A Question

Compare any two graphics cards:
VS

Radeon HD 6870 vs Radeon HD 7790

Intro

The Radeon HD 6870 comes with a GPU core clock speed of 900 MHz, and the 1024 MB of GDDR5 RAM runs at 1050 MHz through a 256-bit bus. It also is comprised of 1120 SPUs, 56 Texture Address Units, and 32 Raster Operation Units.

Compare all that to the Radeon HD 7790, which comes with a clock speed of 1000 MHz and a GDDR5 memory frequency of 1500 MHz. It also features a 128-bit memory bus, and uses a 28 nm design. It is made up of 896 SPUs, 56 Texture Address Units, and 16 ROPs.

Display Graphs

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(No game benchmarks for this combination yet.)

Power Usage and Theoretical Benchmarks

Power Consumption (Max TDP)

Radeon HD 7790 85 Watts
Radeon HD 6870 151 Watts
Difference: 66 Watts (78%)

Memory Bandwidth

Theoretically, the Radeon HD 6870 should perform quite a bit faster than the Radeon HD 7790 in general. (explain)

Radeon HD 6870 134400 MB/sec
Radeon HD 7790 96000 MB/sec
Difference: 38400 (40%)

Texel Rate

The Radeon HD 7790 should be a little bit (more or less 11%) better at texture filtering than the Radeon HD 6870. (explain)

Radeon HD 7790 56000 Mtexels/sec
Radeon HD 6870 50400 Mtexels/sec
Difference: 5600 (11%)

Pixel Rate

If using a high screen resolution is important to you, then the Radeon HD 6870 is the winner, by a large margin. (explain)

Radeon HD 6870 28800 Mpixels/sec
Radeon HD 7790 16000 Mpixels/sec
Difference: 12800 (80%)

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

Display Prices

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Radeon HD 6870

Amazon.com

Radeon HD 7790

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 Radeon HD 6870 Radeon HD 7790
Manufacturer AMD AMD
Year October 2010 March 2013
Code Name Barts XT Bonaire XT
Fab Process 40 nm 28 nm
Bus PCIe x16 PCIe 3.0 x16
Memory 1024 MB 1024 MB
Core Speed 900 MHz 1000 MHz
Shader Speed N/A MHz (N/A) MHz
Memory Speed 4200 MHz 6000 MHz
Unified Shaders 1120 896
Texture Mapping Units 56 56
Render Output Units 32 16
Bus Type GDDR5 GDDR5
Bus Width 256-bit 128-bit
DirectX Version DirectX 11 DirectX 11.1
OpenGL Version OpenGL 4.1 OpenGL 4.3
Power (Max TDP) 151 watts 85 watts
Shader Model 5.0 5.0
Bandwidth 134400 MB/sec 96000 MB/sec
Texel Rate 50400 Mtexels/sec 56000 Mtexels/sec
Pixel Rate 28800 Mpixels/sec 16000 Mpixels/sec

Memory Bandwidth: Bandwidth is the largest amount of data (measured in MB per second) that can be moved across the external memory interface in a second. It's calculated by multiplying the card's bus width by its memory speed. If the card has DDR memory, it should be multiplied by 2 again. If DDR5, multiply by ANOTHER 2x. The better the card's memory bandwidth, the faster the card will be in general. It especially helps with AA, HDR and high resolutions.

Texel Rate: Texel rate is the maximum texture map elements (texels) that can be processed per second. This figure is calculated by multiplying the total texture units of the card by the core clock speed of the chip. The better the texel rate, the better the video card will be at handling 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 video card could possibly record to its local memory per second - measured in millions of pixels per second. The figure is calculated by multiplying the amount of Raster Operations Pipelines by the the card's 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 rate also depends on lots of other factors, most notably the memory bandwidth of the card - the lower the bandwidth is, the lower the potential to reach the max fill rate.

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