Compare any two graphics cards:
GeForce 8600 GTS vs GeForce GTS 250 1GB
IntroThe GeForce 8600 GTS comes with core speeds of 675 MHz on the GPU, and 1000 MHz on the 512 MB of GDDR3 memory. It features 32 SPUs along with 16 TAUs and 8 ROPs.
Compare all that to the GeForce GTS 250 1GB, which comes with a core clock speed of 738 MHz and a GDDR3 memory speed of 1100 MHz. It also uses a 256-bit bus, and uses a 65/55 nm design. It is made up of 128 SPUs, 64 Texture Address Units, and 16 ROPs.
Power Usage and Theoretical Benchmarks
Power Consumption (Max TDP)
Theoretically speaking, the GeForce GTS 250 1GB is 120% faster than the GeForce 8600 GTS overall, because of its higher bandwidth. (explain)
Texel RateThe GeForce GTS 250 1GB will be much (about 337%) more effective at anisotropic filtering than the GeForce 8600 GTS. (explain)
Pixel RateIf running with a high resolution is important to you, then the GeForce GTS 250 1GB is a better choice, by a large margin. (explain)
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.
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.
Memory Bandwidth: Bandwidth is the maximum amount of information (counted in MB per second) that can be transferred past the external memory interface in a second. It's worked out by multiplying the bus width by its memory speed. In the case of DDR memory, it must be multiplied by 2 again. If DDR5, multiply by 4 instead. The higher the bandwidth is, the faster the card will be in general. It especially helps with anti-aliasing, HDR and high resolutions.
Texel Rate: Texel rate is the maximum number of texture map elements (texels) that can be applied in one second. This number is worked out by multiplying the total number of texture units by the core speed of the chip. The better the texel rate, the better the video 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 maximum amount of pixels the video card can possibly record to the local memory per second - measured in millions of pixels per second. The figure is calculated by multiplying the amount of Render Output Units by the the card's clock speed. ROPs (Raster Operations Pipelines - sometimes also referred to as Render Output Units) are responsible for outputting the pixels (image) to the screen. The actual pixel rate also depends on many other factors, most notably the memory bandwidth of the card - the lower the bandwidth is, the lower the ability to reach the maximum fill rate.