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GeForce 8400 GS 512MB vs GeForce 9600 GT 1GB

Intro

The GeForce 8400 GS 512MB makes use of a 80 nm design. nVidia has clocked the core speed at 650 MHz. The DDR2 memory is set to run at a speed of 400 MHz on this model. It features 16 SPUs along with 8 Texture Address Units and 4 Rasterization Operator Units.

Compare those specifications to the GeForce 9600 GT 1GB, which makes use of a 65/55 nm design. nVidia has set the core frequency at 650 MHz. The GDDR3 memory is set to run at a speed of 900 MHz on this particular model. It features 64 SPUs as well as 32 TAUs and 16 Rasterization Operator Units.

Display Graphs

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Power Usage and Theoretical Benchmarks

Power Consumption (Max TDP)

GeForce 8400 GS 512MB 40 Watts
GeForce 9600 GT 1GB 95 Watts
Difference: 55 Watts (138%)

Memory Bandwidth

Performance-wise, the GeForce 9600 GT 1GB should theoretically be much better than the GeForce 8400 GS 512MB in general. (explain)

GeForce 9600 GT 1GB 57600 MB/sec
GeForce 8400 GS 512MB 6400 MB/sec
Difference: 51200 (800%)

Texel Rate

The GeForce 9600 GT 1GB will be a lot (more or less 300%) better at AF than the GeForce 8400 GS 512MB. (explain)

GeForce 9600 GT 1GB 20800 Mtexels/sec
GeForce 8400 GS 512MB 5200 Mtexels/sec
Difference: 15600 (300%)

Pixel Rate

The GeForce 9600 GT 1GB will be much (about 300%) better at anti-aliasing than the GeForce 8400 GS 512MB, and will be capable of handling higher screen resolutions more effectively. (explain)

GeForce 9600 GT 1GB 10400 Mpixels/sec
GeForce 8400 GS 512MB 2600 Mpixels/sec
Difference: 7800 (300%)

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 8400 GS 512MB

Amazon.com

GeForce 9600 GT 1GB

Amazon.com

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 8400 GS 512MB GeForce 9600 GT 1GB
Manufacturer nVidia nVidia
Year June 2007 Feb 2008
Code Name G86 G94a/b
Memory 512 MB 1024 MB
Core Speed 650 MHz 650 MHz
Memory Speed 800 MHz 1800 MHz
Power (Max TDP) 40 watts 95 watts
Bandwidth 6400 MB/sec 57600 MB/sec
Texel Rate 5200 Mtexels/sec 20800 Mtexels/sec
Pixel Rate 2600 Mpixels/sec 10400 Mpixels/sec
Unified Shaders 16 64
Texture Mapping Units 8 32
Render Output Units 4 16
Bus Type DDR2 GDDR3
Bus Width 64-bit 256-bit
Fab Process 80 nm 65/55 nm
Transistors 210 million 505 million
Bus PCIe x16, PCI PCIe x16 2.0
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 MB per second) that can be transferred across the external memory interface in a second. It's calculated by multiplying the bus width by its memory clock speed. If it uses DDR RAM, it must be multiplied by 2 once again. If DDR5, multiply by 4 instead. The better the memory bandwidth, the better the card will be in general. It especially helps with AA, High Dynamic Range and higher screen resolutions.

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

Pixel Rate: Pixel rate is the most pixels the graphics card could possibly record to the local memory per second - measured in millions of pixels per second. Pixel rate is worked out by multiplying the number of ROPs by the the card's 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 rate is also dependant on quite a few other factors, most notably the memory bandwidth of the card - the lower the bandwidth is, the lower the potential to get to the max fill rate.

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