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GeForce GTX 660 vs Radeon HD 5970

Intro

The GeForce GTX 660 features a clock speed of 980 MHz and a GDDR5 memory frequency of 1502 MHz. It also uses a 192-bit bus, and uses a 28 nm design. It is comprised of 960 SPUs, 80 TAUs, and 24 ROPs.

Compare those specs to the Radeon HD 5970, which comes with a GPU core clock speed of 725 MHz, and 1024 MB of GDDR5 memory set to run at 1000 MHz through a 256-bit bus. It also features 1600 Stream Processors, 160 TAUs, and 64 Raster Operation Units.

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Power Usage and Theoretical Benchmarks

Power Consumption (Max TDP)

GeForce GTX 660 140 Watts
Radeon HD 5970 294 Watts
Difference: 154 Watts (110%)

Memory Bandwidth

The Radeon HD 5970, in theory, should perform much faster than the GeForce GTX 660 overall. (explain)

Radeon HD 5970 256000 MB/sec
GeForce GTX 660 144192 MB/sec
Difference: 111808 (78%)

Texel Rate

The Radeon HD 5970 will be a lot (about 196%) better at AF than the GeForce GTX 660. (explain)

Radeon HD 5970 232000 Mtexels/sec
GeForce GTX 660 78400 Mtexels/sec
Difference: 153600 (196%)

Pixel Rate

The Radeon HD 5970 is a lot (more or less 295%) better at full screen anti-aliasing than the GeForce GTX 660, and should be capable of handling higher resolutions without losing too much performance. (explain)

Radeon HD 5970 92800 Mpixels/sec
GeForce GTX 660 23520 Mpixels/sec
Difference: 69280 (295%)

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.

One or more cards in this comparison are multi-core. This means that their bandwidth, texel and pixel rates are theoretically doubled - this does not mean the card will actually perform twice as fast, but only that it should in theory be able to. Actual game benchmarks will give a more accurate idea of what it's capable of.

Price Comparison

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GeForce GTX 660

Amazon.com

Check prices at:

Radeon HD 5970

Amazon.com

Check prices at:

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 660 Radeon HD 5970
Manufacturer nVidia AMD
Year September 2012 November 2009
Code Name GK106 Hemlock XT
Memory 2048 MB 1024 MB (x2)
Core Speed 980 MHz 725 MHz (x2)
Memory Speed 6008 MHz 4000 MHz (x2)
Power (Max TDP) 140 watts 294 watts
Bandwidth 144192 MB/sec 256000 MB/sec
Texel Rate 78400 Mtexels/sec 232000 Mtexels/sec
Pixel Rate 23520 Mpixels/sec 92800 Mpixels/sec
Unified Shaders 960 1600 (x2)
Texture Mapping Units 80 160 (x2)
Render Output Units 24 64 (x2)
Bus Type GDDR5 GDDR5
Bus Width 192-bit 256-bit (x2)
Fab Process 28 nm 40 nm
Transistors 2540 million 2154 million
Bus PCIe 3.0 x16 PCIe x16
DirectX Version DirectX 11.0 DirectX 11
OpenGL Version OpenGL 4.3 OpenGL 4.1

Memory Bandwidth: Bandwidth is the max amount of data (counted in megabytes per second) that can be transferred across the external memory interface in a second. It is worked out by multiplying the interface width by the speed of its memory. If it uses DDR RAM, it should be multiplied by 2 once again. If DDR5, multiply by 4 instead. The higher the bandwidth is, 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 can be applied in one second. This figure is worked out by multiplying the total number of texture units by the core clock speed of the chip. The higher this number, the better the graphics card will be at handling texture filtering (anisotropic filtering - AF). It is measured in millions of texels per second.

Pixel Rate: Pixel rate is the maximum amount of pixels the video card can possibly record to the local memory per second - measured in millions of pixels per second. The number is calculated by multiplying the amount of colour ROPs by the the card's clock speed. ROPs (Raster Operations Pipelines - also sometimes called Render Output Units) are responsible for filling the screen with pixels (the image). The actual pixel output rate also depends on quite a few other factors, especially the memory bandwidth of the card - the lower the bandwidth is, the lower the potential to reach the maximum fill rate.

Display Prices

Hide Prices

GeForce GTX 660

Amazon.com

Check prices at:

Radeon HD 5970

Amazon.com

Check prices at:

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.

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