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GeForce GTX 580 3GB vs GeForce GTX 590

Intro

The GeForce GTX 580 3GB uses a 40 nm design. nVidia has set the core speed at 772 MHz. The GDDR5 RAM is set to run at a speed of 1002 MHz on this particular model. It features 512 SPUs along with 64 Texture Address Units and 48 ROPs.

Compare that to the GeForce GTX 590, which features clock speeds of 607 MHz on the GPU, and 855 MHz on the 1536 MB of GDDR5 memory. It features 512 SPUs as well as 64 TAUs and 48 Rasterization Operator Units.

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Power Usage and Theoretical Benchmarks

Power Consumption (Max TDP)

GeForce GTX 580 3GB 244 Watts
GeForce GTX 590 365 Watts
Difference: 121 Watts (50%)

Memory Bandwidth

Theoretically speaking, the GeForce GTX 590 is 71% faster than the GeForce GTX 580 3GB in general, because of its greater bandwidth. (explain)

GeForce GTX 590 328320 MB/sec
GeForce GTX 580 3GB 192384 MB/sec
Difference: 135936 (71%)

Texel Rate

The GeForce GTX 590 should be quite a bit (approximately 57%) more effective at texture filtering than the GeForce GTX 580 3GB. (explain)

GeForce GTX 590 77696 Mtexels/sec
GeForce GTX 580 3GB 49408 Mtexels/sec
Difference: 28288 (57%)

Pixel Rate

If using high levels of AA is important to you, then the GeForce GTX 590 is a better choice, by a large margin. (explain)

GeForce GTX 590 58272 Mpixels/sec
GeForce GTX 580 3GB 37056 Mpixels/sec
Difference: 21216 (57%)

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.

Price Comparison

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GeForce GTX 580 3GB

Amazon.com

GeForce GTX 590

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

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Model GeForce GTX 580 3GB GeForce GTX 590
Manufacturer nVidia nVidia
Year November 2010 March 2011
Code Name GF110 GF110
Memory 3072 MB 1536 MB (x2)
Core Speed 772 MHz 607 MHz (x2)
Memory Speed 4008 MHz 3420 MHz (x2)
Power (Max TDP) 244 watts 365 watts
Bandwidth 192384 MB/sec 328320 MB/sec
Texel Rate 49408 Mtexels/sec 77696 Mtexels/sec
Pixel Rate 37056 Mpixels/sec 58272 Mpixels/sec
Unified Shaders 512 512 (x2)
Texture Mapping Units 64 64 (x2)
Render Output Units 48 48 (x2)
Bus Type GDDR5 GDDR5
Bus Width 384-bit 384-bit (x2)
Fab Process 40 nm 40 nm
Transistors 3000 million 3000 million
Bus PCIe x16 PCIe 2.0 x16
DirectX Version DirectX 11 DirectX 11
OpenGL Version OpenGL 4.1 OpenGL 4.1

Memory Bandwidth: Bandwidth is the largest amount of information (in units of MB per second) that can be transferred past the external memory interface within a second. It's calculated by multiplying the bus width by its memory clock speed. If the card has DDR type memory, it should be multiplied by 2 again. If it uses DDR5, multiply by 4 instead. The higher the bandwidth is, the better the card will be in general. It especially helps with AA, High Dynamic Range and high resolutions.

Texel Rate: Texel rate is the maximum texture map elements (texels) that are processed in one second. This is calculated by multiplying the total number of texture units by the core 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 processed in a second.

Pixel Rate: Pixel rate is the maximum amount of pixels the video card can possibly record to its local memory in one second - measured in millions of pixels per second. The number is calculated by multiplying the amount of Render Output Units by the the core clock speed. ROPs (Raster Operations Pipelines - aka Render Output Units) are responsible for filling the screen with pixels (the image). The actual pixel fill rate also depends on quite a few other factors, most notably the memory bandwidth - the lower the bandwidth is, the lower the ability to reach the maximum fill rate.

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