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Radeon R9 280 vs Radeon RX 590

Intro

The Radeon R9 280 uses a 28 nm design. AMD has set the core frequency at 933 MHz. The GDDR5 memory works at a speed of 1250 MHz on this model. It features 1792 SPUs as well as 112 TAUs and 32 Rasterization Operator Units.

Compare all of that to the Radeon RX 590, which uses a 12 nm design. AMD has clocked the core frequency at 1469 MHz. The GDDR5 RAM runs at a speed of 2000 MHz on this specific model. It features 2304 SPUs along with 144 TAUs and 32 Rasterization Operator Units.

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Power Usage and Theoretical Benchmarks

Power Consumption (Max TDP)

Radeon RX 590 175 Watts
Radeon R9 280 250 Watts
Difference: 75 Watts (43%)

Memory Bandwidth

The Radeon RX 590, in theory, should be a small bit faster than the Radeon R9 280 overall. (explain)

Radeon RX 590 262144 MB/sec
Radeon R9 280 240000 MB/sec
Difference: 22144 (9%)

Texel Rate

The Radeon RX 590 will be quite a bit (about 102%) faster with regards to AF than the Radeon R9 280. (explain)

Radeon RX 590 211536 Mtexels/sec
Radeon R9 280 104496 Mtexels/sec
Difference: 107040 (102%)

Pixel Rate

The Radeon RX 590 will be much (approximately 57%) faster with regards to full screen anti-aliasing than the Radeon R9 280, and should be capable of handling higher resolutions more effectively. (explain)

Radeon RX 590 47008 Mpixels/sec
Radeon R9 280 29856 Mpixels/sec
Difference: 17152 (57%)

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 R9 280

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 Radeon R9 280 Radeon RX 590
Manufacturer AMD AMD
Year March 2014 November 2018
Code Name Tahiti Pro Polaris 30
Memory 3072 MB 8192 MB
Core Speed 933 MHz 1469 MHz
Memory Speed 5000 MHz 8000 MHz
Power (Max TDP) 250 watts 175 watts
Bandwidth 240000 MB/sec 262144 MB/sec
Texel Rate 104496 Mtexels/sec 211536 Mtexels/sec
Pixel Rate 29856 Mpixels/sec 47008 Mpixels/sec
Unified Shaders 1792 2304
Texture Mapping Units 112 144
Render Output Units 32 32
Bus Type GDDR5 GDDR5
Bus Width 384-bit 256-bit
Fab Process 28 nm 12 nm
Transistors 4313 million 5700 million
Bus PCIe 3.0 x16 PCIe 3.0 x16
DirectX Version DirectX 11.2 DirectX 12.0
OpenGL Version OpenGL 4.3 OpenGL 4.5

Memory Bandwidth: Memory bandwidth is the maximum amount of data (in units of megabytes per second) that can be transferred past the external memory interface in one second. The number is worked out by multiplying the card's interface width by the speed of its memory. If the card has DDR type RAM, the result should be multiplied by 2 once again. If DDR5, multiply by ANOTHER 2x. The higher the memory bandwidth, the better the card will be in general. It especially helps with anti-aliasing, High Dynamic Range and higher screen resolutions.

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

Pixel Rate: Pixel rate is the maximum number of pixels the video card can possibly record to its local memory in a second - measured in millions of pixels per second. The number is calculated by multiplying the amount of ROPs by the the card's clock speed. ROPs (Raster Operations Pipelines - also called Render Output Units) are responsible for filling the screen with pixels (the image). The actual pixel output rate also depends on quite a few other factors, most notably the memory bandwidth of the card - the lower the bandwidth is, the lower the potential to reach the maximum fill rate.

Display Prices

Hide Prices

Radeon R9 280

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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