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Radeon HD 6850 vs Radeon HD 6950

Intro

The Radeon HD 6850 has a clock speed of 775 MHz and a GDDR5 memory frequency of 1000 MHz. It also features a 256-bit memory bus, and makes use of a 40 nm design. It features 960 SPUs, 48 Texture Address Units, and 32 ROPs.

Compare all of that to the Radeon HD 6950, which has a clock frequency of 800 MHz and a GDDR5 memory frequency of 1250 MHz. It also features a 256-bit memory bus, and uses a 40 nm design. It is made up of 1408 SPUs, 88 TAUs, and 32 Raster Operation Units.

Display Graphs

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(No game benchmarks for this combination yet.)

Power Usage and Theoretical Benchmarks

Power Consumption (Max TDP)

Radeon HD 6850 127 Watts
Radeon HD 6950 200 Watts
Difference: 73 Watts (57%)

Memory Bandwidth

Performance-wise, the Radeon HD 6950 should theoretically be quite a bit better than the Radeon HD 6850 overall. (explain)

Radeon HD 6950 160000 MB/sec
Radeon HD 6850 128000 MB/sec
Difference: 32000 (25%)

Texel Rate

The Radeon HD 6950 should be much (about 89%) better at texture filtering than the Radeon HD 6850. (explain)

Radeon HD 6950 70400 Mtexels/sec
Radeon HD 6850 37200 Mtexels/sec
Difference: 33200 (89%)

Pixel Rate

If using high levels of AA is important to you, then the Radeon HD 6950 is the winner, though only just barely. (explain)

Radeon HD 6950 25600 Mpixels/sec
Radeon HD 6850 24800 Mpixels/sec
Difference: 800 (3%)

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 6850

Amazon.com

Radeon HD 6950

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 6850 Radeon HD 6950
Manufacturer AMD AMD
Year October 2010 December 2010
Code Name Barts Pro Cayman Pro
Fab Process 40 nm 40 nm
Bus PCIe x16 PCIe x16
Memory 1024 MB 1024 MB
Core Speed 775 MHz 800 MHz
Shader Speed N/A MHz (N/A) MHz
Memory Speed 4000 MHz 5000 MHz
Unified Shaders 960 1408
Texture Mapping Units 48 88
Render Output Units 32 32
Bus Type GDDR5 GDDR5
Bus Width 256-bit 256-bit
DirectX Version DirectX 11 DirectX 11
OpenGL Version OpenGL 4.1 OpenGL 4.1
Power (Max TDP) 127 watts 200 watts
Shader Model 5.0 5.0
Bandwidth 128000 MB/sec 160000 MB/sec
Texel Rate 37200 Mtexels/sec 70400 Mtexels/sec
Pixel Rate 24800 Mpixels/sec 25600 Mpixels/sec

Memory Bandwidth: Memory bandwidth is the max amount of information (counted in MB per second) that can be transferred past the external memory interface within a second. The number is worked out by multiplying the interface width by the speed of its memory. If the card has DDR type memory, it should be multiplied by 2 again. If it uses DDR5, multiply by 4 instead. The higher the memory bandwidth, the faster 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 are processed per second. This number is worked out 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 graphics card will be at texture filtering (anisotropic filtering - AF). It is measured in millions of texels processed in one second.

Pixel Rate: Pixel rate is the maximum amount of pixels the video card could possibly write 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 clock speed of the card. ROPs (Raster Operations Pipelines - aka Render Output Units) are responsible for outputting the pixels (image) to the screen. The actual pixel fill rate is also dependant on many other factors, especially the memory bandwidth of the card - the lower the bandwidth is, the lower the potential to get to the maximum fill rate.

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