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Radeon HD 6870 vs Radeon HD 7790

Intro

The Radeon HD 6870 features a core clock frequency of 900 MHz and a GDDR5 memory frequency of 1050 MHz. It also makes use of a 256-bit bus, and uses a 40 nm design. It features 1120 SPUs, 56 Texture Address Units, and 32 ROPs.

Compare all that to the Radeon HD 7790, which makes use of a 28 nm design. AMD has set the core speed at 1000 MHz. The GDDR5 RAM runs at a frequency of 1500 MHz on this specific model. It features 896 SPUs as well as 56 Texture Address Units and 16 ROPs.

(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

The Radeon HD 6870 should in theory be quite a bit faster than the Radeon HD 7790 overall. (explain)

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

Texel Rate

The Radeon HD 7790 will be just a bit (approximately 11%) faster with regards to AF than the Radeon HD 6870. (explain)

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

Pixel Rate

If running with lots of anti-aliasing is important to you, then the Radeon HD 6870 is superior to the Radeon HD 7790, 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

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

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 1050 MHz (4200 MHz effective) 1500 MHz (6000 MHz effective)
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 information (measured in MB per second) that can be transported past the external memory interface in one second. It is calculated by multiplying the card's interface width by the speed of its memory. If it uses DDR type RAM, it should be multiplied by 2 again. If DDR5, multiply by ANOTHER 2x. The higher the memory bandwidth, the better 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 are applied in one second. This number is worked out by multiplying the total amount 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 processed per second.

Pixel Rate: Pixel rate is the maximum amount of pixels the video card could possibly record to its local memory in a second - measured in millions of pixels per second. The figure is worked out by multiplying the number of ROPs 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 memory bandwidth is, the lower the potential to get to the max fill rate.

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