%)

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 5870

Radeon HD 7850

Specifications

Display Specifications

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Model Radeon HD 5870 Radeon HD 7850
Manufacturer AMD AMD
Year September 23, 2009 March 2012
Code Name Cypress XT Pitcairn Pro
Memory 1024 MB 2048 MB
Core Speed 850 MHz 860 MHz
Memory Speed 4800 MHz 4800 MHz
Power (Max TDP) 188 watts 130 watts
Bandwidth 153600 MB/sec 153600 MB/sec
Texel Rate 68000 Mtexels/sec 55040 Mtexels/sec
Pixel Rate 27200 Mpixels/sec 27520 Mpixels/sec
Unified Shaders 1600(320x5) 1024
Texture Mapping Units 80 64
Render Output Units 32 32
Bus Type GDDR5 GDDR5
Bus Width 256-bit 256-bit
Fab Process 40 nm 28 nm
Transistors 2154 million 2800 million
Bus PCIe 2.1 x16 PCIe 3.0 x16
DirectX Version DirectX 11 DirectX 11.1
OpenGL Version OpenGL 3.2 OpenGL 4.2

Memory Bandwidth: Memory bandwidth is the maximum amount of information (in units of MB per second) that can be moved past the external memory interface in one second. The number is calculated by multiplying the bus width by its memory speed. If it uses DDR memory, the result should be multiplied by 2 once again. If DDR5, multiply by 4 instead. The better the card's 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 can be applied in one second. This number is calculated by multiplying the total number of texture units 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 in a second.

Pixel Rate: Pixel rate is the maximum amount of pixels the video card could possibly write to the local memory in one second - measured in millions of pixels per second. Pixel rate is calculated by multiplying the amount of Raster Operations Pipelines by the the core speed of the card. ROPs (Raster Operations Pipelines - sometimes also referred to as Render Output Units) are responsible for filling the screen with pixels (the image). The actual pixel fill rate is also dependant on many other factors, especially the memory bandwidth - the lower the bandwidth is, the lower the ability to reach the max fill rate.

Radeon HD 5870

Radeon HD 7850

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