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GeForce GTX 480 vs GeForce GTX 660

Intro

The GeForce GTX 480 has a GPU core speed of 700 MHz, and the 1536 MB of GDDR5 RAM is set to run at 924 MHz through a 384-bit bus. It also features 480 Stream Processors, 60 Texture Address Units, and 48 ROPs.

Compare those specifications to the GeForce GTX 660, which makes use of a 28 nm design. nVidia has clocked the core speed at 980 MHz. The GDDR5 memory runs at a frequency of 1502 MHz on this particular card. It features 960 SPUs along with 80 Texture Address Units and 24 Rasterization Operator Units.

Display Graphs

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Power Usage and Theoretical Benchmarks

Power Consumption (Max TDP)

GeForce GTX 660 140 Watts
GeForce GTX 480 250 Watts
Difference: 110 Watts (79%)

Memory Bandwidth

The GeForce GTX 480 should in theory be quite a bit faster than the GeForce GTX 660 overall. (explain)

GeForce GTX 480 177408 MB/sec
GeForce GTX 660 144192 MB/sec
Difference: 33216 (23%)

Texel Rate

The GeForce GTX 660 will be a lot (approximately 87%) more effective at anisotropic filtering than the GeForce GTX 480. (explain)

GeForce GTX 660 78400 Mtexels/sec
GeForce GTX 480 42000 Mtexels/sec
Difference: 36400 (87%)

Pixel Rate

If running with high levels of AA is important to you, then the GeForce GTX 480 is the winner, and very much so. (explain)

GeForce GTX 480 33600 Mpixels/sec
GeForce GTX 660 23520 Mpixels/sec
Difference: 10080 (43%)

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 480

Amazon.com

GeForce GTX 660

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

Display Specifications

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Model GeForce GTX 480 GeForce GTX 660
Manufacturer nVidia nVidia
Year March 2010 September 2012
Code Name GF100 GK106
Memory 1536 MB 2048 MB
Core Speed 700 MHz 980 MHz
Memory Speed 3696 MHz 6008 MHz
Power (Max TDP) 250 watts 140 watts
Bandwidth 177408 MB/sec 144192 MB/sec
Texel Rate 42000 Mtexels/sec 78400 Mtexels/sec
Pixel Rate 33600 Mpixels/sec 23520 Mpixels/sec
Unified Shaders 480 960
Texture Mapping Units 60 80
Render Output Units 48 24
Bus Type GDDR5 GDDR5
Bus Width 384-bit 192-bit
Fab Process 40 nm 28 nm
Transistors 3000 million 2540 million
Bus PCIe x16 PCIe 3.0 x16
DirectX Version DirectX 11 DirectX 11.0
OpenGL Version OpenGL 4.1 OpenGL 4.3

Memory Bandwidth: Bandwidth is the largest amount of information (in units of megabytes per second) that can be transported over the external memory interface in a second. The number is calculated by multiplying the card's interface width by its memory speed. If the card has DDR RAM, it should be multiplied by 2 once again. If DDR5, multiply by 4 instead. The higher the card's memory bandwidth, the better the card will be in general. It especially helps with AA, High Dynamic Range and higher screen resolutions.

Texel Rate: Texel rate is the maximum amount of texture map elements (texels) that are applied per second. This number is worked out by multiplying the total number of texture units of the card by the core speed of the chip. The higher this number, the better the card will be at 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 the graphics card could possibly record to the local memory per second - measured in millions of pixels per second. The number is worked out by multiplying the amount of ROPs by the clock speed of the card. ROPs (Raster Operations Pipelines - also called Render Output Units) are responsible for filling the screen with pixels (the image). The actual pixel output rate also depends on lots of other factors, most notably the memory bandwidth - the lower the bandwidth is, the lower the potential to reach the maximum fill rate.

Comments

2 Responses to “GeForce GTX 480 vs GeForce GTX 660”
Help! I need a new graphics card. says:

[...] £178.39. Looks like a nice graphics card at not an unreasonable price. Comparing the two, using: HWCompare I am not sure my motherboard can cope & would support the GTX 660's Bus requirement: [...]

DasPootisXD says:

I have money for either one and I need help on deciding on which one I should buy. Other question is: what use is texel rate and how important it is?

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