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GeForce GTX 560 vs Radeon HD 7870

Intro

The GeForce GTX 560 has clock speeds of 810 MHz on the GPU, and 1001 MHz on the 1024 MB of GDDR5 memory. It features 336 SPUs as well as 56 TAUs and 32 Rasterization Operator Units.

Compare all that to the Radeon HD 7870, which has GPU core speed of 1000 MHz, and 2048 MB of GDDR5 RAM set to run at 1200 MHz through a 256-bit bus. It also is made up of 1280 SPUs, 80 Texture Address Units, and 32 ROPs.

(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

Theoretically speaking, the Radeon HD 7870 should be 20% quicker than the GeForce GTX 560 overall, due to its greater data rate. (explain)

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

Texel Rate

The Radeon HD 7870 will be quite a bit (approximately 76%) more effective at AF than the GeForce GTX 560. (explain)

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

Pixel Rate

The Radeon HD 7870 is quite a bit (about 23%) faster with regards to anti-aliasing than the GeForce GTX 560, and should be capable of handling higher screen resolutions without slowing down too much. (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

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

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 1001 MHz (4004 MHz effective) 1200 MHz (4800 MHz effective)
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: Memory bandwidth is the largest amount of information (measured in megabytes per second) that can be transferred across the external memory interface within a second. It's calculated by multiplying the card's bus width by its memory speed. In the case of DDR type memory, the result should be multiplied by 2 again. If it uses DDR5, multiply by ANOTHER 2x. The better the bandwidth is, the faster the card will be in general. It especially helps with AA, High Dynamic Range and higher screen resolutions.

Texel Rate: Texel rate is the maximum amount of texture map elements (texels) that are processed per second. This number is calculated by multiplying the total 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 in a second.

Pixel Rate: Pixel rate is the most pixels that the graphics card can possibly record to the local memory in one second - measured in millions of pixels per second. Pixel rate is calculated by multiplying the number 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 rate also depends on lots of other factors, especially the memory bandwidth - the lower the memory bandwidth is, the lower the potential to get to the maximum fill rate.

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