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pipeline vs core clock

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June 14, 2006 7:15:07 PM

some of todays cards have more pipeline than others and some cards have more clock speed. I am not considering memory speed and memory interface bcoz in the same price range they don't vary much. for example consider 2 cards

which have similar performance and price

------------- core clock------pipeline--------memory speed-------memory interface
x1800xt----625 MHz---------16--------------1.5 GHz---------------256 bit
7900GT---- 450 MHz---------24--------------1.32 GHz--------------256 bit


from this what I understand is, x1800xt processes data faster and delivers slower. while the 7900GT processes data slower but transfers faster. in average they get similar performance. my question is which I should buy for playing the type of games I play, I play mainly real time strategy games like bfme2, aoe3 etc. there are a lot army and heros on they playing field at a time that requires quick processing of grapchic data. so faster gpu speed should favour them. on the other hand first person shooter games require quick reflexes and have to move the playing field very quickly. but there are not many objects on the 3d view to process. so I think they require data transfer speed more hence cards with more pipeline should favour them.
am I missing something here? thanks.

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June 14, 2006 8:18:17 PM

Ati's new X1000 series cards don't have traditional 'pipelines' anymore, so it's not an easy comparison like it used to be.

Basically, google some benchmarks of the games you want to play, alittle research will pay off in the long run.

In the final analysis, you won't be dissapointed with either card, in general I tell people that will run the cards stock to get the X1800, but if you're an overclocker the 7900 GT is a better bet.
June 14, 2006 9:43:32 PM

Quote:
Ati's new X1000 series cards don't have traditional 'pipelines' anymore, so it's not an easy comparison like it used to be.


perhaps u can explain!!
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June 14, 2006 10:26:28 PM

Explain... well, traditionally 'pipelines' referred to a single TMU (texture management unit) attached to a single pixel processor. i.e. The Radeon 9700 PRO was an 8 pipeline card, it has eight TMUs, each one with a dedicated pixel processor (aka 'shader') of it's own.

The X1000 series has TMUs and pixel processors independant of each other. This allows for cards like the X1600, which has 4 TMUs and 12 pixel processors, it is neither a 4-pipeline or 12-pipeline card but somewhere in between.

Even though the X1800 XT has 16 TMUs and 16 pixel processors, it still works a little differently than a 16-pipeline card because they work independantly of each other.
June 14, 2006 10:35:43 PM

if you are going to overclock go with the 7900gt with a good case and airflow you could easily get the core up to speed and since it has 8 more pipes you would have a tremendous amount of power over that x1800 and even if you arent going to overclock i would still get that 7900gt
June 14, 2006 11:04:36 PM

Quote:
even if you arent going to overclock i would still get that 7900gt


Why?

At stock speeds it's the 7900's extra pipelines vs the X1800's higher clocks. It pretty much equals out.

Stock the X1800 XT is a tad faster at most things from the benches I've seen, and the X1800 series can perform OpenEXR HDR & Antialiasing at the same time, which the 7900GT can't. It's a nice feature.

The X1800's faster memory gives it a bit of an edge at stock speeds as well, when using AA.
June 14, 2006 11:13:40 PM

You can't really compare them since they're not the same architecture. That's like comparing AMD to Intel's Netburst and deciding between a higher core clock and a faster FSB.

ATI has more shader operations per clock cycle, whereas Nvidia does not and makes up for the performance difference in additional pipelines.
June 14, 2006 11:21:14 PM

I believe the X1800XT has a slight overall gaming edge to the 7900GT but as you have a preference for certain types of games you should read some reviews to see which does better in your games. Take a look at xbitlabs as they do a very comprenesive review of cards usually covering 2 dozen games in 5 different genres.
June 16, 2006 6:48:48 AM

you raise a good point i wont argue that but i guess it really come down to price and what name you want in your case i guess. but the only reson i would still get the 7900gt over the x1800 is the more mature Sli option over cross fire...dont get me wrong both great options but more mature drivers etc...my opionion ne way Ati makes good card dont get me wrong my 9600xt lasted me up until 2 months ago but off topic.... but yeah the 7900 has more pipes and i guess in my opnion would be a better overclocker and well i like to overclock
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