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Radeon HD 7870 XT vs Radeon R9 270X

Intro

The Radeon HD 7870 XT makes use of a 28 nm design. AMD has set the core speed at 925 MHz. The GDDR5 memory works at a frequency of 1500 MHz on this card. It features 1536 SPUs as well as 96 Texture Address Units and 32 ROPs.

Compare those specs to the Radeon R9 270X, which features a clock speed of 1000 MHz and a GDDR5 memory speed of 1400 MHz. It also makes use of a 256-bit memory bus, and makes use of a 28 nm design. It is comprised of 1280 SPUs, 80 TAUs, and 32 ROPs.

Display Graphs

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Power Usage and Theoretical Benchmarks

Power Consumption (Max TDP)

Radeon R9 270X 180 Watts
Radeon HD 7870 XT 185 Watts
Difference: 5 Watts (3%)

Memory Bandwidth

The Radeon HD 7870 XT should theoretically perform just a bit faster than the Radeon R9 270X overall. (explain)

Radeon HD 7870 XT 192000 MB/sec
Radeon R9 270X 179200 MB/sec
Difference: 12800 (7%)

Texel Rate

The Radeon HD 7870 XT should be just a bit (more or less 11%) better at AF than the Radeon R9 270X. (explain)

Radeon HD 7870 XT 88800 Mtexels/sec
Radeon R9 270X 80000 Mtexels/sec
Difference: 8800 (11%)

Pixel Rate

If running with a high resolution is important to you, then the Radeon R9 270X is a better choice, but not by far. (explain)

Radeon R9 270X 32000 Mpixels/sec
Radeon HD 7870 XT 29600 Mpixels/sec
Difference: 2400 (8%)

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 7870 XT

Amazon.com

Radeon R9 270X

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

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Model Radeon HD 7870 XT Radeon R9 270X
Manufacturer AMD AMD
Year November 2012 October 2013
Code Name Tahiti LE Curacao XT
Memory 2048 MB 2048 MB
Core Speed 925 MHz 1000 MHz
Memory Speed 6000 MHz 5600 MHz
Power (Max TDP) 185 watts 180 watts
Bandwidth 192000 MB/sec 179200 MB/sec
Texel Rate 88800 Mtexels/sec 80000 Mtexels/sec
Pixel Rate 29600 Mpixels/sec 32000 Mpixels/sec
Unified Shaders 1536 1280
Texture Mapping Units 96 80
Render Output Units 32 32
Bus Type GDDR5 GDDR5
Bus Width 256-bit 256-bit
Fab Process 28 nm 28 nm
Transistors 4313 million 2800 million
Bus PCIe 3.0 x16 PCIe 3.0 x16
DirectX Version DirectX 11.1 DirectX 11.2
OpenGL Version OpenGL 4.3 OpenGL 4.3

Memory Bandwidth: Memory bandwidth is the largest amount of information (counted in MB per second) that can be transferred over the external memory interface in one second. It's calculated by multiplying the bus width by its memory speed. If it uses DDR type RAM, the result should be multiplied by 2 again. If DDR5, multiply by 4 instead. The better the bandwidth is, the faster the card will be in general. It especially helps with AA, HDR and higher screen resolutions.

Texel Rate: Texel rate is the maximum texture map elements (texels) that can be applied in one second. This figure is worked out by multiplying the total number of texture units by the core 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 processed per second.

Pixel Rate: Pixel rate is the most pixels that the graphics chip could possibly write to its local memory per second - measured in millions of pixels per second. The number is worked out by multiplying the amount 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 fill rate also depends on quite a few other factors, most notably the memory bandwidth - the lower the bandwidth is, the lower the ability to reach the max fill rate.

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