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Radeon HD 7970 vs Radeon R9 280

Intro

The Radeon HD 7970 makes use of a 28 nm design. AMD has clocked the core speed at 925 MHz. The GDDR5 RAM runs at a speed of 1375 MHz on this card. It features 2048 SPUs along with 128 TAUs and 32 ROPs.

Compare those specifications to the Radeon R9 280, which comes with a core clock frequency of 933 MHz and a GDDR5 memory frequency of 1250 MHz. It also features a 384-bit memory bus, and makes use of a 28 nm design. It features 1792 SPUs, 112 TAUs, and 32 ROPs.

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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 7970 8225 points
Radeon R9 280 7961 points
Difference: 264 (3%)

Ethereum Mining Hash Rate

Radeon R9 280 22 Mh/s
Radeon HD 7970 21 Mh/s
Difference: 1 (5%)

Power Usage and Theoretical Benchmarks

Both cards have the same power consumption.

Memory Bandwidth

Performance-wise, the Radeon HD 7970 should theoretically be a little bit superior to the Radeon R9 280 overall. (explain)

Radeon HD 7970 264000 MB/sec
Radeon R9 280 240000 MB/sec
Difference: 24000 (10%)

Texel Rate

The Radeon HD 7970 will be a little bit (about 13%) better at AF than the Radeon R9 280. (explain)

Radeon HD 7970 118400 Mtexels/sec
Radeon R9 280 104496 Mtexels/sec
Difference: 13904 (13%)

Pixel Rate

If running with high levels of AA is important to you, then the Radeon R9 280 is the winner, not by a very large margin though. (explain)

Radeon R9 280 29856 Mpixels/sec
Radeon HD 7970 29600 Mpixels/sec
Difference: 256 (1%)

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 7970

Amazon.com

Check prices at:

Radeon R9 280

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 7970 Radeon R9 280
Manufacturer AMD AMD
Year January 2012 March 2014
Code Name Tahiti XT Tahiti Pro
Memory 3072 MB 3072 MB
Core Speed 925 MHz 933 MHz
Memory Speed 5500 MHz 5000 MHz
Power (Max TDP) 250 watts 250 watts
Bandwidth 264000 MB/sec 240000 MB/sec
Texel Rate 118400 Mtexels/sec 104496 Mtexels/sec
Pixel Rate 29600 Mpixels/sec 29856 Mpixels/sec
Unified Shaders 2048 1792
Texture Mapping Units 128 112
Render Output Units 32 32
Bus Type GDDR5 GDDR5
Bus Width 384-bit 384-bit
Fab Process 28 nm 28 nm
Transistors 4313 million 4313 million
Bus PCIe 3.0 x16 PCIe 3.0 x16
DirectX Version DirectX 11.1 DirectX 11.2
OpenGL Version OpenGL 4.2 OpenGL 4.3

Memory Bandwidth: Bandwidth is the largest amount of data (measured in megabytes per second) that can be transported past the external memory interface in one second. It is worked out by multiplying the interface width by its memory speed. If it uses DDR RAM, it must be multiplied by 2 again. If it uses DDR5, multiply by ANOTHER 2x. The better the memory bandwidth, the faster 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 processed in one second. This is calculated by multiplying the total amount of texture units by the core clock speed of the chip. The better this number, the better the graphics card will be at handling texture filtering (anisotropic filtering - AF). It is measured in millions of texels processed in a second.

Pixel Rate: Pixel rate is the maximum number of pixels that the graphics card can possibly record to its local memory per second - measured in millions of pixels per second. Pixel rate is worked out by multiplying the number of colour ROPs by the the card's clock speed. ROPs (Raster Operations Pipelines - sometimes also referred to as Render Output Units) are responsible for outputting the pixels (image) to the screen. The actual pixel fill rate is also dependant on quite a few other factors, most notably the memory bandwidth - the lower the memory bandwidth is, the lower the ability to get to the max fill rate.

Display Prices

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Radeon HD 7970

Amazon.com

Check prices at:

Radeon R9 280

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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