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Gaming Performance Comparison

Recommended System Requirements
Game GeForce 9800 GTX SLI Radeon HD 6870 IceQ X Edition
Red Dead Redemption 2 382% 189%
Cyberpunk 2077 562% 297%
Doom Eternal 314% 149%
Dragon Ball Z Kakarot 197% 78%
Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 382% 189%
Microsoft Flight Simulator 562% 297%
FIFA 20 157% 54%
Grand Theft Auto VI 636% 342%
Star Wars: Jedi - Fallen Order 562% 297%
Need For Speed Heat 382% 189%

In terms of overall gaming performance, the graphical capabilities of the AMD Radeon HD 6870 IceQ X Edition are significantly better than the Nvidia GeForce 9800 GTX SLI.

The HD 6870 has a 225 MHz higher core clock speed than the 9800 GTX, but the 9800 GTX has 56 more Texture Mapping Units than the HD 6870. As a result, the 9800 GTX exhibits a 25.2 GTexel/s better Texture Fill Rate than the HD 6870. This still holds weight but shader performance is generally more relevant, particularly since both of these GPUs support at least DirectX 10.

The HD 6870 has a 225 MHz higher core clock speed than the 9800 GTX and the same number of Render Output Units. This results in the HD 6870 providing 7.2 GPixel/s better pixeling performance. However, both GPUs support DirectX 9 or above, and pixeling performance is only really relevant when comparing older cards.

The HD 6870 was released over a year more recently than the 9800 GTX, and so the HD 6870 is likely to have better driver support, meaning it will be more optimized for running the latest games when compared to the 9800 GTX.

The GeForce 9800 GTX SLI and the Radeon HD 6870 IceQ X Edition have the same amount of video memory, but are likely to provide slightly different experiences when displaying game textures at high resolutions.

The 9800 GTX has 6.4 GB/sec greater memory bandwidth than the HD 6870, which means that the memory performance of the 9800 GTX is marginally better than the HD 6870.

The GeForce 9800 GTX SLI has 128 Shader Processing Units and the Radeon HD 6870 IceQ X Edition has 1120. However, the actual shader performance of the 9800 GTX is 86 and the actual shader performance of the HD 6870 is 504. The HD 6870 having 418 better shader performance and an altogether better performance when taking into account other relevant data means that the HD 6870 delivers a marginally smoother and more efficient experience when processing graphical data than the 9800 GTX.

The HD 6870 transistor size technology is 25 nm (nanometers) smaller than the 9800 GTX. This means that the HD 6870 is expected to run slightly cooler and achieve higher clock frequencies than the 9800 GTX.

The GeForce 9800 GTX SLI requires 280 Watts to run but there is no entry for the Radeon HD 6870 IceQ X Edition. We would recommend a PSU with at least 600 Watts for the 9800 GTX and a PSU with at least 500 Watts for the HD 6870. The 9800 GTX has been recommended a PSU with 100 Watts more than the HD 6870. The difference is significant enough that the 9800 GTX may have an adverse affect on your yearly electricity bills in comparison to the HD 6870.

Game FPS Benchmarks On Ultra

GPU Architecture

Core Speed675 MHzvs900 MHz
Boost Clock-vs-
ArchitectureG92 (x2)Terascale 2 Barts XT
OC Potential Poor vs Fair
Driver Support - vs Poor
Release Date01 Apr 2008vs01 Mar 2011
GPU LinkGD LinkGD Link

Resolution Performance

1366x768 - green tick vs green tick -
1600x900 - vs green tick
1920x1080 - vs green tick
2560x1440 - vs green tick
3840x2160 - green tick vs green tick -

GPU Memory

Memory1024 MBvs1024 MB
Memory Speed1100 MHzvs1050 MHz
Memory Bus512 Bitvs256 Bit
Memory TypeDDR3vsGDDR5
Memory Bandwidth140.8GB/secvs134.4GB/sec
L2 Cache 0 KB vs green tick 512 KB
Delta Color Compression no vs no
Memory Performance 0% green tick vs green tick 0%

GPU Display

Shader Processing Units128vs1120
Actual Shader Performance4%vs24%
Texture Mapping Units112vs56
Texture Rate75.6 GTexel/svs50.4 GTexel/s
Render Output Units32vs32
Pixel Rate21.6 GPixel/svs28.8 GPixel/s

GPU Outputs

Max Digital Resolution (WxH)2560x1600vs2560x1600
VGA Connections0vs0
DVI Connections2vs2
HDMI Connections0vs1
DisplayPort Connections-vs-

GPU Power Requirements

Max Power280 Watts-
Recommended PSU600 Watts & 30 Ampsvs500 Watts

GPU Features

Shader Model3.0vs5.0
Open GL2.1vs4.3
Open CL-vs-
Notebook GPUnono

GPU Supporting Hardware

Recommended ProcessorIntel Core 2 Quad Q6600 2.4GHzvsIntel Core i5-760 2.8GHz
Recommended RAM6 GBvs8 GB
Maximum Recommended Gaming Resolution1366x768vs1920x1080

Gaming Performance Value

Performance Value

GPU Mini Review

Mini ReviewThe SLI setup of GeForce 9800 GTX.Radeon HD 6870 IceQ X Edition is a special edition of the high-end Radeon HD 6870. See its page for more information about it.
Compared to the Radeon HD 6870, this Special Edition has exactly the same specifications and the only new feature is an improved cooling system which doesn't affect performance directly.
Therefore, the performance is EXACTLY like the standard Radeon HD 6870 and enough to run today's demanding games at maximum settings while Very Demanding games like Metro 2033 or Max Payne 3, will probably require reduced settings to run smoothly.
Recommended CPU
Possible GPU Upgrades
GPU Variants