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GeForce 8600 GT 512MB DDR2 vs GeForce 9800 GT 1GB

Intro

The GeForce 8600 GT 512MB DDR2 has a clock speed of 540 MHz and a DDR2 memory frequency of 400 MHz. It also makes use of a 128-bit memory bus, and makes use of a 80 nm design. It is made up of 32 SPUs, 16 Texture Address Units, and 8 ROPs.

Compare those specifications to the GeForce 9800 GT 1GB, which comes with GPU core speed of 600 MHz, and 1024 MB of GDDR3 RAM running at 900 MHz through a 256-bit bus. It also is made up of 112 SPUs, 56 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
GeForce 9800 GT 1GB 105 Watts
Difference: 58 Watts (123%)

Memory Bandwidth

In theory, the GeForce 9800 GT 1GB should be 350% quicker than the GeForce 8600 GT 512MB DDR2 in general, because of its higher bandwidth. (explain)

GeForce 9800 GT 1GB 57600 MB/sec
GeForce 8600 GT 512MB DDR2 12800 MB/sec
Difference: 44800 (350%)

Texel Rate

The GeForce 9800 GT 1GB should be a lot (about 289%) more effective at AF than the GeForce 8600 GT 512MB DDR2. (explain)

GeForce 9800 GT 1GB 33600 Mtexels/sec
GeForce 8600 GT 512MB DDR2 8640 Mtexels/sec
Difference: 24960 (289%)

Pixel Rate

The GeForce 9800 GT 1GB will be quite a bit (about 122%) better at AA than the GeForce 8600 GT 512MB DDR2, and capable of handling higher resolutions without losing too much performance. (explain)

GeForce 9800 GT 1GB 9600 Mpixels/sec
GeForce 8600 GT 512MB DDR2 4320 Mpixels/sec
Difference: 5280 (122%)

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:

GeForce 9800 GT 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 GeForce 9800 GT 1GB
Manufacturer nVidia nVidia
Year April 2007 July 2008
Code Name G84 G92a/b
Memory 512 MB 1024 MB
Core Speed 540 MHz 600 MHz
Memory Speed 800 MHz 1800 MHz
Power (Max TDP) 47 watts 105 watts
Bandwidth 12800 MB/sec 57600 MB/sec
Texel Rate 8640 Mtexels/sec 33600 Mtexels/sec
Pixel Rate 4320 Mpixels/sec 9600 Mpixels/sec
Unified Shaders 32 112
Texture Mapping Units 16 56
Render Output Units 8 16
Bus Type DDR2 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 3.0

Memory Bandwidth: Memory bandwidth is the max amount of data (measured in MB per second) that can be transferred past the external memory interface in a second. It's worked out by multiplying the interface width by its memory clock speed. In the case of DDR type RAM, it should be multiplied by 2 again. If it uses DDR5, multiply by 4 instead. The better the bandwidth is, 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 number of texture map elements (texels) that are processed per second. This figure is worked out by multiplying the total amount of texture units by the core speed of the chip. The better this number, the better the 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 number of pixels the graphics card can possibly write to its local memory in a second - measured in millions of pixels per second. The number is worked out by multiplying the number of Raster Operations Pipelines by the clock speed of the card. ROPs (Raster Operations Pipelines - also sometimes called Render Output Units) are responsible for filling the screen with pixels (the image). The actual pixel output rate is also dependant on lots of other factors, most notably the memory bandwidth - the lower the bandwidth is, the lower the potential to reach the maximum fill rate.

Display Prices

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GeForce 8600 GT 512MB DDR2

Amazon.com

Check prices at:

GeForce 9800 GT 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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