Compare any two graphics cards:
GeForce GTX 550 Ti vs Radeon HD 5870
IntroThe GeForce GTX 550 Ti uses a 40 nm design. nVidia has set the core frequency at 900 MHz. The GDDR5 memory runs at a frequency of 1026 MHz on this particular card. It features 192 SPUs as well as 32 TAUs and 24 Rasterization Operator Units.
Compare those specifications to the Radeon HD 5870, which has 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 Texture Address Units and 32 Rasterization Operator Units.
Power Usage and Theoretical Benchmarks
Power Consumption (Max TDP)
The Radeon HD 5870, in theory, should be quite a bit faster than the GeForce GTX 550 Ti overall. (explain)
Texel RateThe Radeon HD 5870 will be much (about 136%) more effective at anisotropic filtering than the GeForce GTX 550 Ti. (explain)
Pixel RateIf using a high screen resolution is important to you, then the Radeon HD 5870 is a better choice, by a large margin. (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.
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 max amount of data (counted in MB per second) that can be transported over the external memory interface within a second. It is worked out by multiplying the interface width by its memory clock speed. In the case of DDR RAM, it must be multiplied by 2 again. If DDR5, multiply by 4 instead. The higher the card's memory bandwidth, the faster the card will be in general. It especially helps with anti-aliasing, HDR and higher screen resolutions.
Texel Rate: Texel rate is the maximum number of texture map elements (texels) that are processed per second. This figure is calculated by multiplying the total number of texture units by the core clock 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 that the graphics card can possibly write to its local memory in one second - measured in millions of pixels per second. Pixel rate is worked out by multiplying the amount of Render Output Units by the the card's clock speed. ROPs (Raster Operations Pipelines - also called Render Output Units) are responsible for filling the screen with pixels (the image). The actual pixel output rate also depends on lots of other factors, most notably the memory bandwidth - the lower the bandwidth is, the lower the ability to get to the max fill rate.