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GeForce 8600 GT 256MB DDR2 vs GeForce 9500 GT DDR2

Intro

The GeForce 8600 GT 256MB DDR2 has a GPU clock speed of 540 MHz, and the 256 MB of DDR2 RAM runs at 400 MHz through a 128-bit bus. It also is made up of 32 SPUs, 16 Texture Address Units, and 8 Raster Operation Units.

Compare that to the GeForce 9500 GT DDR2, which has a GPU core clock speed of 550 MHz, and 256 MB of DDR2 RAM running at 500 MHz through a 128-bit bus. It also is made up of 32 SPUs, 16 TAUs, and 8 Raster Operation Units.

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Power Usage and Theoretical Benchmarks

Power Consumption (Max TDP)

GeForce 8600 GT 256MB DDR2 47 Watts
GeForce 9500 GT DDR2 50 Watts
Difference: 3 Watts (6%)

Memory Bandwidth

The GeForce 9500 GT DDR2 should theoretically be quite a bit faster than the GeForce 8600 GT 256MB DDR2 in general. (explain)

GeForce 9500 GT DDR2 16000 MB/sec
GeForce 8600 GT 256MB DDR2 12800 MB/sec
Difference: 3200 (25%)

Texel Rate

The GeForce 9500 GT DDR2 should be just a bit (about 2%) more effective at AF than the GeForce 8600 GT 256MB DDR2. (explain)

GeForce 9500 GT DDR2 8800 Mtexels/sec
GeForce 8600 GT 256MB DDR2 8640 Mtexels/sec
Difference: 160 (2%)

Pixel Rate

If running with a high screen resolution is important to you, then the GeForce 9500 GT DDR2 is superior to the GeForce 8600 GT 256MB DDR2, though only just barely. (explain)

GeForce 9500 GT DDR2 4400 Mpixels/sec
GeForce 8600 GT 256MB DDR2 4320 Mpixels/sec
Difference: 80 (2%)

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 256MB DDR2

Amazon.com

Check prices at:

GeForce 9500 GT DDR2

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 256MB DDR2 GeForce 9500 GT DDR2
Manufacturer nVidia nVidia
Year April 2007 July 2008
Code Name G84 G96a
Memory 256 MB 256 MB
Core Speed 540 MHz 550 MHz
Memory Speed 800 MHz 1000 MHz
Power (Max TDP) 47 watts 50 watts
Bandwidth 12800 MB/sec 16000 MB/sec
Texel Rate 8640 Mtexels/sec 8800 Mtexels/sec
Pixel Rate 4320 Mpixels/sec 4400 Mpixels/sec
Unified Shaders 32 32
Texture Mapping Units 16 16
Render Output Units 8 8
Bus Type DDR2 DDR2
Bus Width 128-bit 128-bit
Fab Process 80 nm 65 nm
Transistors 289 million 314 million
Bus PCIe x16 PCIe x16 2.0, PCI
DirectX Version DirectX 10 DirectX 10
OpenGL Version OpenGL 3.0 OpenGL 3.0

Memory Bandwidth: Bandwidth is the maximum amount of data (in units of megabytes per second) that can be transferred past the external memory interface in one second. It's worked out by multiplying the card's interface width by its memory speed. In the case of DDR RAM, it should be multiplied by 2 again. If DDR5, multiply by 4 instead. The higher the bandwidth is, the better the card will be in general. It especially helps with anti-aliasing, HDR and higher screen resolutions.

Texel Rate: Texel rate is the maximum amount of texture map elements (texels) that are applied per second. This is calculated by multiplying the total texture units by the core clock speed of the chip. The higher this number, the better the card will be at handling texture filtering (anisotropic filtering - AF). It is measured in millions of texels in one second.

Pixel Rate: Pixel rate is the most pixels the graphics card could possibly record to the local memory in one second - measured in millions of pixels per second. The number is calculated by multiplying the number of colour ROPs 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 also depends on many other factors, especially the memory bandwidth - the lower the bandwidth is, the lower the ability to reach the max fill rate.

Display Prices

Hide Prices

GeForce 8600 GT 256MB DDR2

Amazon.com

Check prices at:

GeForce 9500 GT DDR2

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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