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Radeon HD 6870 vs Radeon HD 7790

Intro

The Radeon HD 6870 comes with a GPU core speed of 900 MHz, and the 1024 MB of GDDR5 memory is set to run at 1050 MHz through a 256-bit bus. It also is made up of 1120 SPUs, 56 TAUs, and 32 ROPs.

Compare those specifications to the Radeon HD 7790, which uses a 28 nm design. AMD has clocked the core speed at 1000 MHz. The GDDR5 memory works at a frequency of 1500 MHz on this specific card. It features 896 SPUs along with 56 Texture Address Units and 16 Rasterization Operator Units.

(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

Performance-wise, the Radeon HD 6870 should theoretically be a lot superior to 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 a bit (approximately 11%) more effective at 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 using high levels of AA 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

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 maximum amount of information (measured in MB per second) that can be transferred over the external memory interface within a second. It's calculated by multiplying the card's interface width by its memory clock speed. If the card has DDR type RAM, it should be multiplied by 2 again. If DDR5, multiply by ANOTHER 2x. The higher the card's memory bandwidth, the faster the card will be in general. It especially helps with anti-aliasing, High Dynamic Range and high resolutions.

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

Pixel Rate: Pixel rate is the most pixels the video card could possibly record to the local memory per second - measured in millions of pixels per second. The figure is calculated by multiplying the number of Render Output Units by the the card's clock speed. ROPs (Raster Operations Pipelines - also called Render Output Units) are responsible for outputting the pixels (image) to the screen. The actual pixel rate is also dependant on many other factors, especially the memory bandwidth - the lower the bandwidth is, the lower the potential to get to the max fill rate.

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