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GeForce GTX 560 vs Radeon HD 7870

Intro

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

Compare those specs to the Radeon HD 7870, which comes with a core clock frequency of 1000 MHz and a GDDR5 memory speed of 1200 MHz. It also uses a 256-bit bus, and uses a 28 nm design. It is comprised of 1280 SPUs, 80 Texture Address Units, and 32 Raster Operation Units.

Display Graphs

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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 perform 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 is quite a bit (approximately 76%) better 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

If running with high levels of AA is important to you, then the Radeon HD 7870 is the winner, 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

Display 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
Memory 1024 MB 2048 MB
Core Speed 810 MHz 1000 MHz
Memory Speed 4004 MHz 4800 MHz
Power (Max TDP) 150 watts 175 watts
Bandwidth 128128 MB/sec 153600 MB/sec
Texel Rate 45360 Mtexels/sec 80000 Mtexels/sec
Pixel Rate 25920 Mpixels/sec 32000 Mpixels/sec
Unified Shaders 336 1280
Texture Mapping Units 56 80
Render Output Units 32 32
Bus Type GDDR5 GDDR5
Bus Width 256-bit 256-bit
Fab Process 40 nm 28 nm
Transistors 1950 million 2800 million
Bus PCIe 2.0 x16 PCIe 3.0 x16
DirectX Version DirectX 11 DirectX 11.1
OpenGL Version OpenGL 4.1 OpenGL 4.2

Memory Bandwidth: Memory bandwidth is the max amount of information (in units of megabytes per second) that can be transported across the external memory interface in one second. It's worked out by multiplying the bus width by its memory speed. If the card has DDR RAM, the result should be multiplied by 2 once again. If it uses DDR5, multiply by 4 instead. The higher the memory bandwidth, the faster the card will be in general. It especially helps with anti-aliasing, High Dynamic Range and higher screen resolutions.

Texel Rate: Texel rate is the maximum texture map elements (texels) that can be applied per second. This number is calculated by multiplying the total number of texture units by the core clock speed of the chip. The higher this number, the better the graphics card will be at handling texture filtering (anisotropic filtering - AF). It is measured in millions of texels per second.

Pixel Rate: Pixel rate is the most pixels the graphics card could possibly record to its local memory per second - measured in millions of pixels per second. The number is worked out by multiplying the amount of colour ROPs by the the core speed of the card. 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 fill rate is also dependant on lots of other factors, most notably the memory bandwidth of the card - the lower the memory bandwidth is, the lower the potential to get to the maximum fill rate.

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