Compare any two graphics cards:
GeForce GTX 580 3GB vs Radeon HD 5970
IntroThe GeForce GTX 580 3GB makes use of a 40 nm design. nVidia has set the core speed at 772 MHz. The GDDR5 memory works at a speed of 1002 MHz on this particular card. It features 512 SPUs as well as 64 TAUs and 48 ROPs.
Compare all of that to the Radeon HD 5970, which has core speeds of 725 MHz on the GPU, and 1000 MHz on the 1024 MB of GDDR5 memory. It features 1600 SPUs along with 160 Texture Address Units and 64 Rasterization Operator Units.
(No game benchmarks for this combination yet.)
Power Usage and Theoretical Benchmarks
Power Consumption (Max TDP)
In theory, the Radeon HD 5970 will be 33% faster than the GeForce GTX 580 3GB in general, due to its greater data rate. (explain)
Texel RateThe Radeon HD 5970 is much (approximately 370%) faster with regards to anisotropic filtering than the GeForce GTX 580 3GB. (explain)
Pixel RateThe Radeon HD 5970 should be a lot (approximately 150%) better at full screen anti-aliasing than the GeForce GTX 580 3GB, and will be able to handle higher screen resolutions without slowing down too much. (explain)
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.
One or more cards in this comparison are multi-core. This means that their bandwidth, texel and pixel rates are theoretically doubled - this does not mean the card will actually perform twice as fast, but only that it should in theory be able to. Actual game benchmarks will give a more accurate idea of what it's capable of.
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.
Memory Bandwidth: Bandwidth is the largest amount of data (measured in megabytes per second) that can be transported over the external memory interface within a second. It is calculated by multiplying the card's bus width by the speed of its memory. In the case of DDR RAM, it must be multiplied by 2 again. If it uses DDR5, multiply by ANOTHER 2x. The better the memory bandwidth, the better the card will be in general. It especially helps with anti-aliasing, HDR and higher screen resolutions.
Texel Rate: Texel rate is the maximum amount of texture map elements (texels) that are applied per second. This figure is worked out by multiplying the total texture units by the core clock speed of the chip. The higher the texel rate, the better the card will be at texture filtering (anisotropic filtering - AF). It is measured in millions of texels in a second.
Pixel Rate: Pixel rate is the most pixels the graphics card could possibly record to its local memory in a second - measured in millions of pixels per second. The number is calculated by multiplying the amount of Raster Operations Pipelines by the the core speed of the card. ROPs (Raster Operations Pipelines - also called Render Output Units) are responsible for outputting the pixels (image) to the screen. The actual pixel output rate also depends on many other factors, especially the memory bandwidth - the lower the bandwidth is, the lower the potential to reach the max fill rate.