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Radeon HD 7870 XT vs Radeon R9 M290X

Intro

The Radeon HD 7870 XT uses a 28 nm design. AMD has set the core frequency at 925 MHz. The GDDR5 RAM runs at a frequency of 1500 MHz on this specific model. It features 1536 SPUs along with 96 Texture Address Units and 32 ROPs.

Compare that to the Radeon R9 M290X, which has a clock speed of 850 MHz and a GDDR5 memory frequency of 1200 MHz. It also makes use of a 256-bit bus, and uses a 28 nm design. It is made up of 1280 SPUs, 80 TAUs, and 32 ROPs.

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Power Usage and Theoretical Benchmarks

Power Consumption (Max TDP)

Radeon R9 M290X 100 Watts
Radeon HD 7870 XT 185 Watts
Difference: 85 Watts (85%)

Memory Bandwidth

Performance-wise, the Radeon HD 7870 XT should in theory be much better than the Radeon R9 M290X in general. (explain)

Radeon HD 7870 XT 192000 MB/sec
Radeon R9 M290X 153600 MB/sec
Difference: 38400 (25%)

Texel Rate

The Radeon HD 7870 XT should be a lot (more or less 31%) better at AF than the Radeon R9 M290X. (explain)

Radeon HD 7870 XT 88800 Mtexels/sec
Radeon R9 M290X 68000 Mtexels/sec
Difference: 20800 (31%)

Pixel Rate

If running with high levels of AA is important to you, then the Radeon HD 7870 XT is the winner, but not by far. (explain)

Radeon HD 7870 XT 29600 Mpixels/sec
Radeon R9 M290X 27200 Mpixels/sec
Difference: 2400 (9%)

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

Check prices at:

Radeon R9 M290X

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 7870 XT Radeon R9 M290X
Manufacturer AMD AMD
Year November 2012 May 1 2014
Code Name Tahiti LE Neptune XT
Memory 2048 MB 4096 MB
Core Speed 925 MHz 850 MHz
Memory Speed 6000 MHz 4800 MHz
Power (Max TDP) 185 watts 100 watts
Bandwidth 192000 MB/sec 153600 MB/sec
Texel Rate 88800 Mtexels/sec 68000 Mtexels/sec
Pixel Rate 29600 Mpixels/sec 27200 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 (Unknown) 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: Bandwidth is the max amount of data (measured in MB per second) that can be transported past the external memory interface within a second. The number is worked out by multiplying the bus width by its memory clock speed. If it uses DDR memory, it should be multiplied by 2 once again. If it uses DDR5, multiply by 4 instead. The better the card's memory bandwidth, the better the card will be in general. It especially helps with anti-aliasing, High Dynamic Range and high resolutions.

Texel Rate: Texel rate is the maximum number of texture map elements (texels) that are processed 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 higher this number, the better the 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 maximum number of pixels the video card can possibly write to its local memory in one second - measured in millions of pixels per second. The number is calculated by multiplying the number of Raster Operations Pipelines by the the core speed of the card. 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 rate also depends 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 maximum fill rate.

Display Prices

Hide Prices

Radeon HD 7870 XT

Amazon.com

Check prices at:

Radeon R9 M290X

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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