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GeForce GTX 560 vs Radeon HD 7870

Intro

The GeForce GTX 560 uses a 40 nm design. nVidia has clocked the core speed at 810 MHz. The GDDR5 RAM runs at a frequency of 1001 MHz on this model. It features 336 SPUs along with 56 TAUs and 32 Rasterization Operator Units.

Compare those specifications to the Radeon HD 7870, which uses a 28 nm design. AMD has set the core frequency at 1000 MHz. The GDDR5 memory is set to run at a frequency of 1200 MHz on this particular card. It features 1280 SPUs along with 80 Texture Address Units and 32 Rasterization Operator Units.

Display Graphs

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(No game benchmarks for this combination yet.)

Power Usage and Theoretical Benchmarks

Power Consumption (Max TDP)

GeForce GTX 560 150 Watts
Radeon HD 7870 175 Watts
Difference: 25 Watts (17%)

Memory Bandwidth

The Radeon HD 7870, in theory, should be a small bit faster than the GeForce GTX 560 overall. (explain)

Radeon HD 7870 153600 MB/sec
GeForce GTX 560 128128 MB/sec
Difference: 25472 (20%)

Texel Rate

The Radeon HD 7870 will be much (more or less 76%) faster with regards to texture filtering than the GeForce GTX 560. (explain)

Radeon HD 7870 80000 Mtexels/sec
GeForce GTX 560 45360 Mtexels/sec
Difference: 34640 (76%)

Pixel Rate

If using lots of anti-aliasing is important to you, then the Radeon HD 7870 is superior to the GeForce GTX 560, and very much so. (explain)

Radeon HD 7870 32000 Mpixels/sec
GeForce GTX 560 25920 Mpixels/sec
Difference: 6080 (23%)

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

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GeForce GTX 560

Amazon.com

Radeon HD 7870

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

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Model GeForce GTX 560 Radeon HD 7870
Manufacturer nVidia AMD
Year May 2011 March 2012
Code Name GF114 Pitcairn XT
Fab Process 40 nm 28 nm
Bus PCIe 2.0 x16 PCIe 3.0 x16
Memory 1024 MB 2048 MB
Core Speed 810 MHz 1000 MHz
Shader Speed 1600 MHz (N/A) MHz
Memory Speed 4004 MHz 4800 MHz
Unified Shaders 336 1280
Texture Mapping Units 56 80
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 4.1 OpenGL 4.2
Power (Max TDP) 150 watts 175 watts
Shader Model 5.0 5.0
Bandwidth 128128 MB/sec 153600 MB/sec
Texel Rate 45360 Mtexels/sec 80000 Mtexels/sec
Pixel Rate 25920 Mpixels/sec 32000 Mpixels/sec

Memory Bandwidth: Bandwidth is the largest amount of information (in units of megabytes per second) that can be moved across the external memory interface in one second. It is calculated by multiplying the interface width by its memory speed. If it uses DDR type RAM, it must be multiplied by 2 once again. If it uses DDR5, multiply by ANOTHER 2x. The higher the memory bandwidth, the better the card will be in general. It especially helps with anti-aliasing, HDR and high resolutions.

Texel Rate: Texel rate is the maximum amount of texture map elements (texels) that can be processed in one second. This is worked out by multiplying the total texture units of the card by the core speed of the chip. The higher the texel rate, the better the 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 most pixels that the graphics chip could possibly record to its local memory in a second - measured in millions of pixels per second. The number is calculated by multiplying the amount of Render Output Units by the the card's clock speed. ROPs (Raster Operations Pipelines - sometimes also referred to as Render Output Units) are responsible for drawing the pixels (image) on the screen. The actual pixel output rate is also dependant 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 get to the maximum fill rate.

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