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Geforce GTX 680 vs Radeon HD 7870


The Geforce GTX 680 makes use of a 28 nm design. nVidia has clocked the core frequency at 1006 MHz. The GDDR5 RAM runs at a frequency of 1502 MHz on this card. It features 1536 SPUs along with 128 Texture Address Units and 32 Rasterization Operator Units.

Compare those specs to the Radeon HD 7870, which has clock speeds of 1000 MHz on the GPU, and 1200 MHz on the 2048 MB of GDDR5 RAM. It features 1280 SPUs as well as 80 Texture Address Units and 32 ROPs.

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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 in theory be much better than the Radeon HD 7870 in general. (explain)

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

Texel Rate

The Geforce GTX 680 is a lot (about 61%) more effective at AF than the Radeon HD 7870. (explain)

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

Pixel Rate

The Geforce GTX 680 will be just a bit (about 1%) more effective at anti-aliasing than the Radeon HD 7870, and also will be able to handle higher screen resolutions better. (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: Memory bandwidth is the largest amount of data (counted in MB per second) that can be transferred across the external memory interface in a second. It is calculated by multiplying the card's bus width by the speed of its memory. If it uses DDR type memory, it must be multiplied by 2 once again. If DDR5, multiply by 4 instead. The better the bandwidth is, the faster 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 number of texture map elements (texels) that can be applied in one second. This number is worked out by multiplying the total texture units by the core speed of the chip. The better the texel rate, the better the card will be at handling texture filtering (anisotropic filtering - AF). It is measured in millions of texels applied in one second.

Pixel Rate: Pixel rate is the most pixels that the graphics chip can possibly record to its local memory in a second - measured in millions of pixels per second. Pixel rate is calculated by multiplying the amount of Render Output Units by the the core 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 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.


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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