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GeForce 9600 GSO 512MB vs GeForce 9800 GX2

Intro

The GeForce 9600 GSO 512MB comes with a GPU core clock speed of 650 MHz, and the 512 MB of GDDR3 memory runs at 900 MHz through a 256-bit bus. It also features 96 Stream Processors, 48 Texture Address Units, and 16 Raster Operation Units.

Compare all that to the GeForce 9800 GX2, which features GPU core speed of 600 MHz, and 512 MB of GDDR3 RAM running at 1000 MHz through a 256-bit bus. It also features 128 Stream Processors, 64 TAUs, and 16 ROPs.

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Power Usage and Theoretical Benchmarks

Power Consumption (Max TDP)

GeForce 9600 GSO 512MB 90 Watts
GeForce 9800 GX2 197 Watts
Difference: 107 Watts (119%)

Memory Bandwidth

In theory, the GeForce 9800 GX2 will be 122% faster than the GeForce 9600 GSO 512MB in general, because of its higher bandwidth. (explain)

GeForce 9800 GX2 128000 MB/sec
GeForce 9600 GSO 512MB 57600 MB/sec
Difference: 70400 (122%)

Texel Rate

The GeForce 9800 GX2 will be quite a bit (about 146%) better at AF than the GeForce 9600 GSO 512MB. (explain)

GeForce 9800 GX2 76800 Mtexels/sec
GeForce 9600 GSO 512MB 31200 Mtexels/sec
Difference: 45600 (146%)

Pixel Rate

The GeForce 9800 GX2 is quite a bit (more or less 85%) more effective at full screen anti-aliasing than the GeForce 9600 GSO 512MB, and also will be capable of handling higher resolutions without losing too much performance. (explain)

GeForce 9800 GX2 19200 Mpixels/sec
GeForce 9600 GSO 512MB 10400 Mpixels/sec
Difference: 8800 (85%)

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.

One or more cards in this comparison are multi-core. This means that their bandwidth, texel and pixel rates are theoretically doubled - this does not mean the card will actually perform twice as fast, but only that it should in theory be able to. Actual game benchmarks will give a more accurate idea of what it's capable of.

Price Comparison

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GeForce 9600 GSO 512MB

Amazon.com

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GeForce 9800 GX2

Amazon.com

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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 9600 GSO 512MB GeForce 9800 GX2
Manufacturer nVidia nVidia
Year October 2008 Mar 2008
Code Name G94a/b G92
Memory 512 MB 512 MB (x2)
Core Speed 650 MHz 600 MHz (x2)
Memory Speed 1800 MHz 2000 MHz (x2)
Power (Max TDP) 90 watts 197 watts
Bandwidth 57600 MB/sec 128000 MB/sec
Texel Rate 31200 Mtexels/sec 76800 Mtexels/sec
Pixel Rate 10400 Mpixels/sec 19200 Mpixels/sec
Unified Shaders 96 128 (x2)
Texture Mapping Units 48 64 (x2)
Render Output Units 16 16 (x2)
Bus Type GDDR3 GDDR3
Bus Width 256-bit 256-bit (x2)
Fab Process 65/55 nm 65 nm
Transistors 505 million 754 million
Bus PCIe x16 2.0 PCIe x16 2.0
DirectX Version DirectX 10 DirectX 10
OpenGL Version OpenGL 3.0 OpenGL 3.0

Memory Bandwidth: Bandwidth is the max amount of information (measured in megabytes per second) that can be transferred past the external memory interface within a second. The number is calculated by multiplying the bus width by its memory clock speed. If it uses DDR type memory, it must be multiplied by 2 again. If DDR5, multiply by ANOTHER 2x. The better the card's memory bandwidth, the better the card will be in general. It especially helps with anti-aliasing, High Dynamic Range and higher screen resolutions.

Texel Rate: Texel rate is the maximum number of texture map elements (texels) that can be applied per second. This is worked out by multiplying the total texture units by the core speed of the chip. The higher the texel rate, the better the video card will be at handling texture filtering (anisotropic filtering - AF). It is measured in millions of texels applied per 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. The figure is calculated by multiplying the amount of Render Output Units by the the core speed of the card. ROPs (Raster Operations Pipelines - also sometimes called Render Output Units) are responsible for outputting the pixels (image) to the screen. The actual pixel output rate is also dependant on many other factors, most notably the memory bandwidth - the lower the memory bandwidth is, the lower the potential to get to the maximum fill rate.

Display Prices

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GeForce 9600 GSO 512MB

Amazon.com

Check prices at:

GeForce 9800 GX2

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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