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GeForce GTX 280 vs Radeon HD 6970

Intro

The GeForce GTX 280 comes with clock speeds of 602 MHz on the GPU, and 1107 MHz on the 1024 MB of GDDR3 memory. It features 240 SPUs as well as 80 Texture Address Units and 32 ROPs.

Compare those specifications to the Radeon HD 6970, which features core speeds of 880 MHz on the GPU, and 1375 MHz on the 2048 MB of GDDR5 RAM. It features 1536 SPUs as well as 96 Texture Address Units and 32 ROPs.

Display Graphs

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Power Usage and Theoretical Benchmarks

Power Consumption (Max TDP)

GeForce GTX 280 236 Watts
Radeon HD 6970 250 Watts
Difference: 14 Watts (6%)

Memory Bandwidth

Theoretically, the Radeon HD 6970 should be a lot faster than the GeForce GTX 280 overall. (explain)

Radeon HD 6970 176000 MB/sec
GeForce GTX 280 141696 MB/sec
Difference: 34304 (24%)

Texel Rate

The Radeon HD 6970 is much (approximately 75%) more effective at anisotropic filtering than the GeForce GTX 280. (explain)

Radeon HD 6970 84480 Mtexels/sec
GeForce GTX 280 48160 Mtexels/sec
Difference: 36320 (75%)

Pixel Rate

If running with high levels of AA is important to you, then the Radeon HD 6970 is the winner, by a large margin. (explain)

Radeon HD 6970 28160 Mpixels/sec
GeForce GTX 280 19264 Mpixels/sec
Difference: 8896 (46%)

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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GeForce GTX 280

Amazon.com

Check prices at:

Radeon HD 6970

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 GeForce GTX 280 Radeon HD 6970
Manufacturer nVidia AMD
Year June 17, 2008 December 2010
Code Name G200 Cayman XT
Memory 1024 MB 2048 MB
Core Speed 602 MHz 880 MHz
Memory Speed 2214 MHz 5500 MHz
Power (Max TDP) 236 watts 250 watts
Bandwidth 141696 MB/sec 176000 MB/sec
Texel Rate 48160 Mtexels/sec 84480 Mtexels/sec
Pixel Rate 19264 Mpixels/sec 28160 Mpixels/sec
Unified Shaders 240 1536
Texture Mapping Units 80 96
Render Output Units 32 32
Bus Type GDDR3 GDDR5
Bus Width 512-bit 256-bit
Fab Process 65 nm 40 nm
Transistors 1400 million 2640 million
Bus PCIe x16 2.0 PCIe x16
DirectX Version DirectX 10 DirectX 11
OpenGL Version OpenGL 3.1 OpenGL 4.1

Memory Bandwidth: Memory bandwidth is the maximum amount of data (measured in megabytes per second) that can be transferred over the external memory interface within a second. It's worked out by multiplying the card's bus width by its memory clock speed. If it uses DDR memory, it must be multiplied by 2 once again. If it uses DDR5, multiply by 4 instead. The better the bandwidth is, 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 processed in one second. This figure is calculated by multiplying the total texture units of the card by the core speed of the chip. The better the texel rate, the better the graphics card will be at texture filtering (anisotropic filtering - AF). It is measured in millions of texels applied per second.

Pixel Rate: Pixel rate is the most pixels the graphics card can possibly write to its local memory per second - measured in millions of pixels per second. Pixel rate is worked out by multiplying the number of ROPs by the clock speed of the card. ROPs (Raster Operations Pipelines - sometimes also referred to as Render Output Units) are responsible for drawing the pixels (image) on the screen. The actual pixel rate also depends on many other factors, especially the memory bandwidth - the lower the bandwidth is, the lower the potential to get to the maximum fill rate.

Display Prices

Hide Prices

GeForce GTX 280

Amazon.com

Check prices at:

Radeon HD 6970

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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