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GeForce GTX 480 vs Radeon HD 7870

Intro

The GeForce GTX 480 makes use of a 40 nm design. nVidia has clocked the core speed at 700 MHz. The GDDR5 RAM works at a frequency of 924 MHz on this model. It features 480 SPUs as well as 60 TAUs and 48 ROPs.

Compare that to the Radeon HD 7870, which comes with core clock speeds of 1000 MHz on the GPU, and 1200 MHz on the 2048 MB of GDDR5 memory. It features 1280 SPUs as well as 80 Texture Address Units and 32 Rasterization Operator Units.

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Benchmarks

These are real-world performance benchmarks that were submitted by Hardware Compare users. The scores seen here are the average of all benchmarks submitted for each respective test and hardware.

3DMark Fire Strike Graphics Score

Radeon HD 7870 6230 points
GeForce GTX 480 3650 points
Difference: 2580 (71%)

Power Usage and Theoretical Benchmarks

Power Consumption (Max TDP)

Radeon HD 7870 175 Watts
GeForce GTX 480 250 Watts
Difference: 75 Watts (43%)

Memory Bandwidth

Theoretically, the GeForce GTX 480 should be just a bit faster than the Radeon HD 7870 in general. (explain)

GeForce GTX 480 177408 MB/sec
Radeon HD 7870 153600 MB/sec
Difference: 23808 (16%)

Texel Rate

The Radeon HD 7870 will be much (more or less 90%) better at AF than the GeForce GTX 480. (explain)

Radeon HD 7870 80000 Mtexels/sec
GeForce GTX 480 42000 Mtexels/sec
Difference: 38000 (90%)

Pixel Rate

The GeForce GTX 480 should be a small bit (about 5%) better at full screen anti-aliasing than the Radeon HD 7870, and should be able to handle higher resolutions without losing too much performance. (explain)

GeForce GTX 480 33600 Mpixels/sec
Radeon HD 7870 32000 Mpixels/sec
Difference: 1600 (5%)

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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GeForce GTX 480

Amazon.com

Check prices at:

Radeon HD 7870

Amazon.com

Check prices at:

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 480 Radeon HD 7870
Manufacturer nVidia AMD
Year March 2010 March 2012
Code Name GF100 Pitcairn XT
Memory 1536 MB 2048 MB
Core Speed 700 MHz 1000 MHz
Memory Speed 3696 MHz 4800 MHz
Power (Max TDP) 250 watts 175 watts
Bandwidth 177408 MB/sec 153600 MB/sec
Texel Rate 42000 Mtexels/sec 80000 Mtexels/sec
Pixel Rate 33600 Mpixels/sec 32000 Mpixels/sec
Unified Shaders 480 1280
Texture Mapping Units 60 80
Render Output Units 48 32
Bus Type GDDR5 GDDR5
Bus Width 384-bit 256-bit
Fab Process 40 nm 28 nm
Transistors 3000 million 2800 million
Bus PCIe x16 PCIe 3.0 x16
DirectX Version DirectX 11 DirectX 11.1
OpenGL Version OpenGL 4.1 OpenGL 4.2

Memory Bandwidth: Bandwidth is the maximum amount of data (counted in MB per second) that can be moved over the external memory interface in a second. It is calculated by multiplying the card's interface width by the speed of its memory. 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 memory bandwidth, the faster the card will be in general. It especially helps with anti-aliasing, High Dynamic Range and high resolutions.

Texel Rate: Texel rate is the maximum number of texture map elements (texels) that are processed per second. This number is calculated by multiplying the total number of texture units of the card by the core speed of the chip. The better the texel rate, the better the graphics 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 maximum number of pixels that the graphics card could possibly write to the local memory per second - measured in millions of pixels per second. The number is worked out by multiplying the number of Render Output Units by the the card's clock speed. ROPs (Raster Operations Pipelines - also sometimes called Render Output Units) are responsible for drawing the pixels (image) on the screen. The actual pixel fill rate also depends on many other factors, especially the memory bandwidth - the lower the memory bandwidth is, the lower the ability to get to the max fill rate.

Display Prices

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GeForce GTX 480

Amazon.com

Check prices at:

Radeon HD 7870

Amazon.com

Check prices at:

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.

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