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Geforce GTX 680 vs Radeon HD 7870


The Geforce GTX 680 uses a 28 nm design. nVidia has clocked the core frequency at 1006 MHz. The GDDR5 RAM runs at a speed of 1502 MHz on this particular card. It features 1536 SPUs along with 128 TAUs and 32 ROPs.

Compare those specifications to the Radeon HD 7870, which has core clock speeds of 1000 MHz on the GPU, and 1200 MHz on the 2048 MB of GDDR5 RAM. It features 1280 SPUs along with 80 TAUs and 32 Rasterization Operator Units.

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Power Usage and Theoretical Benchmarks

Power Consumption (Max TDP)

Radeon HD 7870 175 Watts
Geforce GTX 680 195 Watts
Difference: 20 Watts (11%)

Memory Bandwidth

As far as performance goes, the Geforce GTX 680 should theoretically be a lot better than the Radeon HD 7870 overall. (explain)

Geforce GTX 680 192256 MB/sec
Radeon HD 7870 153600 MB/sec
Difference: 38656 (25%)

Texel Rate

The Geforce GTX 680 will be much (approximately 61%) faster with regards to anisotropic filtering than the Radeon HD 7870. (explain)

Geforce GTX 680 128768 Mtexels/sec
Radeon HD 7870 80000 Mtexels/sec
Difference: 48768 (61%)

Pixel Rate

If using a high resolution is important to you, then the Geforce GTX 680 is the winner, though not by far. (explain)

Geforce GTX 680 32192 Mpixels/sec
Radeon HD 7870 32000 Mpixels/sec
Difference: 192 (1%)

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 680

Radeon HD 7870

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.


Display Specifications

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Model Geforce GTX 680 Radeon HD 7870
Manufacturer nVidia AMD
Year March 2012 March 2012
Code Name GK104 Pitcairn XT
Memory 2048 MB 2048 MB
Core Speed 1006 MHz 1000 MHz
Memory Speed 6008 MHz 4800 MHz
Power (Max TDP) 195 watts 175 watts
Bandwidth 192256 MB/sec 153600 MB/sec
Texel Rate 128768 Mtexels/sec 80000 Mtexels/sec
Pixel Rate 32192 Mpixels/sec 32000 Mpixels/sec
Unified Shaders 1536 1280
Texture Mapping Units 128 80
Render Output Units 32 32
Bus Type GDDR5 GDDR5
Bus Width 256-bit 256-bit
Fab Process 28 nm 28 nm
Transistors 3540 million 2800 million
Bus PCIe 3.0 x16 PCIe 3.0 x16
DirectX Version DirectX 11.0 DirectX 11.1
OpenGL Version OpenGL 4.2 OpenGL 4.2

Memory Bandwidth: Bandwidth is the largest amount of data (in units of megabytes per second) that can be moved over the external memory interface within a second. It's worked out by multiplying the card's bus width by its memory speed. If it uses DDR type RAM, it should be multiplied by 2 again. If it uses DDR5, multiply by 4 instead. The higher the memory bandwidth, the better the card will be in general. It especially helps with AA, HDR and high resolutions.

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

Pixel Rate: Pixel rate is the most pixels the graphics card could possibly record to the local memory in a second - measured in millions of pixels per second. The number is calculated by multiplying the amount of ROPs 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 rate also depends on lots of other factors, especially the memory bandwidth of the card - the lower the bandwidth is, the lower the ability to get to the max fill rate.


4 Responses to “Geforce GTX 680 vs Radeon HD 7870”
Vlad says:

The 680 is definitely the way to go! Yet its suprisingly cheaper too. Hence why its already sold out and nowhere to be found... Still not that much different in price from the GTX 580. And the 7970 right now is still more expensive. 680 FTW!! :D

Anonymous says:

waho niente male sul pixel addiritura allora la 7970 e piu potente della 7950 ho cosa...

MikEms says:

Thanks to its 1000MHz clock speed, the Radeon HD 7870 has higher pixel fill and rasterization rates than even the Radeon HD 7970. That's because the two cards have the same number of ROPs, and they can both process two triangles per clock, but the 7970 is only clocked at 925MHz. The 7870 does have more modest texture filtering capabilities, though, not to mention substantially lower shader throughput and memory bandwidth. Source :

Random guy says:

The 7870 has better price performance
7870 = I found an OC'd version for 178.98 euros on PIXmania (sapphire 2gb)
680 = Is 300 euros on it's cheapest and overclocking is harder and less effective on a 680

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