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Radeon HD 6870 vs Radeon R9 M290X

Intro

The Radeon HD 6870 has a GPU clock speed of 900 MHz, and the 1024 MB of GDDR5 RAM is set to run at 1050 MHz through a 256-bit bus. It also features 1120 SPUs, 56 TAUs, and 32 ROPs.

Compare those specifications to the Radeon R9 M290X, which features core clock speeds of 850 MHz on the GPU, and 1200 MHz on the 4096 MB of GDDR5 memory. It features 1280 SPUs as well as 80 Texture Address Units and 32 Rasterization Operator Units.

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Power Usage and Theoretical Benchmarks

Power Consumption (Max TDP)

Radeon R9 M290X 100 Watts
Radeon HD 6870 151 Watts
Difference: 51 Watts (51%)

Memory Bandwidth

Performance-wise, the Radeon R9 M290X should theoretically be just a bit superior to the Radeon HD 6870 overall. (explain)

Radeon R9 M290X 153600 MB/sec
Radeon HD 6870 134400 MB/sec
Difference: 19200 (14%)

Texel Rate

The Radeon R9 M290X should be much (approximately 35%) better at AF than the Radeon HD 6870. (explain)

Radeon R9 M290X 68000 Mtexels/sec
Radeon HD 6870 50400 Mtexels/sec
Difference: 17600 (35%)

Pixel Rate

If using lots of anti-aliasing is important to you, then the Radeon HD 6870 is a better choice, though only just barely. (explain)

Radeon HD 6870 28800 Mpixels/sec
Radeon R9 M290X 27200 Mpixels/sec
Difference: 1600 (6%)

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 6870

Amazon.com

Check prices at:

Radeon R9 M290X

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 Radeon HD 6870 Radeon R9 M290X
Manufacturer AMD AMD
Year October 2010 May 1 2014
Code Name Barts XT Neptune XT
Memory 1024 MB 4096 MB
Core Speed 900 MHz 850 MHz
Memory Speed 4200 MHz 4800 MHz
Power (Max TDP) 151 watts 100 watts
Bandwidth 134400 MB/sec 153600 MB/sec
Texel Rate 50400 Mtexels/sec 68000 Mtexels/sec
Pixel Rate 28800 Mpixels/sec 27200 Mpixels/sec
Unified Shaders 1120 1280
Texture Mapping Units 56 80
Render Output Units 32 32
Bus Type GDDR5 GDDR5
Bus Width 256-bit 256-bit
Fab Process 40 nm 28 nm
Transistors 1700 million (Unknown) million
Bus PCIe x16 PCIe 3.0 x16
DirectX Version DirectX 11 DirectX 11.2
OpenGL Version OpenGL 4.1 OpenGL 4.3

Memory Bandwidth: Memory bandwidth is the maximum amount of information (measured in megabytes per second) that can be transferred across the external memory interface within a second. It's calculated by multiplying the interface width by its memory clock speed. In the case of DDR type memory, the result should be multiplied by 2 once again. If DDR5, multiply by ANOTHER 2x. The higher the card's 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 applied per second. This 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 in one second.

Pixel Rate: Pixel rate is the most pixels the video card could possibly record to the local memory in one second - measured in millions of pixels per second. The figure is worked out by multiplying the amount of ROPs by the the core 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 output rate also depends on quite a few other factors, most notably the memory bandwidth - the lower the bandwidth is, the lower the ability to get to the maximum fill rate.

Display Prices

Hide Prices

Radeon HD 6870

Amazon.com

Check prices at:

Radeon R9 M290X

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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