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GeForce GTX 660 vs Radeon HD 6970

Intro

The GeForce GTX 660 uses a 28 nm design. nVidia has clocked the core frequency at 980 MHz. The GDDR5 RAM is set to run at a frequency of 1502 MHz on this particular card. It features 960 SPUs as well as 80 TAUs and 24 ROPs.

Compare those specifications to the Radeon HD 6970, which makes use of a 40 nm design. AMD has set the core frequency at 880 MHz. The GDDR5 RAM runs at a speed of 1375 MHz on this particular model. It features 1536 SPUs along with 96 TAUs and 32 ROPs.

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Benchmarks

These are real-world performance benchmarks that were submitted by Hardware Compare users. The scores seen here are the average of all benchmarks submitted for each respective test and hardware.

3DMark Fire Strike Graphics Score

GeForce GTX 660 5063 points
Radeon HD 6970 3470 points
Difference: 1593 (46%)

Power Usage and Theoretical Benchmarks

Power Consumption (Max TDP)

GeForce GTX 660 140 Watts
Radeon HD 6970 250 Watts
Difference: 110 Watts (79%)

Memory Bandwidth

The Radeon HD 6970 should in theory perform much faster than the GeForce GTX 660 overall. (explain)

Radeon HD 6970 176000 MB/sec
GeForce GTX 660 144192 MB/sec
Difference: 31808 (22%)

Texel Rate

The Radeon HD 6970 should be just a bit (about 8%) more effective at AF than the GeForce GTX 660. (explain)

Radeon HD 6970 84480 Mtexels/sec
GeForce GTX 660 78400 Mtexels/sec
Difference: 6080 (8%)

Pixel Rate

If using high levels of AA is important to you, then the Radeon HD 6970 is superior to the GeForce GTX 660, not by a very large margin though. (explain)

Radeon HD 6970 28160 Mpixels/sec
GeForce GTX 660 23520 Mpixels/sec
Difference: 4640 (20%)

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 660

Amazon.com

Check prices at:

Radeon HD 6970

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 6970
Manufacturer nVidia AMD
Year September 2012 December 2010
Code Name GK106 Cayman XT
Memory 2048 MB 2048 MB
Core Speed 980 MHz 880 MHz
Memory Speed 6008 MHz 5500 MHz
Power (Max TDP) 140 watts 250 watts
Bandwidth 144192 MB/sec 176000 MB/sec
Texel Rate 78400 Mtexels/sec 84480 Mtexels/sec
Pixel Rate 23520 Mpixels/sec 28160 Mpixels/sec
Unified Shaders 960 1536
Texture Mapping Units 80 96
Render Output Units 24 32
Bus Type GDDR5 GDDR5
Bus Width 192-bit 256-bit
Fab Process 28 nm 40 nm
Transistors 2540 million 2640 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: Memory bandwidth is the max amount of data (measured in MB per second) that can be moved past the external memory interface in a second. It's calculated by multiplying the card's interface width by the speed of its memory. If the card has DDR RAM, it should be multiplied by 2 again. If it uses DDR5, multiply by ANOTHER 2x. The higher the memory bandwidth, the better the card will be in general. It especially helps with anti-aliasing, HDR and higher screen resolutions.

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

Pixel Rate: Pixel rate is the maximum number of pixels the graphics card could possibly record to the local memory in a second - measured in millions of pixels per second. Pixel rate is calculated by multiplying the number of ROPs by the clock speed of the card. ROPs (Raster Operations Pipelines - aka Render Output Units) are responsible for filling the screen with pixels (the image). The actual pixel fill 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 get to the max fill rate.

Display Prices

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GeForce GTX 660

Amazon.com

Check prices at:

Radeon HD 6970

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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