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GeForce GTX 980 vs Radeon RX 590

Intro

The GeForce GTX 980 uses a 28 nm design. nVidia has set the core speed at 1126 MHz. The GDDR5 RAM runs at a frequency of 1750 MHz on this card. It features 2048 SPUs along with 128 Texture Address Units and 64 Rasterization Operator Units.

Compare those specs to the Radeon RX 590, which features core speeds of 1469 MHz on the GPU, and 2000 MHz on the 8192 MB of GDDR5 RAM. It features 2304 SPUs as well as 144 Texture Address Units and 32 Rasterization Operator Units.

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Power Usage and Theoretical Benchmarks

Power Consumption (Max TDP)

GeForce GTX 980 165 Watts
Radeon RX 590 175 Watts
Difference: 10 Watts (6%)

Memory Bandwidth

Theoretically speaking, the Radeon RX 590 should be 17% quicker than the GeForce GTX 980 overall, because of its greater data rate. (explain)

Radeon RX 590 262144 MB/sec
GeForce GTX 980 224000 MB/sec
Difference: 38144 (17%)

Texel Rate

The Radeon RX 590 should be a lot (about 47%) better at anisotropic filtering than the GeForce GTX 980. (explain)

Radeon RX 590 211536 Mtexels/sec
GeForce GTX 980 144128 Mtexels/sec
Difference: 67408 (47%)

Pixel Rate

If using a high screen resolution is important to you, then the GeForce GTX 980 is superior to the Radeon RX 590, by far. (explain)

GeForce GTX 980 72064 Mpixels/sec
Radeon RX 590 47008 Mpixels/sec
Difference: 25056 (53%)

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

Display Prices

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GeForce GTX 980

Amazon.com

Radeon RX 590

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 GeForce GTX 980 Radeon RX 590
Manufacturer nVidia AMD
Year September 2014 November 2018
Code Name GM204-400 Polaris 30
Memory 4096 MB 8192 MB
Core Speed 1126 MHz 1469 MHz
Memory Speed 7000 MHz 8000 MHz
Power (Max TDP) 165 watts 175 watts
Bandwidth 224000 MB/sec 262144 MB/sec
Texel Rate 144128 Mtexels/sec 211536 Mtexels/sec
Pixel Rate 72064 Mpixels/sec 47008 Mpixels/sec
Unified Shaders 2048 2304
Texture Mapping Units 128 144
Render Output Units 64 32
Bus Type GDDR5 GDDR5
Bus Width 256-bit 256-bit
Fab Process 28 nm 12 nm
Transistors 5200 million 5700 million
Bus PCIe 3.0 x16 PCIe 3.0 x16
DirectX Version DirectX 11.2 DirectX 12.0
OpenGL Version OpenGL 4.5 OpenGL 4.5

Memory Bandwidth: Memory bandwidth is the maximum amount of data (counted in megabytes per second) that can be transported past the external memory interface in a second. It is calculated by multiplying the interface width by the speed of its memory. If the card has DDR type RAM, it should be multiplied by 2 again. If DDR5, multiply by 4 instead. The higher the memory bandwidth, the better the card will be in general. It especially helps with anti-aliasing, HDR and high resolutions.

Texel Rate: Texel rate is the maximum number of texture map elements (texels) that can be applied in one second. This number is calculated by multiplying the total amount of texture units of the card 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 in a second.

Pixel Rate: Pixel rate is the most pixels the video card can possibly write to the local memory in a second - measured in millions of pixels per second. Pixel rate is worked out by multiplying the amount of ROPs by the the core speed of the card. ROPs (Raster Operations Pipelines - also sometimes called Render Output Units) are responsible for drawing the pixels (image) on the screen. The actual pixel rate also depends on lots of 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

Hide Prices

GeForce GTX 980

Amazon.com

Radeon RX 590

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.

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