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GeForce GTX 580 3GB vs Radeon HD 6950 2GB

Intro

The GeForce GTX 580 3GB features clock speeds of 772 MHz on the GPU, and 1002 MHz on the 3072 MB of GDDR5 RAM. It features 512 SPUs as well as 64 Texture Address Units and 48 Rasterization Operator Units.

Compare those specifications to the Radeon HD 6950 2GB, which features core speeds of 800 MHz on the GPU, and 1250 MHz on the 2048 MB of GDDR5 RAM. It features 1408 SPUs along with 88 Texture Address Units and 32 ROPs.

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Power Usage and Theoretical Benchmarks

Power Consumption (Max TDP)

Radeon HD 6950 2GB 200 Watts
GeForce GTX 580 3GB 244 Watts
Difference: 44 Watts (22%)

Memory Bandwidth

Theoretically speaking, the GeForce GTX 580 3GB should be a bit faster than the Radeon HD 6950 2GB overall. (explain)

GeForce GTX 580 3GB 192384 MB/sec
Radeon HD 6950 2GB 160000 MB/sec
Difference: 32384 (20%)

Texel Rate

The Radeon HD 6950 2GB should be a lot (approximately 42%) more effective at anisotropic filtering than the GeForce GTX 580 3GB. (explain)

Radeon HD 6950 2GB 70400 Mtexels/sec
GeForce GTX 580 3GB 49408 Mtexels/sec
Difference: 20992 (42%)

Pixel Rate

If using a high screen resolution is important to you, then the GeForce GTX 580 3GB is the winner, and very much so. (explain)

GeForce GTX 580 3GB 37056 Mpixels/sec
Radeon HD 6950 2GB 25600 Mpixels/sec
Difference: 11456 (45%)

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 580 3GB

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 GeForce GTX 580 3GB Radeon HD 6950 2GB
Manufacturer nVidia AMD
Year November 2010 December 2010
Code Name GF110 Cayman Pro
Memory 3072 MB 2048 MB
Core Speed 772 MHz 800 MHz
Memory Speed 4008 MHz 5000 MHz
Power (Max TDP) 244 watts 200 watts
Bandwidth 192384 MB/sec 160000 MB/sec
Texel Rate 49408 Mtexels/sec 70400 Mtexels/sec
Pixel Rate 37056 Mpixels/sec 25600 Mpixels/sec
Unified Shaders 512 1408
Texture Mapping Units 64 88
Render Output Units 48 32
Bus Type GDDR5 GDDR5
Bus Width 384-bit 256-bit
Fab Process 40 nm 40 nm
Transistors 3000 million 2640 million
Bus PCIe x16 PCIe x16
DirectX Version DirectX 11 DirectX 11
OpenGL Version OpenGL 4.1 OpenGL 4.1

Memory Bandwidth: Bandwidth is the largest amount of information (counted in MB per second) that can be moved across the external memory interface in a second. The number is worked out by multiplying the card's bus width by the speed of its memory. If the card has DDR RAM, it must be multiplied by 2 again. If DDR5, multiply by 4 instead. The better the memory bandwidth, the faster 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 applied in one second. This number is calculated by multiplying the total texture units by the core clock speed of the chip. The higher the texel rate, the better the graphics card will be at handling texture filtering (anisotropic filtering - AF). It is measured in millions of texels applied in a second.

Pixel Rate: Pixel rate is the maximum number of pixels that the graphics chip could possibly write to the local memory in one second - measured in millions of pixels per second. Pixel rate is worked out by multiplying the number 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 outputting the pixels (image) to the screen. The actual pixel output rate also depends on quite a few other factors, most notably the memory bandwidth of the card - the lower the bandwidth is, the lower the ability to reach the maximum fill rate.

Display Prices

Hide Prices

GeForce GTX 580 3GB

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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