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GeForce 8600 GTS vs GeForce GTS 250 1GB

Intro

The GeForce 8600 GTS makes use of a 80 nm design. nVidia has set the core speed at 675 MHz. The GDDR3 memory is set to run at a speed of 1000 MHz on this card. It features 32 SPUs along with 16 Texture Address Units and 8 ROPs.

Compare those specifications to the GeForce GTS 250 1GB, which comes with clock speeds of 738 MHz on the GPU, and 1100 MHz on the 1024 MB of GDDR3 RAM. It features 128 SPUs along with 64 TAUs and 16 ROPs.

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Power Usage and Theoretical Benchmarks

Power Consumption (Max TDP)

GeForce 8600 GTS 75 Watts
GeForce GTS 250 1GB 145 Watts
Difference: 70 Watts (93%)

Memory Bandwidth

Performance-wise, the GeForce GTS 250 1GB should theoretically be much better than the GeForce 8600 GTS overall. (explain)

GeForce GTS 250 1GB 70400 MB/sec
GeForce 8600 GTS 32000 MB/sec
Difference: 38400 (120%)

Texel Rate

The GeForce GTS 250 1GB is a lot (approximately 337%) better at AF than the GeForce 8600 GTS. (explain)

GeForce GTS 250 1GB 47232 Mtexels/sec
GeForce 8600 GTS 10800 Mtexels/sec
Difference: 36432 (337%)

Pixel Rate

If running with a high resolution is important to you, then the GeForce GTS 250 1GB is the winner, by far. (explain)

GeForce GTS 250 1GB 11808 Mpixels/sec
GeForce 8600 GTS 5400 Mpixels/sec
Difference: 6408 (119%)

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 GTS

Amazon.com

GeForce GTS 250 1GB

Amazon.com

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 GTS GeForce GTS 250 1GB
Manufacturer nVidia nVidia
Year April 2007 March 3, 2009
Code Name G84 G92a/b
Memory 512 MB 1024 MB
Core Speed 675 MHz 738 MHz
Memory Speed 2000 MHz 2200 MHz
Power (Max TDP) 75 watts 145 watts
Bandwidth 32000 MB/sec 70400 MB/sec
Texel Rate 10800 Mtexels/sec 47232 Mtexels/sec
Pixel Rate 5400 Mpixels/sec 11808 Mpixels/sec
Unified Shaders 32 128
Texture Mapping Units 16 64
Render Output Units 8 16
Bus Type GDDR3 GDDR3
Bus Width 128-bit 256-bit
Fab Process 80 nm 65/55 nm
Transistors 289 million 754 million
Bus PCIe x16 PCIe x16 2.0
DirectX Version DirectX 10 DirectX 10
OpenGL Version OpenGL 3.0 OpenGL 3.1

Memory Bandwidth: Memory bandwidth is the largest amount of information (measured in megabytes per second) that can be transferred across the external memory interface in a second. The number is worked out by multiplying the interface width by its memory clock speed. If the card has DDR type RAM, it should be multiplied by 2 once again. If DDR5, multiply by ANOTHER 2x. The better the memory bandwidth, the better the card will be in general. It especially helps with AA, 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 clock speed of the chip. The better this number, the better the video card will be at texture filtering (anisotropic filtering - AF). It is measured in millions of texels applied in a second.

Pixel Rate: Pixel rate is the maximum number of pixels the video card can possibly record to the local memory in one second - measured in millions of pixels per second. The number is calculated by multiplying the number of Render Output Units by the the core speed of the card. ROPs (Raster Operations Pipelines - aka Render Output Units) are responsible for drawing the pixels (image) on the screen. The actual pixel rate is also dependant on lots of other factors, most notably the memory bandwidth - the lower the bandwidth is, the lower the ability to reach the max fill rate.

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