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GeForce 8600 GTS vs Radeon HD 3690/3830

Intro

The GeForce 8600 GTS has a GPU core speed of 675 MHz, and the 512 MB of GDDR3 memory is set to run at 1000 MHz through a 128-bit bus. It also is made up of 32 SPUs, 16 Texture Address Units, and 8 ROPs.

Compare all of that to the Radeon HD 3690/3830, which features GPU clock speed of 668 MHz, and 256 MB of GDDR3 RAM running at 828 MHz through a 128-bit bus. It also is made up of 320(64x5) Stream Processors, 16 Texture Address Units, and 16 ROPs.

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Power Usage and Theoretical Benchmarks

Both cards have the same power consumption.

Memory Bandwidth

In theory, the GeForce 8600 GTS should be much faster than the Radeon HD 3690/3830 overall. (explain)

GeForce 8600 GTS 32000 MB/sec
Radeon HD 3690/3830 26496 MB/sec
Difference: 5504 (21%)

Texel Rate

The GeForce 8600 GTS will be just a bit (about 1%) faster with regards to texture filtering than the Radeon HD 3690/3830. (explain)

GeForce 8600 GTS 10800 Mtexels/sec
Radeon HD 3690/3830 10688 Mtexels/sec
Difference: 112 (1%)

Pixel Rate

If running with lots of anti-aliasing is important to you, then the Radeon HD 3690/3830 is a better choice, by a large margin. (explain)

Radeon HD 3690/3830 10688 Mpixels/sec
GeForce 8600 GTS 5400 Mpixels/sec
Difference: 5288 (98%)

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

Check prices at:

Radeon HD 3690/3830

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 GTS Radeon HD 3690/3830
Manufacturer nVidia AMD
Year April 2007 2008
Code Name G84 RV670 PRO
Memory 512 MB 256 MB
Core Speed 675 MHz 668 MHz
Memory Speed 2000 MHz 1656 MHz
Power (Max TDP) 75 watts 75 watts
Bandwidth 32000 MB/sec 26496 MB/sec
Texel Rate 10800 Mtexels/sec 10688 Mtexels/sec
Pixel Rate 5400 Mpixels/sec 10688 Mpixels/sec
Unified Shaders 32 320(64x5)
Texture Mapping Units 16 16
Render Output Units 8 16
Bus Type GDDR3 GDDR3
Bus Width 128-bit 128-bit
Fab Process 80 nm 55 nm
Transistors 289 million (Unknown) million
Bus PCIe x16 PCIe 2.0 x16
DirectX Version DirectX 10 DirectX 10.1
OpenGL Version OpenGL 3.0 OpenGL 3.0

Memory Bandwidth: Bandwidth is the largest amount of information (measured in megabytes per second) that can be transferred across the external memory interface in one second. It's calculated by multiplying the card's interface width by the speed of its memory. If it uses DDR memory, it must be multiplied by 2 once again. If it uses DDR5, multiply by 4 instead. The higher the card's memory bandwidth, the faster the card will be in general. It especially helps with anti-aliasing, High Dynamic Range and high resolutions.

Texel Rate: Texel rate is the maximum amount of texture map elements (texels) that are applied in one second. This number is calculated by multiplying the total number of texture units by the core clock speed of the chip. The better this number, the better the video card will be at handling 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 could possibly record to the local memory per second - measured in millions of pixels per second. The number is worked out by multiplying the number of Render Output Units by the the card's clock speed. ROPs (Raster Operations Pipelines - also sometimes called Render Output Units) are responsible for filling the screen with pixels (the image). The actual pixel rate is also dependant on lots of other factors, especially the memory bandwidth of the card - the lower the memory bandwidth is, the lower the potential to reach the max fill rate.

Display Prices

Hide Prices

GeForce 8600 GTS

Amazon.com

Check prices at:

Radeon HD 3690/3830

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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