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GeForce 8800 Ultra vs GeForce 9800 GX2

Intro

The GeForce 8800 Ultra uses a 90 nm design. nVidia has set the core speed at 612 MHz. The GDDR3 memory runs at a frequency of 1080 MHz on this card. It features 128 SPUs along with 64 Texture Address Units and 24 Rasterization Operator Units.

Compare those specifications to the GeForce 9800 GX2, which uses a 65 nm design. nVidia has set the core frequency at 600 MHz. The GDDR3 RAM is set to run at a speed of 1000 MHz on this specific card. It features 128 SPUs along with 64 TAUs and 16 ROPs.

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Power Usage and Theoretical Benchmarks

Power Consumption (Max TDP)

GeForce 8800 Ultra 171 Watts
GeForce 9800 GX2 197 Watts
Difference: 26 Watts (15%)

Memory Bandwidth

Performance-wise, the GeForce 9800 GX2 should in theory be much better than the GeForce 8800 Ultra in general. (explain)

GeForce 9800 GX2 128000 MB/sec
GeForce 8800 Ultra 103680 MB/sec
Difference: 24320 (23%)

Texel Rate

The GeForce 9800 GX2 should be a lot (approximately 96%) more effective at AF than the GeForce 8800 Ultra. (explain)

GeForce 9800 GX2 76800 Mtexels/sec
GeForce 8800 Ultra 39168 Mtexels/sec
Difference: 37632 (96%)

Pixel Rate

If running with a high resolution is important to you, then the GeForce 9800 GX2 is the winner, by a large margin. (explain)

GeForce 9800 GX2 19200 Mpixels/sec
GeForce 8800 Ultra 14688 Mpixels/sec
Difference: 4512 (31%)

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.

One or more cards in this comparison are multi-core. This means that their bandwidth, texel and pixel rates are theoretically doubled - this does not mean the card will actually perform twice as fast, but only that it should in theory be able to. Actual game benchmarks will give a more accurate idea of what it's capable of.

Price Comparison

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GeForce 8800 Ultra

Amazon.com

Check prices at:

GeForce 9800 GX2

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 8800 Ultra GeForce 9800 GX2
Manufacturer nVidia nVidia
Year May 2007 Mar 2008
Code Name G80 G92
Memory 768 MB 512 MB (x2)
Core Speed 612 MHz 600 MHz (x2)
Memory Speed 2160 MHz 2000 MHz (x2)
Power (Max TDP) 171 watts 197 watts
Bandwidth 103680 MB/sec 128000 MB/sec
Texel Rate 39168 Mtexels/sec 76800 Mtexels/sec
Pixel Rate 14688 Mpixels/sec 19200 Mpixels/sec
Unified Shaders 128 128 (x2)
Texture Mapping Units 64 64 (x2)
Render Output Units 24 16 (x2)
Bus Type GDDR3 GDDR3
Bus Width 384-bit 256-bit (x2)
Fab Process 90 nm 65 nm
Transistors 681 million 754 million
Bus PCIe x16 PCIe x16 2.0
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 transported over the external memory interface in one second. The number is worked out by multiplying the card's interface width by its memory clock speed. In the case of DDR RAM, it must be multiplied by 2 again. If it uses DDR5, multiply by 4 instead. The higher the bandwidth is, the better the card will be in general. It especially helps with AA, HDR and high resolutions.

Texel Rate: Texel rate is the maximum number of texture map elements (texels) that can be applied in one second. This is calculated by multiplying the total amount of texture units by the core 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 processed in one second.

Pixel Rate: Pixel rate is the most pixels the graphics card can possibly write to its local memory per second - measured in millions of pixels per second. Pixel rate is worked out by multiplying the amount of ROPs by the the core speed of the card. 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 lots of other factors, especially the memory bandwidth - the lower the bandwidth is, the lower the potential to get to the max fill rate.

Display Prices

Hide Prices

GeForce 8800 Ultra

Amazon.com

Check prices at:

GeForce 9800 GX2

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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