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GeForce GTX 280 vs GeForce GTX 550 Ti

Intro

The GeForce GTX 280 features a clock frequency of 602 MHz and a GDDR3 memory frequency of 1107 MHz. It also features a 512-bit memory bus, and makes use of a 65 nm design. It is comprised of 240 SPUs, 80 TAUs, and 32 Raster Operation Units.

Compare those specs to the GeForce GTX 550 Ti, which makes use of a 40 nm design. nVidia has set the core frequency at 900 MHz. The GDDR5 memory runs at a speed of 1026 MHz on this model. It features 192 SPUs as well as 32 TAUs and 24 ROPs.

(No game benchmarks for this combination yet.)

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

As far as performance goes, the GeForce GTX 280 should theoretically be a lot better than the GeForce GTX 550 Ti overall. (explain)

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

Texel Rate

The GeForce GTX 280 will be a lot (approximately 67%) more effective at texture 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

The GeForce GTX 550 Ti will be just a bit (about 12%) more effective at anti-aliasing than the GeForce GTX 280, and should be capable of handling higher screen resolutions while still performing well. (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

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

Model GeForce GTX 280 GeForce GTX 550 Ti
Manufacturer nVidia nVidia
Year June 17, 2008 March 2011
Code Name G200 GF116
Fab Process 65 nm 40 nm
Bus PCIe x16 2.0 PCIe 2.1 x16
Memory 1024 MB 1024 MB
Core Speed 602 MHz 900 MHz
Shader Speed 1296 MHz 1800 MHz
Memory Speed 1107 MHz (2214 MHz effective) 1026 MHz (4104 MHz effective)
Unified Shaders 240 192
Texture Mapping Units 80 32
Render Output Units 32 24
Bus Type GDDR3 GDDR5
Bus Width 512-bit 192-bit
DirectX Version DirectX 10 DirectX 11
OpenGL Version OpenGL 3.1 OpenGL 4.1
Power (Max TDP) 236 watts 116 watts
Shader Model 4.0 5.0
Bandwidth 141696 MB/sec 98496 MB/sec
Texel Rate 48160 Mtexels/sec 28800 Mtexels/sec
Pixel Rate 19264 Mpixels/sec 21600 Mpixels/sec

Memory Bandwidth: Memory bandwidth is the maximum amount of information (measured in MB per second) that can be moved across the external memory interface in a second. It's calculated by multiplying the card's interface width by the speed of its memory. In the case of DDR memory, it should be multiplied by 2 again. If DDR5, multiply by 4 instead. The better the bandwidth is, 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 amount of texture map elements (texels) that are processed per 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 card will be at texture filtering (anisotropic filtering - AF). It is measured in millions of texels processed in one second.

Pixel Rate: Pixel rate is the maximum number of pixels that the graphics card can possibly write to its local memory in one second - measured in millions of pixels per second. The number is worked out by multiplying the amount of Render Output Units by the the core clock speed. ROPs (Raster Operations Pipelines - aka Render Output Units) are responsible for filling the screen with pixels (the image). The actual pixel fill rate is also dependant on lots of other factors, most notably the memory bandwidth of the card - the lower the memory bandwidth is, the lower the potential to get to the maximum fill rate.

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