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Radeon HD 5830 vs Radeon HD 6850

Intro

The Radeon HD 5830 has a GPU core clock speed of 800 MHz, and the 1024 MB of GDDR5 memory is set to run at 1000 MHz through a 256-bit bus. It also is made up of 1120(224x5) Stream Processors, 56 TAUs, and 16 ROPs.

Compare that to the Radeon HD 6850, which comes with GPU core speed of 775 MHz, and 1024 MB of GDDR5 memory running at 1000 MHz through a 256-bit bus. It also is comprised of 960 SPUs, 48 Texture Address Units, and 32 ROPs.

Display Graphs

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Power Usage and Theoretical Benchmarks

Power Consumption (Max TDP)

Radeon HD 6850 127 Watts
Radeon HD 5830 175 Watts
Difference: 48 Watts (38%)

Memory Bandwidth

Both cards have the exact same memory bandwidth, so theoretically they should have identical performance. (explain)

Texel Rate

The Radeon HD 5830 will be a bit (approximately 20%) more effective at AF than the Radeon HD 6850. (explain)

Radeon HD 5830 44800 Mtexels/sec
Radeon HD 6850 37200 Mtexels/sec
Difference: 7600 (20%)

Pixel Rate

If using lots of anti-aliasing is important to you, then the Radeon HD 6850 is the winner, by a large margin. (explain)

Radeon HD 6850 24800 Mpixels/sec
Radeon HD 5830 12800 Mpixels/sec
Difference: 12000 (94%)

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 5830

Amazon.com

Radeon HD 6850

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 5830 Radeon HD 6850
Manufacturer AMD AMD
Year February 25, 2010 October 2010
Code Name Cypress LE Barts Pro
Memory 1024 MB 1024 MB
Core Speed 800 MHz 775 MHz
Memory Speed 4000 MHz 4000 MHz
Power (Max TDP) 175 watts 127 watts
Bandwidth 128000 MB/sec 128000 MB/sec
Texel Rate 44800 Mtexels/sec 37200 Mtexels/sec
Pixel Rate 12800 Mpixels/sec 24800 Mpixels/sec
Unified Shaders 1120(224x5) 960
Texture Mapping Units 56 48
Render Output Units 16 32
Bus Type GDDR5 GDDR5
Bus Width 256-bit 256-bit
Fab Process 40 nm 40 nm
Transistors 2154 million 1700 million
Bus PCIe 2.1 x16 PCIe x16
DirectX Version DirectX 11 DirectX 11
OpenGL Version OpenGL 3.2 OpenGL 4.1

Memory Bandwidth: Bandwidth is the largest amount of data (measured in megabytes per second) that can be moved past the external memory interface within a second. It is worked out by multiplying the bus width by its memory speed. If the card has DDR memory, it must be multiplied by 2 again. If DDR5, multiply by ANOTHER 2x. The better the bandwidth is, the better the card will be in general. It especially helps with AA, High Dynamic Range and high resolutions.

Texel Rate: Texel rate is the maximum amount of texture map elements (texels) that can be 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 the texel rate, the better the video card will be at texture filtering (anisotropic filtering - AF). It is measured in millions of texels processed in a second.

Pixel Rate: Pixel rate is the maximum amount of pixels that the graphics chip can possibly record to the local memory in one second - measured in millions of pixels per second. The figure is calculated by multiplying the number of Render Output Units by the clock speed of the card. ROPs (Raster Operations Pipelines - aka Render Output Units) are responsible for drawing the pixels (image) on the screen. The actual pixel fill rate is also dependant on many other factors, most notably the memory bandwidth of the card - the lower the bandwidth is, the lower the potential to get to the max fill rate.

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