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GeForce 8500 GT vs GeForce 8600 GT 512MB DDR2

Intro

The GeForce 8500 GT comes with a clock frequency of 450 MHz and a DDR2 memory speed of 400 MHz. It also makes use of a 128-bit bus, and makes use of a 80 nm design. It features 16 SPUs, 8 Texture Address Units, and 4 Raster Operation Units.

Compare those specifications to the GeForce 8600 GT 512MB DDR2, which has a clock speed of 540 MHz and a DDR2 memory speed of 400 MHz. It also makes use of a 128-bit bus, and makes use of a 80 nm design. It features 32 SPUs, 16 TAUs, and 8 ROPs.

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Power Usage and Theoretical Benchmarks

Power Consumption (Max TDP)

GeForce 8500 GT 45 Watts
GeForce 8600 GT 512MB DDR2 47 Watts
Difference: 2 Watts (4%)

Memory Bandwidth

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

Texel Rate

The GeForce 8600 GT 512MB DDR2 should be quite a bit (about 140%) better at anisotropic filtering than the GeForce 8500 GT. (explain)

GeForce 8600 GT 512MB DDR2 8640 Mtexels/sec
GeForce 8500 GT 3600 Mtexels/sec
Difference: 5040 (140%)

Pixel Rate

The GeForce 8600 GT 512MB DDR2 will be a lot (approximately 140%) better at anti-aliasing than the GeForce 8500 GT, and also will be capable of handling higher resolutions without slowing down too much. (explain)

GeForce 8600 GT 512MB 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 512MB 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 512MB DDR2
Manufacturer nVidia nVidia
Year April 2007 April 2007
Code Name G86 G84
Memory 512 MB 512 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: Bandwidth is the max amount of information (in units of megabytes per second) that can be moved past the external memory interface in one second. It is worked out by multiplying the card's interface width by the speed of its memory. If it uses DDR type memory, it must 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 AA, High Dynamic Range and high resolutions.

Texel Rate: Texel rate is the maximum number of texture map elements (texels) that are applied in one second. This figure is calculated by multiplying the total amount of texture units by the core clock speed of the chip. The better the texel rate, the better the video 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 maximum amount of pixels that the graphics card can possibly record to its local memory in one second - measured in millions of pixels per second. Pixel rate is worked out by multiplying the amount of colour ROPs by the the core clock speed. ROPs (Raster Operations Pipelines - sometimes also referred to as Render Output Units) are responsible for outputting the pixels (image) to the screen. The actual pixel output rate also depends on many other factors, especially the memory bandwidth of the card - the lower the memory bandwidth is, the lower the ability to reach the maximum fill rate.

Display Prices

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GeForce 8500 GT

Amazon.com

Check prices at:

GeForce 8600 GT 512MB 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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