Compare any two graphics cards:
GeForce 9600 GT 512MB vs GeForce GTX 550 Ti
IntroThe GeForce 9600 GT 512MB has a GPU core speed of 650 MHz, and the 512 MB of GDDR3 memory runs at 900 MHz through a 256-bit bus. It also is made up of 64 Stream Processors, 32 Texture Address Units, and 16 ROPs.
Compare those specifications to the GeForce GTX 550 Ti, which comes with core clock speeds of 900 MHz on the GPU, and 1026 MHz on the 1024 MB of GDDR5 memory. It features 192 SPUs along with 32 Texture Address Units and 24 Rasterization Operator Units.
(No game benchmarks for this combination yet.)
Power Usage and Theoretical Benchmarks
Power Consumption (Max TDP)
In theory, the GeForce GTX 550 Ti should be 71% faster than the GeForce 9600 GT 512MB overall, because of its higher data rate. (explain)
Texel RateThe GeForce GTX 550 Ti should be quite a bit (more or less 38%) better at AF than the GeForce 9600 GT 512MB. (explain)
Pixel RateThe GeForce GTX 550 Ti should be a lot (about 108%) more effective at anti-aliasing than the GeForce 9600 GT 512MB, and will be able to handle higher resolutions better. (explain)
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.
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.
Memory Bandwidth: Memory bandwidth is the largest amount of data (counted in MB per second) that can be moved over the external memory interface in one second. The number is calculated by multiplying the card's interface width by the speed of its memory. In the case of DDR RAM, the result 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 anti-aliasing, High Dynamic Range and high resolutions.
Texel Rate: Texel rate is the maximum amount of texture map elements (texels) that are applied per second. This number is worked out by multiplying the total amount of texture units by the core speed of the chip. The better this number, the better the graphics card will be at texture filtering (anisotropic filtering - AF). It is measured in millions of texels in one second.
Pixel Rate: Pixel rate is the maximum amount of pixels that the graphics card can possibly write to the local memory in one second - measured in millions of pixels per second. Pixel rate is calculated by multiplying the number of 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 output rate also depends on many other factors, especially the memory bandwidth of the card - the lower the memory bandwidth is, the lower the ability to reach the max fill rate.