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GeForce GTX 550 Ti vs Radeon HD 5870

Intro

The GeForce GTX 550 Ti comes with core clock speeds of 900 MHz on the GPU, and 1026 MHz on the 1024 MB of GDDR5 memory. It features 192 SPUs along with 32 TAUs and 24 ROPs.

Compare those specs to the Radeon HD 5870, which has a GPU core clock speed of 850 MHz, and 1024 MB of GDDR5 RAM running at 1200 MHz through a 256-bit bus. It also is made up of 1600(320x5) SPUs, 80 Texture Address Units, and 32 ROPs.

(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

Performance-wise, the Radeon HD 5870 should in theory be quite a bit better than the GeForce GTX 550 Ti in general. (explain)

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

Texel Rate

The Radeon HD 5870 will be a lot (approximately 136%) faster with regards to anisotropic filtering 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

If using high levels of AA is important to you, then the Radeon HD 5870 is superior to the GeForce GTX 550 Ti, by far. (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: Memory bandwidth is the max amount of information (in units of megabytes per second) that can be transported past the external memory interface within a second. It is worked out by multiplying the interface width by its memory speed. If the card has DDR RAM, the result should be multiplied by 2 again. If it uses DDR5, multiply by 4 instead. The better the card's memory bandwidth, the faster the card will be in general. It especially helps with AA, High Dynamic Range and higher screen resolutions.

Texel Rate: Texel rate is the maximum texture map elements (texels) that are applied in one second. This is calculated by multiplying the total texture units by the core speed of the chip. The higher this number, the better the card will be at handling texture filtering (anisotropic filtering - AF). It is measured in millions of texels applied per second.

Pixel Rate: Pixel rate is the maximum number of pixels the graphics card can possibly write to the local memory in a second - measured in millions of pixels per second. The figure is calculated by multiplying the amount of Raster Operations Pipelines by the the card's clock speed. ROPs (Raster Operations Pipelines - sometimes also referred to as Render Output Units) are responsible for filling the screen with pixels (the image). The actual pixel rate also depends on lots of other factors, most notably the memory bandwidth - the lower the memory bandwidth is, the lower the potential to reach the max fill rate.

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