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GeForce GTX 660 vs Radeon HD 5850

Intro

The GeForce GTX 660 has a core clock frequency of 980 MHz and a GDDR5 memory speed of 1502 MHz. It also makes use of a 192-bit memory bus, and uses a 28 nm design. It is made up of 960 SPUs, 80 Texture Address Units, and 24 ROPs.

Compare that to the Radeon HD 5850, which uses a 40 nm design. AMD has clocked the core speed at 725 MHz. The GDDR5 memory is set to run at a frequency of 1000 MHz on this model. It features 1440(288x5) SPUs along with 72 Texture Address Units and 32 Rasterization Operator Units.

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Power Usage and Theoretical Benchmarks

Power Consumption (Max TDP)

GeForce GTX 660 140 Watts
Radeon HD 5850 151 Watts
Difference: 11 Watts (8%)

Memory Bandwidth

The GeForce GTX 660 should in theory perform a small bit faster than the Radeon HD 5850 overall. (explain)

GeForce GTX 660 144192 MB/sec
Radeon HD 5850 128000 MB/sec
Difference: 16192 (13%)

Texel Rate

The GeForce GTX 660 is a lot (approximately 50%) faster with regards to AF than the Radeon HD 5850. (explain)

GeForce GTX 660 78400 Mtexels/sec
Radeon HD 5850 52200 Mtexels/sec
Difference: 26200 (50%)

Pixel Rate

If using high levels of AA is important to you, then the GeForce GTX 660 is the winner, though not by far. (explain)

GeForce GTX 660 23520 Mpixels/sec
Radeon HD 5850 23200 Mpixels/sec
Difference: 320 (1%)

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

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Radeon HD 5850

Amazon.com

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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 5850
Manufacturer nVidia AMD
Year September 2012 September 30, 2009
Code Name GK106 Cypress PRO
Memory 2048 MB 1024 MB
Core Speed 980 MHz 725 MHz
Memory Speed 6008 MHz 4000 MHz
Power (Max TDP) 140 watts 151 watts
Bandwidth 144192 MB/sec 128000 MB/sec
Texel Rate 78400 Mtexels/sec 52200 Mtexels/sec
Pixel Rate 23520 Mpixels/sec 23200 Mpixels/sec
Unified Shaders 960 1440(288x5)
Texture Mapping Units 80 72
Render Output Units 24 32
Bus Type GDDR5 GDDR5
Bus Width 192-bit 256-bit
Fab Process 28 nm 40 nm
Transistors 2540 million 2154 million
Bus PCIe 3.0 x16 PCIe 2.1 x16
DirectX Version DirectX 11.0 DirectX 11
OpenGL Version OpenGL 4.3 OpenGL 3.2

Memory Bandwidth: Memory bandwidth is the largest amount of information (in units of MB per second) that can be transferred over the external memory interface in a second. The number is calculated by multiplying the interface width by the speed of its memory. In the case of DDR type memory, the result should be multiplied by 2 once again. If it uses DDR5, multiply by 4 instead. The higher the memory bandwidth, the faster the card will be in general. It especially helps with anti-aliasing, High Dynamic Range and higher screen resolutions.

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

Pixel Rate: Pixel rate is the maximum amount of pixels that the graphics card can possibly record to its local memory in one second - measured in millions of pixels per second. Pixel rate is worked out by multiplying the number of colour ROPs by the the core clock speed. ROPs (Raster Operations Pipelines - also sometimes called Render Output Units) are responsible for outputting the pixels (image) to the screen. The actual pixel fill rate is also dependant on lots of other factors, most notably the memory bandwidth - the lower the memory bandwidth is, the lower the ability to reach the maximum fill rate.

Display Prices

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GeForce GTX 660

Amazon.com

Check prices at:

Radeon HD 5850

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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