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Radeon HD 5850 vs Radeon HD 6950 2GB

Intro

The Radeon HD 5850 has a GPU clock speed of 725 MHz, and the 1024 MB of GDDR5 memory runs at 1000 MHz through a 256-bit bus. It also is comprised of 1440(288x5) Stream Processors, 72 Texture Address Units, and 32 ROPs.

Compare those specifications to the Radeon HD 6950 2GB, which comes with a core clock frequency of 800 MHz and a GDDR5 memory speed of 1250 MHz. It also features a 256-bit bus, and makes use of a 40 nm design. It is comprised of 1408 SPUs, 88 TAUs, and 32 Raster Operation Units.

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Power Usage and Theoretical Benchmarks

Power Consumption (Max TDP)

Radeon HD 5850 151 Watts
Radeon HD 6950 2GB 200 Watts
Difference: 49 Watts (32%)

Memory Bandwidth

In theory, the Radeon HD 6950 2GB should be 25% faster than the Radeon HD 5850 overall, because of its greater data rate. (explain)

Radeon HD 6950 2GB 160000 MB/sec
Radeon HD 5850 128000 MB/sec
Difference: 32000 (25%)

Texel Rate

The Radeon HD 6950 2GB is much (about 35%) more effective at AF than the Radeon HD 5850. (explain)

Radeon HD 6950 2GB 70400 Mtexels/sec
Radeon HD 5850 52200 Mtexels/sec
Difference: 18200 (35%)

Pixel Rate

If using a high screen resolution is important to you, then the Radeon HD 6950 2GB is a better choice, but only just. (explain)

Radeon HD 6950 2GB 25600 Mpixels/sec
Radeon HD 5850 23200 Mpixels/sec
Difference: 2400 (10%)

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 5850

Amazon.com

Check prices at:

Radeon HD 6950 2GB

Amazon.com

Check prices at:

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 5850 Radeon HD 6950 2GB
Manufacturer AMD AMD
Year September 30, 2009 December 2010
Code Name Cypress PRO Cayman Pro
Memory 1024 MB 2048 MB
Core Speed 725 MHz 800 MHz
Memory Speed 4000 MHz 5000 MHz
Power (Max TDP) 151 watts 200 watts
Bandwidth 128000 MB/sec 160000 MB/sec
Texel Rate 52200 Mtexels/sec 70400 Mtexels/sec
Pixel Rate 23200 Mpixels/sec 25600 Mpixels/sec
Unified Shaders 1440(288x5) 1408
Texture Mapping Units 72 88
Render Output Units 32 32
Bus Type GDDR5 GDDR5
Bus Width 256-bit 256-bit
Fab Process 40 nm 40 nm
Transistors 2154 million 2640 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 information (counted in megabytes per second) that can be moved across the external memory interface within a second. It's calculated by multiplying the card's interface width by its memory speed. If it uses DDR type RAM, it must be multiplied by 2 once again. If DDR5, multiply by 4 instead. The higher the card's memory bandwidth, the better the card will be in general. It especially helps with anti-aliasing, High Dynamic Range and high resolutions.

Texel Rate: Texel rate is the maximum number of texture map elements (texels) that are processed in one 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 handling texture filtering (anisotropic filtering - AF). It is measured in millions of texels per second.

Pixel Rate: Pixel rate is the maximum number of pixels that the graphics card can possibly record to its local memory per second - measured in millions of pixels per second. The number is calculated 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 many other factors, most notably the memory bandwidth of the card - the lower the memory bandwidth is, the lower the potential to reach the maximum fill rate.

Display Prices

Hide Prices

Radeon HD 5850

Amazon.com

Check prices at:

Radeon HD 6950 2GB

Amazon.com

Check prices at:

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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