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GeForce GTX 280 vs GeForce GTX 550 Ti

Intro

The GeForce GTX 280 comes with a clock speed of 602 MHz and a GDDR3 memory speed of 1107 MHz. It also features a 512-bit bus, and uses a 65 nm design. It is made up of 240 SPUs, 80 TAUs, and 32 ROPs.

Compare those specs to the GeForce GTX 550 Ti, which has GPU clock speed of 900 MHz, and 1024 MB of GDDR5 RAM set to run at 1026 MHz through a 192-bit bus. It also features 192 Stream Processors, 32 TAUs, and 24 Raster Operation Units.

Display Graphs

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Power Usage and Theoretical Benchmarks

Power Consumption (Max TDP)

GeForce GTX 550 Ti 116 Watts
GeForce GTX 280 236 Watts
Difference: 120 Watts (103%)

Memory Bandwidth

Theoretically, the GeForce GTX 280 should be much faster than the GeForce GTX 550 Ti in general. (explain)

GeForce GTX 280 141696 MB/sec
GeForce GTX 550 Ti 98496 MB/sec
Difference: 43200 (44%)

Texel Rate

The GeForce GTX 280 should be much (about 67%) better at anisotropic filtering than the GeForce GTX 550 Ti. (explain)

GeForce GTX 280 48160 Mtexels/sec
GeForce GTX 550 Ti 28800 Mtexels/sec
Difference: 19360 (67%)

Pixel Rate

If using lots of anti-aliasing is important to you, then the GeForce GTX 550 Ti is the winner, but only just. (explain)

GeForce GTX 550 Ti 21600 Mpixels/sec
GeForce GTX 280 19264 Mpixels/sec
Difference: 2336 (12%)

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 GTX 280

Amazon.com

GeForce GTX 550 Ti

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 GTX 280 GeForce GTX 550 Ti
Manufacturer nVidia nVidia
Year June 17, 2008 March 2011
Code Name G200 GF116
Memory 1024 MB 1024 MB
Core Speed 602 MHz 900 MHz
Memory Speed 2214 MHz 4104 MHz
Power (Max TDP) 236 watts 116 watts
Bandwidth 141696 MB/sec 98496 MB/sec
Texel Rate 48160 Mtexels/sec 28800 Mtexels/sec
Pixel Rate 19264 Mpixels/sec 21600 Mpixels/sec
Unified Shaders 240 192
Texture Mapping Units 80 32
Render Output Units 32 24
Bus Type GDDR3 GDDR5
Bus Width 512-bit 192-bit
Fab Process 65 nm 40 nm
Transistors 1400 million 1170 million
Bus PCIe x16 2.0 PCIe 2.1 x16
DirectX Version DirectX 10 DirectX 11
OpenGL Version OpenGL 3.1 OpenGL 4.1

Memory Bandwidth: Bandwidth is the max amount of information (in units of megabytes per second) that can be transferred across the external memory interface within a second. It's worked out by multiplying the card's bus width by the speed of its memory. If the card has DDR RAM, it should be multiplied by 2 once again. If it uses DDR5, multiply by ANOTHER 2x. The better the bandwidth is, the faster 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 processed per second. This is calculated 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 handling texture filtering (anisotropic filtering - AF). It is measured in millions of texels in a second.

Pixel Rate: Pixel rate is the maximum number of pixels the graphics card can possibly record to its local memory per second - measured in millions of pixels per second. The number is calculated by multiplying the number of colour ROPs by the the core clock speed. ROPs (Raster Operations Pipelines - also called Render Output Units) are responsible for filling the screen with pixels (the image). The actual pixel rate is also dependant on lots of 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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