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GeForce 9600 GT 1GB vs GeForce 9800 GT 512MB

Intro

The GeForce 9600 GT 1GB makes use of a 65/55 nm design. nVidia has clocked the core frequency at 650 MHz. The GDDR3 memory runs at a speed of 900 MHz on this specific model. It features 64 SPUs along with 32 TAUs and 16 ROPs.

Compare those specifications to the GeForce 9800 GT 512MB, which uses a 65/55 nm design. nVidia has clocked the core speed at 600 MHz. The GDDR3 memory works at a speed of 900 MHz on this card. It features 112 SPUs as well as 56 TAUs and 16 ROPs.

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Power Usage and Theoretical Benchmarks

Power Consumption (Max TDP)

GeForce 9600 GT 1GB 95 Watts
GeForce 9800 GT 512MB 105 Watts
Difference: 10 Watts (11%)

Memory Bandwidth

Both cards have exactly the same bandwidth, so theoretically they should perform the same. (explain)

Texel Rate

The GeForce 9800 GT 512MB will be much (about 62%) better at texture filtering than the GeForce 9600 GT 1GB. (explain)

GeForce 9800 GT 512MB 33600 Mtexels/sec
GeForce 9600 GT 1GB 20800 Mtexels/sec
Difference: 12800 (62%)

Pixel Rate

If using high levels of AA is important to you, then the GeForce 9600 GT 1GB is a better choice, but only just. (explain)

GeForce 9600 GT 1GB 10400 Mpixels/sec
GeForce 9800 GT 512MB 9600 Mpixels/sec
Difference: 800 (8%)

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 9600 GT 1GB

Amazon.com

Check prices at:

GeForce 9800 GT 512MB

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 9600 GT 1GB GeForce 9800 GT 512MB
Manufacturer nVidia nVidia
Year Feb 2008 July 2008
Code Name G94a/b G92a/b
Memory 1024 MB 512 MB
Core Speed 650 MHz 600 MHz
Memory Speed 1800 MHz 1800 MHz
Power (Max TDP) 95 watts 105 watts
Bandwidth 57600 MB/sec 57600 MB/sec
Texel Rate 20800 Mtexels/sec 33600 Mtexels/sec
Pixel Rate 10400 Mpixels/sec 9600 Mpixels/sec
Unified Shaders 64 112
Texture Mapping Units 32 56
Render Output Units 16 16
Bus Type GDDR3 GDDR3
Bus Width 256-bit 256-bit
Fab Process 65/55 nm 65/55 nm
Transistors 505 million 754 million
Bus PCIe x16 2.0 PCIe x16 2.0
DirectX Version DirectX 10 DirectX 10
OpenGL Version OpenGL 3.0 OpenGL 3.0

Memory Bandwidth: Bandwidth is the max amount of data (counted in MB per second) that can be transferred across the external memory interface within a second. It's calculated by multiplying the card's bus width by its memory clock speed. In the case of DDR RAM, it should be multiplied by 2 again. If DDR5, multiply by ANOTHER 2x. The better the 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 can be applied per second. This number is worked out by multiplying the total amount of texture units by the core clock speed of the chip. The better the texel rate, the better the graphics card will be at handling texture filtering (anisotropic filtering - AF). It is measured in millions of texels applied in a second.

Pixel Rate: Pixel rate is the maximum amount of pixels that the graphics chip could possibly write to the local memory in one second - measured in millions of pixels per second. The figure is calculated by multiplying the number of ROPs by the the card's clock speed. ROPs (Raster Operations Pipelines - aka Render Output Units) are responsible for filling the screen with pixels (the image). The actual pixel output rate is also dependant on many 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 9600 GT 1GB

Amazon.com

Check prices at:

GeForce 9800 GT 512MB

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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