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GeForce GTX 550 Ti vs Radeon HD 5870

Intro

The GeForce GTX 550 Ti comes with a core clock speed of 900 MHz and a GDDR5 memory speed of 1026 MHz. It also uses a 192-bit bus, and makes use of a 40 nm design. It is comprised of 192 SPUs, 32 Texture Address Units, and 24 Raster Operation Units.

Compare that to the Radeon HD 5870, which comes with clock speeds of 850 MHz on the GPU, and 1200 MHz on the 1024 MB of GDDR5 RAM. It features 1600(320x5) SPUs as well as 80 TAUs and 32 Rasterization Operator Units.

(No game benchmarks for this combination yet.)

Power Usage and Theoretical Benchmarks

Power Consumption (Max TDP)

GeForce GTX 550 Ti 116 Watts
Radeon HD 5870 188 Watts
Difference: 72 Watts (62%)

Memory Bandwidth

The Radeon HD 5870 should theoretically perform quite a bit faster than the GeForce GTX 550 Ti overall. (explain)

Radeon HD 5870 153600 MB/sec
GeForce GTX 550 Ti 98496 MB/sec
Difference: 55104 (56%)

Texel Rate

The Radeon HD 5870 should be much (more or less 136%) more effective at AF than the GeForce GTX 550 Ti. (explain)

Radeon HD 5870 68000 Mtexels/sec
GeForce GTX 550 Ti 28800 Mtexels/sec
Difference: 39200 (136%)

Pixel Rate

The Radeon HD 5870 will be a lot (approximately 26%) faster with regards to full screen anti-aliasing than the GeForce GTX 550 Ti, and also able to handle higher resolutions more effectively. (explain)

Radeon HD 5870 27200 Mpixels/sec
GeForce GTX 550 Ti 21600 Mpixels/sec
Difference: 5600 (26%)

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

GeForce GTX 550 Ti

Amazon.com

Radeon HD 5870

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

Model GeForce GTX 550 Ti Radeon HD 5870
Manufacturer nVidia AMD
Year March 2011 September 23, 2009
Code Name GF116 Cypress XT
Fab Process 40 nm 40 nm
Bus PCIe 2.1 x16 PCIe 2.1 x16
Memory 1024 MB 1024 MB
Core Speed 900 MHz 850 MHz
Shader Speed 1800 MHz (N/A) MHz
Memory Speed 1026 MHz (4104 MHz effective) 1200 MHz (4800 MHz effective)
Unified Shaders 192 1600(320x5)
Texture Mapping Units 32 80
Render Output Units 24 32
Bus Type GDDR5 GDDR5
Bus Width 192-bit 256-bit
DirectX Version DirectX 11 DirectX 11
OpenGL Version OpenGL 4.1 OpenGL 3.2
Power (Max TDP) 116 watts 188 watts
Shader Model 5.0 5.0
Bandwidth 98496 MB/sec 153600 MB/sec
Texel Rate 28800 Mtexels/sec 68000 Mtexels/sec
Pixel Rate 21600 Mpixels/sec 27200 Mpixels/sec

Memory Bandwidth: Bandwidth is the maximum amount of information (counted in megabytes per second) that can be transported over the external memory interface in a second. It is worked out by multiplying the interface width by the speed of its memory. If it uses DDR memory, the result should be multiplied by 2 again. If it uses DDR5, multiply by ANOTHER 2x. The better the bandwidth is, the faster 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 are applied in one second. This figure is worked out by multiplying the total number of texture units by the core clock speed of the chip. The higher this number, the better the video card will be at handling texture filtering (anisotropic filtering - AF). It is measured in millions of texels applied in one second.

Pixel Rate: Pixel rate is the most pixels that the graphics chip could possibly record to its local memory in a second - measured in millions of pixels per second. The figure is calculated by multiplying the number of colour 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 output rate is also dependant on lots of other factors, most notably the memory bandwidth - the lower the bandwidth is, the lower the ability to get to the maximum fill rate.

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