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GeForce 8600 GT 512MB DDR2 vs Radeon HD 3870 1GB

Intro

The GeForce 8600 GT 512MB DDR2 comes with core speeds of 540 MHz on the GPU, and 400 MHz on the 512 MB of DDR2 memory. It features 32 SPUs as well as 16 Texture Address Units and 8 ROPs.

Compare those specs to the Radeon HD 3870 1GB, which has a clock frequency of 775 MHz and a GDDR4 memory speed of 1125 MHz. It also features a 256-bit bus, and uses a 55 nm design. It is made up of 320(64x5) SPUs, 16 Texture Address Units, and 16 ROPs.

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Power Usage and Theoretical Benchmarks

Power Consumption (Max TDP)

GeForce 8600 GT 512MB DDR2 47 Watts
Radeon HD 3870 1GB 106 Watts
Difference: 59 Watts (126%)

Memory Bandwidth

As far as performance goes, the Radeon HD 3870 1GB should theoretically be quite a bit better than the GeForce 8600 GT 512MB DDR2 in general. (explain)

Radeon HD 3870 1GB 72000 MB/sec
GeForce 8600 GT 512MB DDR2 12800 MB/sec
Difference: 59200 (463%)

Texel Rate

The Radeon HD 3870 1GB is quite a bit (more or less 44%) better at anisotropic filtering than the GeForce 8600 GT 512MB DDR2. (explain)

Radeon HD 3870 1GB 12400 Mtexels/sec
GeForce 8600 GT 512MB DDR2 8640 Mtexels/sec
Difference: 3760 (44%)

Pixel Rate

The Radeon HD 3870 1GB will be much (more or less 187%) faster with regards to anti-aliasing than the GeForce 8600 GT 512MB DDR2, and also capable of handling higher screen resolutions better. (explain)

Radeon HD 3870 1GB 12400 Mpixels/sec
GeForce 8600 GT 512MB DDR2 4320 Mpixels/sec
Difference: 8080 (187%)

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 3870 1GB

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 3870 1GB
Manufacturer nVidia AMD
Year April 2007 Nov 19, 2007
Code Name G84 RV670 XT
Memory 512 MB 1024 MB
Core Speed 540 MHz 775 MHz
Memory Speed 800 MHz 2250 MHz
Power (Max TDP) 47 watts 106 watts
Bandwidth 12800 MB/sec 72000 MB/sec
Texel Rate 8640 Mtexels/sec 12400 Mtexels/sec
Pixel Rate 4320 Mpixels/sec 12400 Mpixels/sec
Unified Shaders 32 320(64x5)
Texture Mapping Units 16 16
Render Output Units 8 16
Bus Type DDR2 GDDR4
Bus Width 128-bit 256-bit
Fab Process 80 nm 55 nm
Transistors 289 million (Unknown) million
Bus PCIe x16 PCIe 2.0 x16/AGP 8x
DirectX Version DirectX 10 DirectX 10.1
OpenGL Version OpenGL 3.0 OpenGL 3.0

Memory Bandwidth: Memory bandwidth is the maximum amount of data (measured in MB per second) that can be moved over the external memory interface in a second. The number is calculated by multiplying the card's bus width by the speed of its memory. If it uses DDR type RAM, it must be multiplied by 2 once again. If DDR5, multiply by ANOTHER 2x. The higher the card's memory bandwidth, the faster the card will be in general. It especially helps with AA, High Dynamic Range 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 amount of texture units of the card 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 per second.

Pixel Rate: Pixel rate is the maximum amount of pixels the video card can possibly record to the local memory in a second - measured in millions of pixels per second. The figure is calculated by multiplying the amount of Render Output Units by the the core clock speed. ROPs (Raster Operations Pipelines - also sometimes called Render Output Units) are responsible for outputting the pixels (image) to the screen. The actual pixel fill rate is also dependant on quite a few other factors, especially the memory bandwidth of the card - the lower the memory bandwidth is, the lower the ability to reach the maximum fill rate.

Display Prices

Hide Prices

GeForce 8600 GT 512MB DDR2

Amazon.com

Check prices at:

Radeon HD 3870 1GB

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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