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Radeon HD 6870 vs Radeon HD 7870

Intro

The Radeon HD 6870 has a clock frequency of 900 MHz and a GDDR5 memory speed of 1050 MHz. It also features a 256-bit memory bus, and makes use of a 40 nm design. It is comprised of 1120 SPUs, 56 Texture Address Units, and 32 ROPs.

Compare all of that to the Radeon HD 7870, which comes with a GPU core clock speed of 1000 MHz, and 2048 MB of GDDR5 memory running at 1200 MHz through a 256-bit bus. It also is comprised of 1280 Stream Processors, 80 Texture Address Units, and 32 ROPs.

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Benchmarks

These are real-world performance benchmarks that were submitted by Hardware Compare users. The scores seen here are the average of all benchmarks submitted for each respective test and hardware.

3DMark Fire Strike Graphics Score

Radeon HD 7870 6230 points
Radeon HD 6870 2870 points
Difference: 3360 (117%)

Power Usage and Theoretical Benchmarks

Power Consumption (Max TDP)

Radeon HD 6870 151 Watts
Radeon HD 7870 175 Watts
Difference: 24 Watts (16%)

Memory Bandwidth

The Radeon HD 7870 should in theory perform just a bit faster than the Radeon HD 6870 overall. (explain)

Radeon HD 7870 153600 MB/sec
Radeon HD 6870 134400 MB/sec
Difference: 19200 (14%)

Texel Rate

The Radeon HD 7870 is a lot (about 59%) more effective at texture filtering than the Radeon HD 6870. (explain)

Radeon HD 7870 80000 Mtexels/sec
Radeon HD 6870 50400 Mtexels/sec
Difference: 29600 (59%)

Pixel Rate

The Radeon HD 7870 will be just a bit (more or less 11%) more effective at anti-aliasing than the Radeon HD 6870, and also will be able to handle higher resolutions without slowing down too much. (explain)

Radeon HD 7870 32000 Mpixels/sec
Radeon HD 6870 28800 Mpixels/sec
Difference: 3200 (11%)

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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Radeon HD 6870

Amazon.com

Check prices at:

Radeon HD 7870

Amazon.com

Check prices at:

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 Radeon HD 6870 Radeon HD 7870
Manufacturer AMD AMD
Year October 2010 March 2012
Code Name Barts XT Pitcairn XT
Memory 1024 MB 2048 MB
Core Speed 900 MHz 1000 MHz
Memory Speed 4200 MHz 4800 MHz
Power (Max TDP) 151 watts 175 watts
Bandwidth 134400 MB/sec 153600 MB/sec
Texel Rate 50400 Mtexels/sec 80000 Mtexels/sec
Pixel Rate 28800 Mpixels/sec 32000 Mpixels/sec
Unified Shaders 1120 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 1700 million 2800 million
Bus PCIe 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 maximum amount of data (counted in megabytes per second) that can be moved across the external memory interface in a second. It is calculated by multiplying the card's interface width by the speed of its memory. If the card has DDR type memory, it must be multiplied by 2 again. If it uses DDR5, multiply by ANOTHER 2x. The better the card's memory bandwidth, the better the card will be in general. It especially helps with anti-aliasing, High Dynamic Range and high resolutions.

Texel Rate: Texel rate is the maximum texture map elements (texels) that can be processed per second. This is worked out by multiplying the total number of texture units of the card by the core clock 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 maximum number of pixels the video card can possibly write to its local memory per second - measured in millions of pixels per second. Pixel rate is calculated by multiplying the amount of colour ROPs by the the card's 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 lots of other factors, most notably the memory bandwidth of the card - the lower the bandwidth is, the lower the ability to reach the maximum fill rate.

Display Prices

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Radeon HD 6870

Amazon.com

Check prices at:

Radeon HD 7870

Amazon.com

Check prices at:

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.

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