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Geforce GTX 680 vs Radeon HD 7870

Intro

The Geforce GTX 680 makes use of a 28 nm design. nVidia has set the core speed at 1006 MHz. The GDDR5 memory works at a frequency of 1502 MHz on this specific model. It features 1536 SPUs along with 128 Texture Address Units and 32 ROPs.

Compare those specs 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 memory. It features 1280 SPUs as well as 80 TAUs and 32 Rasterization Operator Units.

(No game benchmarks for this combination yet.)

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

In theory, the Geforce GTX 680 will be 25% faster than the Radeon HD 7870 overall, because of its higher data rate. (explain)

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

Texel Rate

The Geforce GTX 680 should be quite a bit (more or less 61%) better at 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 running with a high screen resolution is important to you, then the Geforce GTX 680 is superior to the Radeon HD 7870, not by a very large margin though. (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

Geforce GTX 680

Amazon.com

Radeon HD 7870

Amazon.com

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

Model Geforce GTX 680 Radeon HD 7870
Manufacturer nVidia AMD
Year March 2012 March 2012
Code Name GK104 Pitcairn XT
Fab Process 28 nm 28 nm
Bus PCIe 3.0 x16 PCIe 3.0 x16
Memory 2048 MB 2048 MB
Core Speed 1006 MHz 1000 MHz
Shader Speed 1006 MHz (N/A) MHz
Memory Speed 1502 MHz (6008 MHz effective) 1200 MHz (4800 MHz effective)
Unified Shaders 1536 1280
Texture Mapping Units 128 80
Render Output Units 32 32
Bus Type GDDR5 GDDR5
Bus Width 256-bit 256-bit
DirectX Version DirectX 11.0 DirectX 11.1
OpenGL Version OpenGL 4.2 OpenGL 4.2
Power (Max TDP) 195 watts 175 watts
Shader Model 5.0 5.0
Bandwidth 192256 MB/sec 153600 MB/sec
Texel Rate 128768 Mtexels/sec 80000 Mtexels/sec
Pixel Rate 32192 Mpixels/sec 32000 Mpixels/sec

Memory Bandwidth: Memory bandwidth is the max amount of information (measured in MB per second) that can be transferred past the external memory interface in one second. It's calculated by multiplying the interface width by its memory clock speed. In the case of DDR type RAM, it must be multiplied by 2 again. If DDR5, multiply by ANOTHER 2x. The higher the bandwidth is, the faster the card will be in general. It especially helps with AA, HDR and higher screen resolutions.

Texel Rate: Texel rate is the maximum amount of texture map elements (texels) that are applied per second. This figure is worked out by multiplying the total texture units by the core speed of the chip. The higher the texel rate, 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 that the graphics chip can possibly write to the local memory in one second - measured in millions of pixels per second. Pixel rate is worked out by multiplying the number of ROPs by the the core speed of the card. ROPs (Raster Operations Pipelines - aka Render Output Units) are responsible for filling the screen with pixels (the image). The actual pixel output rate is also dependant on quite a few other factors, most notably the memory bandwidth of the card - the lower the memory bandwidth is, the lower the potential to get to the max fill rate.

Comments

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 : http://techreport.com/articles.x/22573/2
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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