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GeForce 8500 GT vs GeForce 9400 GT 256MB

Intro

The GeForce 8500 GT makes use of a 80 nm design. nVidia has set the core speed at 450 MHz. The DDR2 RAM works at a speed of 400 MHz on this specific card. It features 16 SPUs as well as 8 TAUs and 4 Rasterization Operator Units.

Compare those specifications to the GeForce 9400 GT 256MB, which has core speeds of 550 MHz on the GPU, and 400 MHz on the 256 MB of GDDR2 RAM. It features 16 SPUs as well as 8 Texture Address Units and 4 ROPs.

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Power Usage and Theoretical Benchmarks

Power Consumption (Max TDP)

GeForce 8500 GT 45 Watts
GeForce 9400 GT 256MB 50 Watts
Difference: 5 Watts (11%)

Memory Bandwidth

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

Texel Rate

The GeForce 9400 GT 256MB should be much (about 22%) better at anisotropic filtering than the GeForce 8500 GT. (explain)

GeForce 9400 GT 256MB 4400 Mtexels/sec
GeForce 8500 GT 3600 Mtexels/sec
Difference: 800 (22%)

Pixel Rate

If running with a high screen resolution is important to you, then the GeForce 9400 GT 256MB is the winner, by a large margin. (explain)

GeForce 9400 GT 256MB 2200 Mpixels/sec
GeForce 8500 GT 1800 Mpixels/sec
Difference: 400 (22%)

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 8500 GT

Amazon.com

Check prices at:

GeForce 9400 GT 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 8500 GT GeForce 9400 GT 256MB
Manufacturer nVidia nVidia
Year April 2007 August 2008
Code Name G86 G96a
Memory 512 MB 256 MB
Core Speed 450 MHz 550 MHz
Memory Speed 800 MHz 800 MHz
Power (Max TDP) 45 watts 50 watts
Bandwidth 12800 MB/sec 12800 MB/sec
Texel Rate 3600 Mtexels/sec 4400 Mtexels/sec
Pixel Rate 1800 Mpixels/sec 2200 Mpixels/sec
Unified Shaders 16 16
Texture Mapping Units 8 8
Render Output Units 4 4
Bus Type DDR2 GDDR2
Bus Width 128-bit 128-bit
Fab Process 80 nm 65 nm
Transistors 210 million 314 million
Bus PCIe x16, PCI, PCIe x16 2.0 PCIe x16 2.0, PCI
DirectX Version DirectX 10 DirectX 10
OpenGL Version OpenGL 3.0 OpenGL 3.0

Memory Bandwidth: Memory bandwidth is the maximum amount of data (in units of MB per second) that can be moved over the external memory interface in one second. It's worked out by multiplying the bus width by its memory clock speed. If the card has DDR RAM, it must be multiplied by 2 again. If DDR5, multiply by ANOTHER 2x. The higher the memory bandwidth, the better the card will be in general. It especially helps with anti-aliasing, HDR and high resolutions.

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

Pixel Rate: Pixel rate is the maximum number of pixels that the graphics chip can possibly write to its local memory per second - measured in millions of pixels per second. The number is calculated by multiplying the amount of colour ROPs by the the core clock speed. ROPs (Raster Operations Pipelines - also called Render Output Units) are responsible for filling the screen with pixels (the image). The actual pixel output rate is also dependant on quite a few other factors, most notably the memory bandwidth - the lower the memory bandwidth is, the lower the ability to get to the maximum fill rate.

Display Prices

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GeForce 8500 GT

Amazon.com

Check prices at:

GeForce 9400 GT 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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