Compare any two graphics cards:
Radeon HD 5970 vs Radeon HD 7870
IntroThe Radeon HD 5970 makes use of a 40 nm design. AMD has set the core frequency at 725 MHz. The GDDR5 memory is set to run at a frequency of 1000 MHz on this model. It features 1600 SPUs as well as 160 TAUs and 64 ROPs.
Compare those specifications to the Radeon HD 7870, which features a core clock frequency of 1000 MHz and a GDDR5 memory frequency of 1200 MHz. It also features a 256-bit bus, and makes use of a 28 nm design. It features 1280 SPUs, 80 Texture Address Units, and 32 ROPs.
Power Usage and Theoretical Benchmarks
Power Consumption (Max TDP)
As far as performance goes, the Radeon HD 5970 should in theory be a lot better than the Radeon HD 7870 overall. (explain)
Texel RateThe Radeon HD 5970 will be quite a bit (about 190%) better at AF than the Radeon HD 7870. (explain)
Pixel RateThe Radeon HD 5970 should be quite a bit (about 190%) faster with regards to AA than the Radeon HD 7870, and also able to handle higher resolutions better. (explain)
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.
One or more cards in this comparison are multi-core. This means that their bandwidth, texel and pixel rates are theoretically doubled - this does not mean the card will actually perform twice as fast, but only that it should in theory be able to. Actual game benchmarks will give a more accurate idea of what it's capable of.
Radeon HD 5970
Radeon HD 7870
Memory Bandwidth: Memory bandwidth is the largest amount of data (measured in megabytes per second) that can be moved over the external memory interface in one second. It's worked out by multiplying the interface width by its memory speed. In the case of DDR RAM, it should be multiplied by 2 once again. If it uses DDR5, multiply by ANOTHER 2x. The better the bandwidth is, 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 processed in one second. This figure is calculated 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 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 the video card can possibly record to its local memory per second - measured in millions of pixels per second. The figure is worked out by multiplying the number of Render Output Units by the the core clock speed. ROPs (Raster Operations Pipelines - also called 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 - the lower the bandwidth is, the lower the potential to reach the max fill rate.
Radeon HD 5970
Radeon HD 7870