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Geforce GTX 680 vs Radeon HD 5870

Intro

The Geforce GTX 680 has a clock speed of 1006 MHz and a GDDR5 memory frequency of 1502 MHz. It also features a 256-bit memory bus, and uses a 28 nm design. It is comprised of 1536 SPUs, 128 Texture Address Units, and 32 Raster Operation Units.

Compare those specs to the Radeon HD 5870, which comes with core speeds of 850 MHz on the GPU, and 1200 MHz on the 1024 MB of GDDR5 memory. It features 1600(320x5) SPUs as well as 80 Texture Address Units and 32 Rasterization Operator Units.

Display Graphs

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Power Usage and Theoretical Benchmarks

Power Consumption (Max TDP)

Radeon HD 5870 188 Watts
Geforce GTX 680 195 Watts
Difference: 7 Watts (4%)

Memory Bandwidth

In theory, the Geforce GTX 680 should be 25% faster than the Radeon HD 5870 in general, because of its greater data rate. (explain)

Geforce GTX 680 192256 MB/sec
Radeon HD 5870 153600 MB/sec
Difference: 38656 (25%)

Texel Rate

The Geforce GTX 680 will be much (more or less 89%) faster with regards to anisotropic filtering than the Radeon HD 5870. (explain)

Geforce GTX 680 128768 Mtexels/sec
Radeon HD 5870 68000 Mtexels/sec
Difference: 60768 (89%)

Pixel Rate

If running with lots of anti-aliasing is important to you, then the Geforce GTX 680 is a better choice, though not by far. (explain)

Geforce GTX 680 32192 Mpixels/sec
Radeon HD 5870 27200 Mpixels/sec
Difference: 4992 (18%)

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

Amazon.com

Radeon HD 5870

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

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Model Geforce GTX 680 Radeon HD 5870
Manufacturer nVidia AMD
Year March 2012 September 23, 2009
Code Name GK104 Cypress XT
Memory 2048 MB 1024 MB
Core Speed 1006 MHz 850 MHz
Memory Speed 6008 MHz 4800 MHz
Power (Max TDP) 195 watts 188 watts
Bandwidth 192256 MB/sec 153600 MB/sec
Texel Rate 128768 Mtexels/sec 68000 Mtexels/sec
Pixel Rate 32192 Mpixels/sec 27200 Mpixels/sec
Unified Shaders 1536 1600(320x5)
Texture Mapping Units 128 80
Render Output Units 32 32
Bus Type GDDR5 GDDR5
Bus Width 256-bit 256-bit
Fab Process 28 nm 40 nm
Transistors 3540 million 2154 million
Bus PCIe 3.0 x16 PCIe 2.1 x16
DirectX Version DirectX 11.0 DirectX 11
OpenGL Version OpenGL 4.2 OpenGL 3.2

Memory Bandwidth: Memory bandwidth is the maximum amount of data (counted in MB per second) that can be transported past the external memory interface within a second. It is calculated by multiplying the bus width by the speed of its memory. If it uses DDR RAM, it must be multiplied by 2 once again. If DDR5, multiply by ANOTHER 2x. The higher the bandwidth is, the better the card will be in general. It especially helps with anti-aliasing, High Dynamic Range and higher screen resolutions.

Texel Rate: Texel rate is the maximum amount of texture map elements (texels) that can be processed in one second. This figure is calculated by multiplying the total texture units by the core speed of the chip. The higher the texel rate, the better the graphics card will be at handling texture filtering (anisotropic filtering - AF). It is measured in millions of texels in one second.

Pixel Rate: Pixel rate is the maximum amount of pixels the graphics card can possibly write to its local memory in one second - measured in millions of pixels per second. The figure is worked out by multiplying the number of ROPs by the clock speed of the card. ROPs (Raster Operations Pipelines - aka Render Output Units) are responsible for drawing the pixels (image) on the screen. The actual pixel output rate also depends on quite a few other factors, most notably the memory bandwidth of the card - the lower the bandwidth is, the lower the ability to reach the max fill rate.

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