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GeForce 8600 GT 512MB DDR2 vs GeForce GT 230

Intro

The GeForce 8600 GT 512MB DDR2 comes with a core clock frequency of 540 MHz and a DDR2 memory speed of 400 MHz. It also uses a 128-bit memory bus, and uses a 80 nm design. It features 32 SPUs, 16 TAUs, and 8 Raster Operation Units.

Compare all of that to the GeForce GT 230, which comes with GPU core speed of 550 MHz, and 1536 MB of DDR3 RAM set to run at 800 MHz through a 192-bit bus. It also is made up of 32 Stream Processors, 16 TAUs, and 8 Raster Operation Units.

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Power Usage and Theoretical Benchmarks

Power Consumption (Max TDP)

GeForce 8600 GT 512MB DDR2 47 Watts
GeForce GT 230 65 Watts
Difference: 18 Watts (38%)

Memory Bandwidth

Theoretically speaking, the GeForce GT 230 is 200% faster than the GeForce 8600 GT 512MB DDR2 overall, due to its greater bandwidth. (explain)

GeForce GT 230 38400 MB/sec
GeForce 8600 GT 512MB DDR2 12800 MB/sec
Difference: 25600 (200%)

Texel Rate

The GeForce GT 230 is a little bit (approximately 2%) better at anisotropic filtering than the GeForce 8600 GT 512MB DDR2. (explain)

GeForce GT 230 8800 Mtexels/sec
GeForce 8600 GT 512MB DDR2 8640 Mtexels/sec
Difference: 160 (2%)

Pixel Rate

If using lots of anti-aliasing is important to you, then the GeForce GT 230 is the winner, not by a very large margin though. (explain)

GeForce GT 230 4400 Mpixels/sec
GeForce 8600 GT 512MB DDR2 4320 Mpixels/sec
Difference: 80 (2%)

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 DDR2

Amazon.com

Check prices at:

GeForce GT 230

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 DDR2 GeForce GT 230
Manufacturer nVidia nVidia
Year April 2007 October 2009
Code Name G84 GT218
Memory 512 MB 1536 MB
Core Speed 540 MHz 550 MHz
Memory Speed 800 MHz 1600 MHz
Power (Max TDP) 47 watts 65 watts
Bandwidth 12800 MB/sec 38400 MB/sec
Texel Rate 8640 Mtexels/sec 8800 Mtexels/sec
Pixel Rate 4320 Mpixels/sec 4400 Mpixels/sec
Unified Shaders 32 32
Texture Mapping Units 16 16
Render Output Units 8 8
Bus Type DDR2 DDR3
Bus Width 128-bit 192-bit
Fab Process 80 nm 40 nm
Transistors 289 million 260 million
Bus PCIe x16 PCIe 2.0
DirectX Version DirectX 10 DirectX 10.1
OpenGL Version OpenGL 3.0 OpenGL 3.2

Memory Bandwidth: Bandwidth is the maximum amount of data (counted in megabytes per second) that can be transferred across 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 ANOTHER 2x. The higher the card's memory bandwidth, the faster 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 texture map elements (texels) that can be applied per second. This number is worked out by multiplying the total texture units of the card by the core speed of the chip. The better the texel rate, the better the graphics card will be at handling texture filtering (anisotropic filtering - AF). It is measured in millions of texels applied in one second.

Pixel Rate: Pixel rate is the maximum amount of pixels that the graphics chip can possibly record to its local memory in one second - measured in millions of pixels per second. The figure is calculated by multiplying the amount of colour ROPs by the the card's clock speed. ROPs (Raster Operations Pipelines - aka Render Output Units) are responsible for filling the screen with pixels (the image). The actual pixel rate also depends on quite a few other factors, most notably the memory bandwidth - the lower the memory bandwidth is, the lower the ability to get to the max fill rate.

Display Prices

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GeForce 8600 GT 512MB DDR2

Amazon.com

Check prices at:

GeForce GT 230

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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