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Radeon HD 6950 2GB vs Radeon HD 7870 XT

Intro

The Radeon HD 6950 2GB comes with a GPU clock speed of 800 MHz, and the 2048 MB of GDDR5 RAM runs at 1250 MHz through a 256-bit bus. It also is made up of 1408 SPUs, 88 Texture Address Units, and 32 Raster Operation Units.

Compare all of that to the Radeon HD 7870 XT, which uses 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 Texture Address Units and 32 ROPs.

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Power Usage and Theoretical Benchmarks

Power Consumption (Max TDP)

Radeon HD 7870 XT 185 Watts
Radeon HD 6950 2GB 200 Watts
Difference: 15 Watts (8%)

Memory Bandwidth

Theoretically speaking, the Radeon HD 7870 XT will be 20% quicker than the Radeon HD 6950 2GB overall, because of its greater bandwidth. (explain)

Radeon HD 7870 XT 192000 MB/sec
Radeon HD 6950 2GB 160000 MB/sec
Difference: 32000 (20%)

Texel Rate

The Radeon HD 7870 XT is a lot (more or less 26%) more effective at anisotropic filtering than the Radeon HD 6950 2GB. (explain)

Radeon HD 7870 XT 88800 Mtexels/sec
Radeon HD 6950 2GB 70400 Mtexels/sec
Difference: 18400 (26%)

Pixel Rate

The Radeon HD 7870 XT will be a little bit (approximately 16%) more effective at AA than the Radeon HD 6950 2GB, and also will be able to handle higher screen resolutions without losing too much performance. (explain)

Radeon HD 7870 XT 29600 Mpixels/sec
Radeon HD 6950 2GB 25600 Mpixels/sec
Difference: 4000 (16%)

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 6950 2GB

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 6950 2GB Radeon HD 7870 XT
Manufacturer AMD AMD
Year December 2010 November 2012
Code Name Cayman Pro Tahiti LE
Memory 2048 MB 2048 MB
Core Speed 800 MHz 925 MHz
Memory Speed 5000 MHz 6000 MHz
Power (Max TDP) 200 watts 185 watts
Bandwidth 160000 MB/sec 192000 MB/sec
Texel Rate 70400 Mtexels/sec 88800 Mtexels/sec
Pixel Rate 25600 Mpixels/sec 29600 Mpixels/sec
Unified Shaders 1408 1536
Texture Mapping Units 88 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 max amount of data (measured in MB per second) that can be transferred past the external memory interface in a second. It's calculated by multiplying the interface width by the speed of its memory. If the card has DDR type RAM, it must be multiplied by 2 again. If DDR5, multiply by ANOTHER 2x. The higher the bandwidth is, the better the card will be in general. It especially helps with AA, High Dynamic Range and higher screen resolutions.

Texel Rate: Texel rate is the maximum amount of texture map elements (texels) that can be applied per second. This is calculated 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 handling texture filtering (anisotropic filtering - AF). It is measured in millions of texels in one second.

Pixel Rate: Pixel rate is the most pixels the video card can possibly record to its local memory in a second - measured in millions of pixels per second. Pixel rate is worked out by multiplying the amount of ROPs 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 also depends on quite a few other factors, most notably the memory bandwidth of the card - the lower the memory bandwidth is, the lower the potential to reach the max fill rate.

Display Prices

Hide Prices

Radeon HD 6950 2GB

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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