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GeForce 8600 GT 512MB DDR2 vs Radeon HD 7870 XT

Intro

The GeForce 8600 GT 512MB DDR2 makes use of a 80 nm design. nVidia has clocked the core frequency at 540 MHz. The DDR2 RAM works at a frequency of 400 MHz on this particular model. It features 32 SPUs as well as 16 TAUs and 8 ROPs.

Compare all that to the Radeon HD 7870 XT, which has a clock frequency of 925 MHz and a GDDR5 memory frequency of 1500 MHz. It also makes use of a 256-bit memory bus, and uses a 28 nm design. It is comprised of 1536 SPUs, 96 Texture Address Units, and 32 ROPs.

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Power Usage and Theoretical Benchmarks

Power Consumption (Max TDP)

GeForce 8600 GT 512MB DDR2 47 Watts
Radeon HD 7870 XT 185 Watts
Difference: 138 Watts (294%)

Memory Bandwidth

In theory, the Radeon HD 7870 XT should be 1400% quicker than the GeForce 8600 GT 512MB DDR2 in general, because of its higher bandwidth. (explain)

Radeon HD 7870 XT 192000 MB/sec
GeForce 8600 GT 512MB DDR2 12800 MB/sec
Difference: 179200 (1400%)

Texel Rate

The Radeon HD 7870 XT should be a lot (approximately 928%) faster with regards to anisotropic filtering than the GeForce 8600 GT 512MB DDR2. (explain)

Radeon HD 7870 XT 88800 Mtexels/sec
GeForce 8600 GT 512MB DDR2 8640 Mtexels/sec
Difference: 80160 (928%)

Pixel Rate

If running with high levels of AA is important to you, then the Radeon HD 7870 XT is a better choice, by far. (explain)

Radeon HD 7870 XT 29600 Mpixels/sec
GeForce 8600 GT 512MB DDR2 4320 Mpixels/sec
Difference: 25280 (585%)

Please note that the above 'benchmarks' are all just theoretical - the results were calculated based on the card's specifications, and real-world performance may (and probably will) vary at least a bit.

Price Comparison

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GeForce 8600 GT 512MB DDR2

Amazon.com

Check prices at:

Radeon HD 7870 XT

Amazon.com

Check prices at:

Please note that the price comparisons are based on search keywords - sometimes it might show cards with very similar names that are not exactly the same as the one chosen in the comparison. We do try to filter out the wrong results as best we can, though.

Specifications

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Model GeForce 8600 GT 512MB DDR2 Radeon HD 7870 XT
Manufacturer nVidia AMD
Year April 2007 November 2012
Code Name G84 Tahiti LE
Memory 512 MB 2048 MB
Core Speed 540 MHz 925 MHz
Memory Speed 800 MHz 6000 MHz
Power (Max TDP) 47 watts 185 watts
Bandwidth 12800 MB/sec 192000 MB/sec
Texel Rate 8640 Mtexels/sec 88800 Mtexels/sec
Pixel Rate 4320 Mpixels/sec 29600 Mpixels/sec
Unified Shaders 32 1536
Texture Mapping Units 16 96
Render Output Units 8 32
Bus Type DDR2 GDDR5
Bus Width 128-bit 256-bit
Fab Process 80 nm 28 nm
Transistors 289 million 4313 million
Bus PCIe x16 PCIe 3.0 x16
DirectX Version DirectX 10 DirectX 11.1
OpenGL Version OpenGL 3.0 OpenGL 4.3

Memory Bandwidth: Memory bandwidth is the maximum amount of information (measured in megabytes per second) that can be transported across the external memory interface in a second. It's calculated by multiplying the bus width by its memory speed. If it uses DDR memory, the result should be multiplied by 2 again. If DDR5, multiply by ANOTHER 2x. The higher the card's memory bandwidth, the better the card will be in general. It especially helps with anti-aliasing, HDR and higher screen resolutions.

Texel Rate: Texel rate is the maximum amount of texture map elements (texels) that are applied per second. This figure is calculated by multiplying the total texture units by the core speed of the chip. The better the texel rate, the better the card will be at texture filtering (anisotropic filtering - AF). It is measured in millions of texels applied in one second.

Pixel Rate: Pixel rate is the most pixels the graphics card can possibly record to its local memory per second - measured in millions of pixels per second. The figure is worked out by multiplying the number of Render Output Units by the clock speed of the card. ROPs (Raster Operations Pipelines - also called Render Output Units) are responsible for outputting the pixels (image) to the screen. The actual pixel fill rate is also dependant on lots of other factors, especially the memory bandwidth - the lower the memory bandwidth is, the lower the ability to reach the max fill rate.

Display Prices

Hide Prices

GeForce 8600 GT 512MB DDR2

Amazon.com

Check prices at:

Radeon HD 7870 XT

Amazon.com

Check prices at:

Please note that the price comparisons are based on search keywords - sometimes it might show cards with very similar names that are not exactly the same as the one chosen in the comparison. We do try to filter out the wrong results as best we can, though.

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