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GeForce 8500 GT vs GeForce 8600 GT 1GB DDR2

Intro

The GeForce 8500 GT makes use of a 80 nm design. nVidia has clocked the core speed at 450 MHz. The DDR2 RAM is set to run at a frequency of 400 MHz on this specific model. It features 16 SPUs along with 8 Texture Address Units and 4 Rasterization Operator Units.

Compare all that to the GeForce 8600 GT 1GB DDR2, which comes with a core clock speed of 540 MHz and a DDR2 memory speed of 400 MHz. It also makes use of a 128-bit bus, and uses a 80 nm design. It is comprised of 32 SPUs, 16 TAUs, and 8 Raster Operation Units.

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Power Usage and Theoretical Benchmarks

Power Consumption (Max TDP)

GeForce 8500 GT 45 Watts
GeForce 8600 GT 1GB DDR2 47 Watts
Difference: 2 Watts (4%)

Memory Bandwidth

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

Texel Rate

The GeForce 8600 GT 1GB DDR2 will be quite a bit (about 140%) faster with regards to AF than the GeForce 8500 GT. (explain)

GeForce 8600 GT 1GB DDR2 8640 Mtexels/sec
GeForce 8500 GT 3600 Mtexels/sec
Difference: 5040 (140%)

Pixel Rate

If using a high resolution is important to you, then the GeForce 8600 GT 1GB DDR2 is a better choice, by far. (explain)

GeForce 8600 GT 1GB DDR2 4320 Mpixels/sec
GeForce 8500 GT 1800 Mpixels/sec
Difference: 2520 (140%)

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 8600 GT 1GB 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 8500 GT GeForce 8600 GT 1GB DDR2
Manufacturer nVidia nVidia
Year April 2007 April 2007
Code Name G86 G84
Memory 512 MB 1024 MB
Core Speed 450 MHz 540 MHz
Memory Speed 800 MHz 800 MHz
Power (Max TDP) 45 watts 47 watts
Bandwidth 12800 MB/sec 12800 MB/sec
Texel Rate 3600 Mtexels/sec 8640 Mtexels/sec
Pixel Rate 1800 Mpixels/sec 4320 Mpixels/sec
Unified Shaders 16 32
Texture Mapping Units 8 16
Render Output Units 4 8
Bus Type DDR2 DDR2
Bus Width 128-bit 128-bit
Fab Process 80 nm 80 nm
Transistors 210 million 289 million
Bus PCIe x16, PCI, PCIe x16 2.0 PCIe x16
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 megabytes per second) that can be transported over the external memory interface in a second. It's calculated by multiplying the interface width by its memory clock speed. In the case of DDR type RAM, the result should be multiplied by 2 once again. If it uses DDR5, multiply by ANOTHER 2x. The better the memory bandwidth, the better 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 texture map elements (texels) that are processed in one second. This figure is calculated by multiplying the total texture units by the core clock speed of the chip. The higher the texel rate, the better the card will be at handling texture filtering (anisotropic filtering - AF). It is measured in millions of texels processed in one second.

Pixel Rate: Pixel rate is the maximum number of pixels that the graphics card can possibly write to its local memory in one second - measured in millions of pixels per second. Pixel rate is calculated by multiplying the amount of Render Output Units by the the core clock speed. ROPs (Raster Operations Pipelines - also sometimes called Render Output Units) are responsible for drawing the pixels (image) on the screen. The actual pixel output rate also depends on quite a few other factors, especially the memory bandwidth of the card - the lower the bandwidth is, the lower the potential to reach the maximum fill rate.

Display Prices

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GeForce 8500 GT

Amazon.com

Check prices at:

GeForce 8600 GT 1GB 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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