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GeForce GTX 660 vs Radeon HD 7870

Intro

The GeForce GTX 660 has a clock frequency of 980 MHz and a GDDR5 memory frequency of 1502 MHz. It also features a 192-bit memory bus, and makes use of a 28 nm design. It features 960 SPUs, 80 TAUs, and 24 Raster Operation Units.

Compare that to the Radeon HD 7870, which has GPU core speed of 1000 MHz, and 2048 MB of GDDR5 RAM set to run at 1200 MHz through a 256-bit bus. It also features 1280 Stream Processors, 80 TAUs, and 32 Raster Operation Units.

(No game benchmarks for this combination yet.)

Power Usage and Theoretical Benchmarks

Power Consumption (Max TDP)

GeForce GTX 660 140 Watts
Radeon HD 7870 175 Watts
Difference: 35 Watts (25%)

Memory Bandwidth

In theory, the Radeon HD 7870 should be just a bit faster than the GeForce GTX 660 overall. (explain)

Radeon HD 7870 153600 MB/sec
GeForce GTX 660 144192 MB/sec
Difference: 9408 (7%)

Texel Rate

The Radeon HD 7870 will be a small bit (more or less 2%) faster with regards to texture filtering than the GeForce GTX 660. (explain)

Radeon HD 7870 80000 Mtexels/sec
GeForce GTX 660 78400 Mtexels/sec
Difference: 1600 (2%)

Pixel Rate

The Radeon HD 7870 will be much (about 36%) more effective at anti-aliasing than the GeForce GTX 660, and will be capable of handling higher resolutions better. (explain)

Radeon HD 7870 32000 Mpixels/sec
GeForce GTX 660 23520 Mpixels/sec
Difference: 8480 (36%)

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 660

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 660 Radeon HD 7870
Manufacturer nVidia AMD
Year September 2012 March 2012
Code Name GK106 Pitcairn XT
Fab Process 28 nm 28 nm
Bus PCIe 3.0 x16 PCIe 3.0 x16
Memory 2048 MB 2048 MB
Core Speed 980 MHz 1000 MHz
Shader Speed 980 MHz (N/A) MHz
Memory Speed 1502 MHz (6008 MHz effective) 1200 MHz (4800 MHz effective)
Unified Shaders 960 1280
Texture Mapping Units 80 80
Render Output Units 24 32
Bus Type GDDR5 GDDR5
Bus Width 192-bit 256-bit
DirectX Version DirectX 11.0 DirectX 11.1
OpenGL Version OpenGL 4.3 OpenGL 4.2
Power (Max TDP) 140 watts 175 watts
Shader Model 5.0 5.0
Bandwidth 144192 MB/sec 153600 MB/sec
Texel Rate 78400 Mtexels/sec 80000 Mtexels/sec
Pixel Rate 23520 Mpixels/sec 32000 Mpixels/sec

Memory Bandwidth: Memory bandwidth is the max amount of data (counted in MB per second) that can be transferred over the external memory interface within a second. The number is calculated by multiplying the bus width by its memory clock speed. In the case of DDR memory, it should be multiplied by 2 once again. If it uses DDR5, multiply by ANOTHER 2x. The higher the bandwidth is, the better the card will be in general. It especially helps with anti-aliasing, HDR and high resolutions.

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

Pixel Rate: Pixel rate is the maximum amount of pixels the graphics card could possibly record to the 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 the core clock speed. ROPs (Raster Operations Pipelines - sometimes also referred to as Render Output Units) are responsible for drawing the pixels (image) on the screen. The actual pixel fill rate also depends 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 max fill rate.

Comments

2 Responses to “GeForce GTX 660 vs Radeon HD 7870”
[...] von AMD. Preislich auch um die 200€. Wenn du einen Vergleich deiner 660 und der 7870 möchtest Vergleich 660 mit 7870 Hierbei muss jedoch beachtet werden, das dieser Vergleich nur auf den reinen Daten basiert. [...]
LEEROY says:
HD 7870 is fair bit faster on paper, but the difference is greater in real world applications. Depending on the price (near enough identical in Australia, as of March 2013), go the HD7870. GTX660 is crippled by its memory bandwidth :c

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