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Radeon HD 5830 vs Radeon HD 6850

Intro

The Radeon HD 5830 features a clock speed of 800 MHz and a GDDR5 memory speed of 1000 MHz. It also features a 256-bit bus, and makes use of a 40 nm design. It features 1120(224x5) SPUs, 56 TAUs, and 16 ROPs.

Compare those specs to the Radeon HD 6850, which features a clock speed of 775 MHz and a GDDR5 memory speed of 1000 MHz. It also features a 256-bit memory bus, and makes use of a 40 nm design. It is made up of 960 SPUs, 48 TAUs, and 32 Raster Operation Units.

(No game benchmarks for this combination yet.)

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 exactly the same memory bandwidth, so in theory they should perform exactly the same. (explain)

Texel Rate

The Radeon HD 5830 is a bit (about 20%) better at texture filtering than the Radeon HD 6850. (explain)

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

Pixel Rate

If running with high levels of AA 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

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

Model Radeon HD 5830 Radeon HD 6850
Manufacturer AMD AMD
Year February 25, 2010 October 2010
Code Name Cypress LE Barts Pro
Fab Process 40 nm 40 nm
Bus PCIe 2.1 x16 PCIe x16
Memory 1024 MB 1024 MB
Core Speed 800 MHz 775 MHz
Shader Speed N/A MHz (N/A) MHz
Memory Speed 1000 MHz (4000 MHz effective) 1000 MHz (4000 MHz effective)
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
DirectX Version DirectX 11 DirectX 11
OpenGL Version OpenGL 3.2 OpenGL 4.1
Power (Max TDP) 175 watts 127 watts
Shader Model 5.0 5.0
Bandwidth 128000 MB/sec 128000 MB/sec
Texel Rate 44800 Mtexels/sec 37200 Mtexels/sec
Pixel Rate 12800 Mpixels/sec 24800 Mpixels/sec

Memory Bandwidth: Memory bandwidth is the largest amount of information (counted in MB per second) that can be transferred past the external memory interface in a second. It is worked out by multiplying the bus width by its memory clock speed. If it uses DDR type RAM, it must 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 AA, HDR and high resolutions.

Texel Rate: Texel rate is the maximum amount of texture map elements (texels) that can be applied per second. This number is worked out by multiplying the total amount of texture units by the core speed of the chip. The better this number, 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 most pixels the graphics card could possibly record to its local memory in one second - measured in millions of pixels per second. The number is worked out by multiplying the amount of ROPs by the the core speed of the card. ROPs (Raster Operations Pipelines - sometimes also referred to as Render Output Units) are responsible for filling the screen with pixels (the image). The actual pixel output rate also depends on lots of other factors, most notably the memory bandwidth - the lower the memory bandwidth is, the lower the potential to reach the max fill rate.

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