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Framebuffer Ram size vs. memory bus type?

Last response: in Graphics & Displays
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September 6, 2011 12:43:09 AM

I would like to know if a video card with more ram and a smaller bus type is better than less ram and higher bus type.

I'm looking at EVGA GeForce® GTX 550 Ti with 2gb ram and the ATI Radeon HD6870 1 GB.

The Nvidia card has a bus type of 192bit while the ATI has 256bit.

The Nvidia costs less than the ATI and it has double the ram.
a c 254 U Graphics card
September 6, 2011 1:18:06 AM

I can't seem to find the 550 Ti you are refering to but I did come accross this ;EVGA 02G-P3-1568-KR GeForce GTX 560 Ti (Fermi) 2GB 256-bit GDDR5 PCI Express 2.0 x16 HDCP Ready SLI Support Video Card.
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a c 173 U Graphics card
September 6, 2011 2:28:05 AM

the ati card poops all over the 550ti. a 550ti is roughly equivelant to an ati 6770/5770. 2gb on a slow 550ti is a huge waste. Read reviews, its the only accurate way to guage a cards performance.
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September 6, 2011 2:49:47 AM

http://www.amazon.com/EVGA-GeForce®-GDDR5-PCI-Express-02G-P3-1559-KR/dp/B004XUCCS6/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1315277101&sr=8-1

I'm referring to this card. I've read reviews that it plays the most current games on high settings with high frame rate. I'm wondering why it costs less and has 2gb compared to a 2gb Radeon.

Are you saying that more ram and slower bus speed is worse than less ram and faster bus?
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a c 176 U Graphics card
September 6, 2011 3:09:40 AM

Which car is faster, a 4 door with 16" tires or a 2 door with 15" tires? There are so many things that make up the speed of a car(d) that you can't just look at 2 specs. You have to consider the card overall to know what its speed might be. As iam2thecrow said, you need to look at reviews to know how a card performs.
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a c 173 U Graphics card
September 6, 2011 5:04:11 AM

^another analogy, what car is faster, one with a 5.0L V8, or one with a 2.0L 4cyl Turbo charged engine? Bigger isn't always better. The only way to know is to put it on a track and test it, just like you can test vid cards and measure the speed (FPS)
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a c 254 U Graphics card
September 6, 2011 5:18:42 AM

I am saying that each manufacturer competes with the other on a lot of different levels. They will put out a card that the real power users will go after , and then they will put out a card the above average person will go after amd so on down to the low budget person. Each card has a set of specifacations and feature set and you really have to do your home work by looking at all the review sites to see what cards are doing what performance with what games , and you have to find your card and the games you like and see what these sites say about them.The 192 and 256 bit you are refering to is the bus width and the bus width in comination with memory clock determine how many gigabits per second the card will produce. In the two cards you are refering to one has 2 gb ram while the ATI card has the wider bus and only 1 gb of ram. But that is not all that goes into what the make up of the card that would make one better than the other , Nvidia cards have cuda cores Ati does not , what is the core clock speed , what is the texture fill rate , what is the memory clock speed , that is why you have to do your homework and search out these other review sites.
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September 6, 2011 3:06:41 PM

I have checked all of that information before asking my question. I used gpureview.com to compare the 2 cards. Even though it shows all that technical data and some explanation, I don't understand most of it. One card has an advantage in some areas and the other has an advantage in others.

I'm sure that most people would say that a higher bus width is better. But I don't understand how important is the ram in a card.

This GTX 590 http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168... has a bus width of 768bit and 3gb ram.

A Radeon HD 6990 has a bus width of 256bit and 4gb ram.

These look like the top 2 cards from both brands. But which one is better?
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Best solution

a b U Graphics card
September 6, 2011 3:21:15 PM

assasingreed said:
I have checked all of that information before asking my question. I used gpureview.com to compare the 2 cards. Even though it shows all that technical data and some explanation, I don't understand most of it. One card has an advantage in some areas and the other has an advantage in others.

I'm sure that most people would say that a higher bus width is better. But I don't understand how important is the ram in a card.

This GTX 590 http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168... has a bus width of 768bit and 3gb ram.

A Radeon HD 6990 has a bus width of 256bit and 4gb ram.

These look like the top 2 cards from both brands. But which one is better?


The one that better suit your needs :p 

That's the easy response, I know, but from the performance stand point it translates to: "the games where the card you look at, performs the best".

If it's an overall experience you're looking for, the 6870 1GB is comparable to a GTX560ti 1GB. The 550ti 1/2GB is comparable to a 6770 1GB. At least, when the bottom line is FPS at a certain quality settings. Memory bandwidth and size are important and show benefits at different points, so asserting a phrase like "bandwidth is king over memory size", it's just plain false; even if it matters more than size most of the time :p 

Hope that helps you a little.

Cheers!

EDIT: Typo
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September 7, 2011 10:09:14 PM

Best answer selected by assasingreed.
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