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Geforce GTX 680 vs Radeon HD 5870

Intro

The Geforce GTX 680 uses a 28 nm design. nVidia has clocked the core frequency at 1006 MHz. The GDDR5 memory runs at a frequency of 1502 MHz on this specific model. It features 1536 SPUs as well as 128 Texture Address Units and 32 Rasterization Operator Units.

Compare that to the Radeon HD 5870, which features GPU clock speed of 850 MHz, and 1024 MB of GDDR5 memory set to run at 1200 MHz through a 256-bit bus. It also is comprised of 1600(320x5) SPUs, 80 Texture Address Units, and 32 ROPs.

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

The Geforce GTX 680 should theoretically be quite a bit faster than the Radeon HD 5870 overall. (explain)

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

Texel Rate

The Geforce GTX 680 is a lot (approximately 89%) better at 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 a high screen resolution 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

Geforce GTX 680

Radeon HD 5870

Specifications

Display 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 max amount of data (measured in MB per second) that can be moved past the external memory interface in one second. It's worked out by multiplying the bus width by its memory speed. If it uses DDR type memory, it must be multiplied by 2 once again. If it uses DDR5, multiply by ANOTHER 2x. The higher the memory bandwidth, the faster the card will be in general. It especially helps with anti-aliasing, HDR and high resolutions.

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

Pixel Rate: Pixel rate is the maximum amount of pixels that the graphics chip can possibly write to the 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 core clock speed. ROPs (Raster Operations Pipelines - aka Render Output Units) are responsible for filling the screen with pixels (the image). The actual pixel fill rate is also dependant on many other factors, most notably the memory bandwidth of the card - the lower the memory bandwidth is, the lower the potential to reach the max fill rate.

Geforce GTX 680

Radeon HD 5870

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