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Radeon HD 5870 vs Radeon R9 270X

Intro

The Radeon HD 5870 features a GPU core speed of 850 MHz, and the 1024 MB of GDDR5 RAM is set to run at 1200 MHz through a 256-bit bus. It also is comprised of 1600(320x5) Stream Processors, 80 Texture Address Units, and 32 ROPs.

Compare those specifications to the Radeon R9 270X, which features a clock frequency of 1000 MHz and a GDDR5 memory frequency of 1400 MHz. It also features a 256-bit memory bus, and uses a 28 nm design. It is made up of 1280 SPUs, 80 Texture Address Units, and 32 Raster Operation Units.

Display Graphs

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Power Usage and Theoretical Benchmarks

Power Consumption (Max TDP)

Radeon R9 270X 180 Watts
Radeon HD 5870 188 Watts
Difference: 8 Watts (4%)

Memory Bandwidth

The Radeon R9 270X should theoretically perform a bit faster than the Radeon HD 5870 overall. (explain)

Radeon R9 270X 179200 MB/sec
Radeon HD 5870 153600 MB/sec
Difference: 25600 (17%)

Texel Rate

The Radeon R9 270X should be a small bit (about 18%) more effective at texture filtering than the Radeon HD 5870. (explain)

Radeon R9 270X 80000 Mtexels/sec
Radeon HD 5870 68000 Mtexels/sec
Difference: 12000 (18%)

Pixel Rate

The Radeon R9 270X is just a bit (approximately 18%) better at FSAA than the Radeon HD 5870, and also should be capable of handling higher resolutions better. (explain)

Radeon R9 270X 32000 Mpixels/sec
Radeon HD 5870 27200 Mpixels/sec
Difference: 4800 (18%)

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 5870

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 5870 Radeon R9 270X
Manufacturer AMD AMD
Year September 23, 2009 October 2013
Code Name Cypress XT Curacao XT
Memory 1024 MB 2048 MB
Core Speed 850 MHz 1000 MHz
Memory Speed 4800 MHz 5600 MHz
Power (Max TDP) 188 watts 180 watts
Bandwidth 153600 MB/sec 179200 MB/sec
Texel Rate 68000 Mtexels/sec 80000 Mtexels/sec
Pixel Rate 27200 Mpixels/sec 32000 Mpixels/sec
Unified Shaders 1600(320x5) 1280
Texture Mapping Units 80 80
Render Output Units 32 32
Bus Type GDDR5 GDDR5
Bus Width 256-bit 256-bit
Fab Process 40 nm 28 nm
Transistors 2154 million 2800 million
Bus PCIe 2.1 x16 PCIe 3.0 x16
DirectX Version DirectX 11 DirectX 11.2
OpenGL Version OpenGL 3.2 OpenGL 4.3

Memory Bandwidth: Memory bandwidth is the maximum amount of data (measured in megabytes per second) that can be transferred across the external memory interface in a second. The number is worked out by multiplying the card's interface width by its memory clock speed. If it uses DDR type RAM, it must be multiplied by 2 once again. If DDR5, multiply by ANOTHER 2x. The higher the card's memory bandwidth, the better the card will be in general. It especially helps with anti-aliasing, HDR and higher screen resolutions.

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

Pixel Rate: Pixel rate is the maximum number of pixels that the graphics chip 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 number of Render Output Units by the the core clock speed. ROPs (Raster Operations Pipelines - also called Render Output Units) are responsible for filling the screen with pixels (the image). The actual pixel fill rate is also dependant on lots of other factors, most notably the memory bandwidth - the lower the bandwidth is, the lower the potential to get to the maximum fill rate.

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