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 speed at 725 MHz. The GDDR5 memory runs at a speed of 1000 MHz on this particular card. It features 1600 SPUs as well as 160 Texture Address Units and 64 Rasterization Operator Units.
Compare all that to the Radeon HD 7870, which comes with a clock speed of 1000 MHz and a GDDR5 memory speed of 1200 MHz. It also features a 256-bit memory 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)
Theoretically speaking, the Radeon HD 5970 should be a lot faster than the Radeon HD 7870 in general. (explain)
Texel RateThe Radeon HD 5970 will be quite a bit (approximately 190%) better at texture filtering than the Radeon HD 7870. (explain)
Pixel RateThe Radeon HD 5970 is quite a bit (approximately 190%) faster with regards to full screen anti-aliasing than the Radeon HD 7870, and also should be capable of handling higher resolutions more effectively. (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.
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.
Memory Bandwidth: Bandwidth is the largest amount of data (measured in megabytes per second) that can be transported past the external memory interface in one second. It's calculated by multiplying the bus width by its memory speed. If it uses DDR type RAM, it should be multiplied by 2 once again. If it uses DDR5, multiply by 4 instead. The higher the card's memory bandwidth, the faster the card will be in general. It especially helps with AA, HDR and high resolutions.
Texel Rate: Texel rate is the maximum amount of texture map elements (texels) that can be processed per second. This is calculated by multiplying the total amount of texture units by the core clock speed of the chip. The higher this number, the better the card will be at texture filtering (anisotropic filtering - AF). It is measured in millions of texels in a second.
Pixel Rate: Pixel rate is the most pixels the graphics card could possibly record to its local memory in a second - measured in millions of pixels per second. The figure 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 outputting the pixels (image) to the screen. The actual pixel fill rate is also dependant on quite a few other factors, most notably the memory bandwidth of the card - the lower the bandwidth is, the lower the ability to get to the max fill rate.