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Radeon HD 6790 vs Radeon HD 6870

Intro

The Radeon HD 6790 comes with core clock speeds of 840 MHz on the GPU, and 1050 MHz on the 1024 MB of GDDR5 memory. It features 800 SPUs along with 40 TAUs and 16 Rasterization Operator Units.

Compare those specs to the Radeon HD 6870, which features core clock speeds of 900 MHz on the GPU, and 1050 MHz on the 1024 MB of GDDR5 RAM. It features 1120 SPUs along with 56 Texture Address Units and 32 ROPs.

Display Graphs

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Power Usage and Theoretical Benchmarks

Power Consumption (Max TDP)

Radeon HD 6790 150 Watts
Radeon HD 6870 151 Watts
Difference: 1 Watts (1%)

Memory Bandwidth

Both cards have the exact same memory bandwidth, so in theory they should perform exactly the same. (explain)

Texel Rate

The Radeon HD 6870 is much (about 50%) better at AF than the Radeon HD 6790. (explain)

Radeon HD 6870 50400 Mtexels/sec
Radeon HD 6790 33600 Mtexels/sec
Difference: 16800 (50%)

Pixel Rate

If using lots of anti-aliasing is important to you, then the Radeon HD 6870 is a better choice, by a large margin. (explain)

Radeon HD 6870 28800 Mpixels/sec
Radeon HD 6790 13440 Mpixels/sec
Difference: 15360 (114%)

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

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Radeon HD 6790

Amazon.com

Radeon HD 6870

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 Radeon HD 6790 Radeon HD 6870
Manufacturer AMD AMD
Year April 2011 October 2010
Code Name Barts LE Barts XT
Memory 1024 MB 1024 MB
Core Speed 840 MHz 900 MHz
Memory Speed 4200 MHz 4200 MHz
Power (Max TDP) 150 watts 151 watts
Bandwidth 134400 MB/sec 134400 MB/sec
Texel Rate 33600 Mtexels/sec 50400 Mtexels/sec
Pixel Rate 13440 Mpixels/sec 28800 Mpixels/sec
Unified Shaders 800 1120
Texture Mapping Units 40 56
Render Output Units 16 32
Bus Type GDDR5 GDDR5
Bus Width 256-bit 256-bit
Fab Process 40 nm 40 nm
Transistors 1700 million 1700 million
Bus PCIe 2.1 x16 PCIe x16
DirectX Version DirectX 11 DirectX 11
OpenGL Version OpenGL 4.1 OpenGL 4.1

Memory Bandwidth: Memory bandwidth is the largest amount of information (in units of megabytes per second) that can be moved across the external memory interface within a second. It is worked out by multiplying the card's bus width by the speed of its memory. In the case of DDR RAM, it should be multiplied by 2 again. If DDR5, multiply by ANOTHER 2x. The higher the bandwidth is, 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 amount of texture map elements (texels) that are applied in one second. This number 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 graphics card will be at texture filtering (anisotropic filtering - AF). It is measured in millions of texels processed in one second.

Pixel Rate: Pixel rate is the maximum amount of pixels the graphics card could possibly record to its local memory per 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 filling the screen with pixels (the image). The actual pixel rate also depends on many other factors, especially the memory bandwidth of the card - the lower the bandwidth is, the lower the ability to reach the max fill rate.

Comments

3 Responses to “Radeon HD 6790 vs Radeon HD 6870”
$1000 and to include a monitor - PCMech Forums says:

[...] but the build I recomended has a much faster video card. For gaming the video card is paramount. Theoritical benchmark comparison between the 2 video cards based on specs The AMD 955 is still a heck of a [...]

Year of the Hackintosh? | Frank and Fedora's Blog says:

[...] A graphics card that is two product cycles ahead (AMD Radeon 6870 vs the top end Mac option of the 6790); see here for a comparison of raw benchmarks from each card [...]

yoki says:

Dual-6790 or Single-6870??

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