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Radeon HD 5850 vs Radeon HD 7850

Intro

The Radeon HD 5850 comes with a clock frequency of 725 MHz and a GDDR5 memory speed of 1000 MHz. It also features a 256-bit bus, and makes use of a 40 nm design. It is comprised of 1440(288x5) SPUs, 72 TAUs, and 32 Raster Operation Units.

Compare those specifications to the Radeon HD 7850, which uses a 28 nm design. AMD has clocked the core speed at 860 MHz. The GDDR5 memory runs at a speed of 1200 MHz on this card. It features 1024 SPUs as well as 64 TAUs and 32 ROPs.

(No game benchmarks for this combination yet.)

Power Usage and Theoretical Benchmarks

Power Consumption (Max TDP)

Radeon HD 7850 130 Watts
Radeon HD 5850 151 Watts
Difference: 21 Watts (16%)

Memory Bandwidth

In theory, the Radeon HD 7850 will be 20% quicker than the Radeon HD 5850 in general, due to its greater data rate. (explain)

Radeon HD 7850 153600 MB/sec
Radeon HD 5850 128000 MB/sec
Difference: 25600 (20%)

Texel Rate

The Radeon HD 7850 is just a bit (approximately 5%) more effective at AF than the Radeon HD 5850. (explain)

Radeon HD 7850 55040 Mtexels/sec
Radeon HD 5850 52200 Mtexels/sec
Difference: 2840 (5%)

Pixel Rate

The Radeon HD 7850 will be a bit (more or less 19%) better at FSAA than the Radeon HD 5850, and also able to handle higher screen resolutions better. (explain)

Radeon HD 7850 27520 Mpixels/sec
Radeon HD 5850 23200 Mpixels/sec
Difference: 4320 (19%)

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 5850

Amazon.com

Radeon HD 7850

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 5850 Radeon HD 7850
Manufacturer AMD AMD
Year September 30, 2009 March 2012
Code Name Cypress PRO Pitcairn Pro
Fab Process 40 nm 28 nm
Bus PCIe 2.1 x16 PCIe 3.0 x16
Memory 1024 MB 2048 MB
Core Speed 725 MHz 860 MHz
Shader Speed N/A MHz (N/A) MHz
Memory Speed 1000 MHz (4000 MHz effective) 1200 MHz (4800 MHz effective)
Unified Shaders 1440(288x5) 1024
Texture Mapping Units 72 64
Render Output Units 32 32
Bus Type GDDR5 GDDR5
Bus Width 256-bit 256-bit
DirectX Version DirectX 11 DirectX 11.1
OpenGL Version OpenGL 3.2 OpenGL 4.2
Power (Max TDP) 151 watts 130 watts
Shader Model 5.0 5.0
Bandwidth 128000 MB/sec 153600 MB/sec
Texel Rate 52200 Mtexels/sec 55040 Mtexels/sec
Pixel Rate 23200 Mpixels/sec 27520 Mpixels/sec

Memory Bandwidth: Memory bandwidth is the max amount of information (counted in MB per second) that can be moved over the external memory interface in a second. It's worked out by multiplying the card's interface width by its memory speed. If the card has 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 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 applied per second. This figure is worked out by multiplying the total number of texture units of the card by the core clock speed of the chip. The higher the texel rate, the better the video 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 graphics card can possibly record to the local memory in one second - measured in millions of pixels per second. The number is worked out by multiplying the number of Raster Operations Pipelines by the the card's clock speed. ROPs (Raster Operations Pipelines - aka Render Output Units) are responsible for drawing the pixels (image) on the screen. The actual pixel rate is also dependant on quite a few other factors, most notably the memory bandwidth - the lower the bandwidth is, the lower the potential to get to the max fill rate.

Comments

3 Responses to “Radeon HD 5850 vs Radeon HD 7850”
[...] better performer as well as a better overclocker (if you overclock ofcourse). Check out this link- Radeon HD 5850 vs Radeon HD 7850 – Performance Comparison Benchmarks @ Hardware Compare Please note that it is completely theoretical and the real world performance may differ. Also [...]
Terrence says:
Hey Im looking at possibly upgrading my video card in couple of months.
I currently have radeon hd 5850 and was wondering whats the main difference when cards say core speed and memory speed?
I see cheaper cards on the market have the same core speed but are DDR2 instead of 3.
larsV12 says:
@Terrence .. core (clock) speed like any of the other measures of performance in gfx cards is all relative. You mention lesser cards having "the same core speed" .. and that's actually incorrect across each generation iteration of DDR & GDDR vRAM types. That's to say, a gfx card with 1GB of DDR2 vRAM will essentially perform no better than a card with 512MB's of GDDR3 vRAM. You see, the premise being that each generation of DDR roughly doubles the speed of the generation before. So, put another way, 1 GB of GDDR3 will perform at only half the speed of 1 GB of GDDR5. So, it's like this, DDR2 & DDR3?? Forget it .. they're yesterday's tech' - and a complete waste of time even thinking about (let alone discussing). If you're after a budget upgrade in the RED corner, i'd advise a HD6950 2GB - or better still a 6970, at the very least. If you're looking at the GREEN team, consider at least a GTX 480 or GTX 580. As all of those cards are getting relatively old now (but each still supporting DX 11 & all having GDDR5 vRAM), you should be able to pick up a bargain from either the GREEN or RED Team on any one of those cards i've named ;)

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