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GeForce 8600 GT 512MB GDDR3 vs Radeon HD 6870

Intro

The GeForce 8600 GT 512MB GDDR3 uses a 80 nm design. nVidia has set the core frequency at 540 MHz. The GDDR3 RAM is set to run at a frequency of 700 MHz on this particular card. It features 32 SPUs along with 16 TAUs and 8 ROPs.

Compare all that to the Radeon HD 6870, which comes with a core clock speed of 900 MHz and a GDDR5 memory frequency of 1050 MHz. It also uses a 256-bit memory bus, and makes use of a 40 nm design. It features 1120 SPUs, 56 TAUs, and 32 Raster Operation Units.

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Power Usage and Theoretical Benchmarks

Power Consumption (Max TDP)

GeForce 8600 GT 512MB GDDR3 47 Watts
Radeon HD 6870 151 Watts
Difference: 104 Watts (221%)

Memory Bandwidth

As far as performance goes, the Radeon HD 6870 should in theory be much better than the GeForce 8600 GT 512MB GDDR3 in general. (explain)

Radeon HD 6870 134400 MB/sec
GeForce 8600 GT 512MB GDDR3 22400 MB/sec
Difference: 112000 (500%)

Texel Rate

The Radeon HD 6870 is a lot (about 483%) better at AF than the GeForce 8600 GT 512MB GDDR3. (explain)

Radeon HD 6870 50400 Mtexels/sec
GeForce 8600 GT 512MB GDDR3 8640 Mtexels/sec
Difference: 41760 (483%)

Pixel Rate

The Radeon HD 6870 will be a lot (more or less 567%) faster with regards to full screen anti-aliasing than the GeForce 8600 GT 512MB GDDR3, and also able to handle higher resolutions better. (explain)

Radeon HD 6870 28800 Mpixels/sec
GeForce 8600 GT 512MB GDDR3 4320 Mpixels/sec
Difference: 24480 (567%)

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 8600 GT 512MB GDDR3

Amazon.com

Check prices at:

Radeon HD 6870

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 8600 GT 512MB GDDR3 Radeon HD 6870
Manufacturer nVidia AMD
Year April 2007 October 2010
Code Name G84 Barts XT
Memory 512 MB 1024 MB
Core Speed 540 MHz 900 MHz
Memory Speed 1400 MHz 4200 MHz
Power (Max TDP) 47 watts 151 watts
Bandwidth 22400 MB/sec 134400 MB/sec
Texel Rate 8640 Mtexels/sec 50400 Mtexels/sec
Pixel Rate 4320 Mpixels/sec 28800 Mpixels/sec
Unified Shaders 32 1120
Texture Mapping Units 16 56
Render Output Units 8 32
Bus Type GDDR3 GDDR5
Bus Width 128-bit 256-bit
Fab Process 80 nm 40 nm
Transistors 289 million 1700 million
Bus PCIe x16 PCIe x16
DirectX Version DirectX 10 DirectX 11
OpenGL Version OpenGL 3.0 OpenGL 4.1

Memory Bandwidth: Memory bandwidth is the maximum amount of information (measured in MB per second) that can be moved over the external memory interface within a second. The number is calculated by multiplying the interface width by its memory clock speed. If the card has DDR type memory, the result should be multiplied by 2 again. If 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 higher screen resolutions.

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

Pixel Rate: Pixel rate is the maximum amount of pixels the graphics card can possibly write to the local memory per second - measured in millions of pixels per second. The figure is worked out by multiplying the number of colour 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 rate is also dependant on many other factors, especially the memory bandwidth - the lower the memory bandwidth is, the lower the ability to get to the max fill rate.

Display Prices

Hide Prices

GeForce 8600 GT 512MB GDDR3

Amazon.com

Check prices at:

Radeon HD 6870

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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