AMD Radeon HD 7870 and Radeon HD 7850
Posted on: 03/04/2012 11:04 PM
March is a new month for AMD and it means a new set of Radeon HD 7000 series graphics cards for us. The new Radeon HD 7800 series includes the HD 7870 and HD 7850 and both are designed for serious gamers. Based on the same GCN (Graphics Core Next) architecture as the Radeon HD 7900 series, we are expecting good things...
AMD kick started things back in January with their flagship series codename Tahiti which are now the world’s fastest and most advanced GPUs. The Radeon HD 7970 and HD 7950 certainly are fast graphics cards but at $549 and $449 they are not for everyone.
A month later in February the Cape Verde GPUs followed as AMD unleashed the much more affordable Radeon HD 7700 series. Comprised of the Radeon HD 7770 and HD 7750 these cards cost $159 and $109 respectively making them a far more realistic choice for most gamers.
However despite smoking the previous generation Radeon HD 6770 and HD 6750 graphics cards the Radeon HD 7700 series didn’t prove to be all that impressive in terms of value. Existing graphics cards such as the GeForce GTX 550 Ti, GTX 560 and Radeon HD 6850 provide slightly more performance for roughly the same price.
This was disappointing news for gamers holding out for AMD’s new 28nm GPU’s. So will the Radeon HD 7800 series be more tempting for those looking to upgrade? Well on paper both look great as they feature 2.8 billion transistors, loads of compute power, heaps of memory bandwidth and an impressive power rating.
The Radeon HD 7870 comes clocked at 1GHz and with 1280 SPUs, 80 TAUs and 32 ROPs, has a compute performance of 2.56 TFLOPS along with a texture fill rate of 80GT/s and a pixel fill rate of 32GP/s. The HD 7870 is also armed with 2GB of GDDR5 memory clocked at 1.2GHz (4.8GHz DDR) and combine that with a 256-bit wide memory bus and you get an astonishing memory bandwidth of 153.6GB/s.
Then there is the slightly cut down Radeon HD 7850 which for the most part is a very similar animal featuring the exact same memory configuration which allows for the same 153.6GB/s bandwidth. The key changes have been made to the GPU which is now clocked at just 860MHz while the SPU count has been downgraded to 1024 and the TAUs have been reduced to 64 while there are still 32 ROPs.
In essence these downgrades mean that the Radeon HD 7850 will deliver roughly 30% less compute power so it will be interesting to see how that translates into gaming performance. With that said let jump straight into the benchmarks to find out...
Printed from Legion Hardware (http://www.legionhardware.com/articles_pages/amd_radeon_hd_7870_and_radeon_hd_7850,1.html)