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Differences What are the advantages of each

Front view of Radeon HD 7870

Reasons to consider the
AMD Radeon HD 7870

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Better PassMark score 4,339 vs 2,534 More than 70% better PassMark score
Higher clock speed 1,000 MHz vs 800 MHz 25% higher clock speed
Higher effective memory clock speed 4,800 MHz vs 4,200 MHz Around 15% higher effective memory clock speed
Higher memory clock speed 1,200 MHz vs 1,050 MHz Around 15% higher memory clock speed
Lower TDP 175W vs 254W More than 30% lower TDP
Front view of Radeon HD 6850 X2

Reasons to consider the
Generic Radeon HD 6850 X2

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Is dual GPU Yes vs No About half of graphics cards are dual GPU
Much higher memory bandwidth 268.8 GB/s vs 153.6 GB/s More than 75% higher memory bandwidth
More memory 4,096 MB vs 2,048 MB 2x more memory
Significantly more render output processors 64 vs 32 Twice as many render output processors
Higher pixel rate 51.2 GPixel/s vs 32 GPixel/s More than 60% higher pixel rate
Much wider memory bus 512 bit vs 256 bit 2x wider memory bus
More shading units 1,920 vs 1,280 640 more shading units
Slightly better floating-point performance 3,072 GFLOPS vs 2,560 GFLOPS 20% better floating-point performance
More texture mapping units 96 vs 80 16 more texture mapping units
Slightly more compute units 24 vs 20 4 more compute units

Benchmarks Real world tests of Radeon HD 7870 vs 6850 X2

PassMark Industry standard benchmark for overall graphics card performanceData courtesy Passmark

Features Key features of the Radeon HD 7870  vs 6850 X2 

memory bandwidth Rate at which data can be read from or stored in onboard memory

Radeon HD 7870
153.6 GB/s
Radeon HD 6850 X2
268.8 GB/s

pixel rate Number of pixels a graphics card can render to the screen every second

Radeon HD 7870
32 GPixel/s
Radeon HD 6850 X2
51.2 GPixel/s

texture rate Speed at which a graphics card can perform texture mapping

Radeon HD 7870
80 GTexel/s
Radeon HD 6850 X2
76.8 GTexel/s

floating point performance How fast the gpu can crunch numbers

Radeon HD 7870
2,560 GFLOPS
Radeon HD 6850 X2
3,072 GFLOPS

shading units Subcomponents of the gpu, these run in parallel to enable fast pixel shading

texture mapping units Built into each gpu, these resize and rotate bitmaps for texturing scenes

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