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GeForce 8600 GTS vs Radeon HD 3470 256MB

Intro

The GeForce 8600 GTS comes with a GPU core clock speed of 675 MHz, and the 512 MB of GDDR3 RAM is set to run at 1000 MHz through a 128-bit bus. It also is made up of 32 Stream Processors, 16 TAUs, and 8 Raster Operation Units.

Compare those specifications to the Radeon HD 3470 256MB, which has GPU clock speed of 800 MHz, and 256 MB of DDR2 RAM set to run at 950 MHz through a 128-bit bus. It also is comprised of 40(8x5) Stream Processors, 4 TAUs, and 4 Raster Operation Units.

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Power Usage and Theoretical Benchmarks

Memory Bandwidth

The GeForce 8600 GTS should theoretically be a bit faster than the Radeon HD 3470 256MB in general. (explain)

GeForce 8600 GTS 32000 MB/sec
Radeon HD 3470 256MB 30400 MB/sec
Difference: 1600 (5%)

Texel Rate

The GeForce 8600 GTS will be much (approximately 238%) better at AF than the Radeon HD 3470 256MB. (explain)

GeForce 8600 GTS 10800 Mtexels/sec
Radeon HD 3470 256MB 3200 Mtexels/sec
Difference: 7600 (238%)

Pixel Rate

The GeForce 8600 GTS should be much (about 69%) more effective at AA than the Radeon HD 3470 256MB, and also should be able to handle higher screen resolutions without losing too much performance. (explain)

GeForce 8600 GTS 5400 Mpixels/sec
Radeon HD 3470 256MB 3200 Mpixels/sec
Difference: 2200 (69%)

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 3470 256MB

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 3470 256MB
Manufacturer nVidia AMD
Year April 2007 2008
Code Name G84 RV620 PRO
Memory 512 MB 256 MB
Core Speed 675 MHz 800 MHz
Memory Speed 2000 MHz 1900 MHz
Power (Max TDP) 75 watts (Unknown) watts
Bandwidth 32000 MB/sec 30400 MB/sec
Texel Rate 10800 Mtexels/sec 3200 Mtexels/sec
Pixel Rate 5400 Mpixels/sec 3200 Mpixels/sec
Unified Shaders 32 40(8x5)
Texture Mapping Units 16 4
Render Output Units 8 4
Bus Type GDDR3 DDR2
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 data (in units of MB per second) that can be transferred across the external memory interface within a second. The number is worked out 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 better the card will be in general. It especially helps with AA, HDR and high resolutions.

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

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

Display Prices

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GeForce 8600 GTS

Amazon.com

Check prices at:

Radeon HD 3470 256MB

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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