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Radeon HD 6970 vs Radeon HD 7870 XT

Intro

The Radeon HD 6970 makes use of a 40 nm design. AMD has set the core speed at 880 MHz. The GDDR5 memory runs at a frequency of 1375 MHz on this particular model. It features 1536 SPUs as well as 96 Texture Address Units and 32 ROPs.

Compare those specifications to the Radeon HD 7870 XT, which makes use of a 28 nm design. AMD has set the core speed at 925 MHz. The GDDR5 RAM is set to run at a frequency of 1500 MHz on this model. It features 1536 SPUs along with 96 TAUs and 32 Rasterization Operator Units.

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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

Radeon HD 7870 XT 6390 points
Radeon HD 6970 3470 points
Difference: 2920 (84%)

Power Usage and Theoretical Benchmarks

Power Consumption (Max TDP)

Radeon HD 7870 XT 185 Watts
Radeon HD 6970 250 Watts
Difference: 65 Watts (35%)

Memory Bandwidth

Theoretically speaking, the Radeon HD 7870 XT will be 9% quicker than the Radeon HD 6970 overall, due to its higher data rate. (explain)

Radeon HD 7870 XT 192000 MB/sec
Radeon HD 6970 176000 MB/sec
Difference: 16000 (9%)

Texel Rate

The Radeon HD 7870 XT is a little bit (approximately 5%) faster with regards to anisotropic filtering than the Radeon HD 6970. (explain)

Radeon HD 7870 XT 88800 Mtexels/sec
Radeon HD 6970 84480 Mtexels/sec
Difference: 4320 (5%)

Pixel Rate

The Radeon HD 7870 XT should be a little bit (more or less 5%) better at AA than the Radeon HD 6970, and able to handle higher screen resolutions more effectively. (explain)

Radeon HD 7870 XT 29600 Mpixels/sec
Radeon HD 6970 28160 Mpixels/sec
Difference: 1440 (5%)

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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Radeon HD 6970

Amazon.com

Check prices at:

Radeon HD 7870 XT

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 Radeon HD 6970 Radeon HD 7870 XT
Manufacturer AMD AMD
Year December 2010 November 2012
Code Name Cayman XT Tahiti LE
Memory 2048 MB 2048 MB
Core Speed 880 MHz 925 MHz
Memory Speed 5500 MHz 6000 MHz
Power (Max TDP) 250 watts 185 watts
Bandwidth 176000 MB/sec 192000 MB/sec
Texel Rate 84480 Mtexels/sec 88800 Mtexels/sec
Pixel Rate 28160 Mpixels/sec 29600 Mpixels/sec
Unified Shaders 1536 1536
Texture Mapping Units 96 96
Render Output Units 32 32
Bus Type GDDR5 GDDR5
Bus Width 256-bit 256-bit
Fab Process 40 nm 28 nm
Transistors 2640 million 4313 million
Bus PCIe x16 PCIe 3.0 x16
DirectX Version DirectX 11 DirectX 11.1
OpenGL Version OpenGL 4.1 OpenGL 4.3

Memory Bandwidth: Memory bandwidth is the largest amount of information (measured in megabytes per second) that can be transported past the external memory interface in one second. It's worked out by multiplying the bus width by its memory clock speed. If the card has DDR type memory, it must be multiplied by 2 again. If it uses DDR5, multiply by ANOTHER 2x. The higher the bandwidth is, the faster the card will be in general. It especially helps with AA, HDR and high resolutions.

Texel Rate: Texel rate is the maximum number of texture map elements (texels) that can be processed per second. This number is calculated by multiplying the total number of texture units of the card by the core speed of the chip. The higher 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 that the graphics card can possibly record to its local memory in a second - measured in millions of pixels per second. Pixel rate is calculated by multiplying the number of Render Output Units by the clock speed of the card. ROPs (Raster Operations Pipelines - also called Render Output Units) are responsible for filling the screen with pixels (the image). The actual pixel rate is also dependant on many other factors, especially the memory bandwidth of the card - the lower the bandwidth is, the lower the potential to reach the max fill rate.

Display Prices

Hide Prices

Radeon HD 6970

Amazon.com

Check prices at:

Radeon HD 7870 XT

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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