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Radeon HD 7870 XT vs Radeon R9 270X

Intro

The Radeon HD 7870 XT features a clock speed of 925 MHz and a GDDR5 memory speed of 1500 MHz. It also uses a 256-bit memory bus, and makes use of a 28 nm design. It is comprised of 1536 SPUs, 96 Texture Address Units, and 32 Raster Operation Units.

Compare that to the Radeon R9 270X, which makes use of a 28 nm design. AMD has set the core speed at 1000 MHz. The GDDR5 memory works at a frequency of 1400 MHz on this particular model. It features 1280 SPUs along with 80 TAUs and 32 Rasterization Operator Units.

(No game benchmarks for this combination yet.)

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, in theory, should be a little 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 will be a little bit (approximately 11%) more effective 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 using lots of anti-aliasing is important to you, then the Radeon R9 270X is a better choice, but only just. (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

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

Model Radeon HD 7870 XT Radeon R9 270X
Manufacturer AMD AMD
Year November 2012 October 2013
Code Name Tahiti LE Curacao XT
Fab Process 28 nm 28 nm
Bus PCIe 3.0 x16 PCIe 3.0 x16
Memory 2048 MB 2048 MB
Core Speed 925 MHz 1000 MHz
Shader Speed N/A MHz (N/A) MHz
Memory Speed 1500 MHz (6000 MHz effective) 1400 MHz (5600 MHz effective)
Unified Shaders 1536 1280
Texture Mapping Units 96 80
Render Output Units 32 32
Bus Type GDDR5 GDDR5
Bus Width 256-bit 256-bit
DirectX Version DirectX 11.1 DirectX 11.2
OpenGL Version OpenGL 4.3 OpenGL 4.3
Power (Max TDP) 185 watts 180 watts
Shader Model 5.0 5.0
Bandwidth 192000 MB/sec 179200 MB/sec
Texel Rate 88800 Mtexels/sec 80000 Mtexels/sec
Pixel Rate 29600 Mpixels/sec 32000 Mpixels/sec

Memory Bandwidth: Bandwidth is the max amount of data (in units of megabytes per second) that can be moved over 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 memory, it should 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 higher screen resolutions.

Texel Rate: Texel rate is the maximum number of texture map elements (texels) that can be processed per second. This is calculated by multiplying the total texture units by the core clock speed of the chip. The better the texel rate, the better the card will be at texture filtering (anisotropic filtering - AF). It is measured in millions of texels processed in one second.

Pixel Rate: Pixel rate is the most pixels the graphics card could possibly record to its local memory in a second - measured in millions of pixels per second. The number is worked out by multiplying the amount of Raster Operations Pipelines by the the card's clock speed. ROPs (Raster Operations Pipelines - sometimes also referred to as Render Output Units) are responsible for filling the screen with pixels (the image). The actual pixel output rate is also dependant on many other factors, especially the memory bandwidth of the card - the lower the memory bandwidth is, the lower the ability to reach the max fill rate.

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