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GeForce 8600 GT 256MB GDDR3 vs Radeon HD 6850

Intro

The GeForce 8600 GT 256MB GDDR3 features a GPU clock speed of 540 MHz, and the 256 MB of GDDR3 RAM is set to run at 700 MHz through a 128-bit bus. It also is made up of 32 Stream Processors, 16 TAUs, and 8 Raster Operation Units.

Compare those specifications to the Radeon HD 6850, which makes use of a 40 nm design. AMD has set the core frequency at 775 MHz. The GDDR5 memory is set to run at a speed of 1000 MHz on this specific model. It features 960 SPUs along with 48 TAUs and 32 ROPs.

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Power Usage and Theoretical Benchmarks

Power Consumption (Max TDP)

GeForce 8600 GT 256MB GDDR3 47 Watts
Radeon HD 6850 127 Watts
Difference: 80 Watts (170%)

Memory Bandwidth

Performance-wise, the Radeon HD 6850 should theoretically be a lot superior to the GeForce 8600 GT 256MB GDDR3 overall. (explain)

Radeon HD 6850 128000 MB/sec
GeForce 8600 GT 256MB GDDR3 22400 MB/sec
Difference: 105600 (471%)

Texel Rate

The Radeon HD 6850 is quite a bit (approximately 331%) better at anisotropic filtering than the GeForce 8600 GT 256MB GDDR3. (explain)

Radeon HD 6850 37200 Mtexels/sec
GeForce 8600 GT 256MB GDDR3 8640 Mtexels/sec
Difference: 28560 (331%)

Pixel Rate

The Radeon HD 6850 should be much (more or less 474%) better at FSAA than the GeForce 8600 GT 256MB GDDR3, and able to handle higher screen resolutions more effectively. (explain)

Radeon HD 6850 24800 Mpixels/sec
GeForce 8600 GT 256MB GDDR3 4320 Mpixels/sec
Difference: 20480 (474%)

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 256MB GDDR3

Amazon.com

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Radeon HD 6850

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 256MB GDDR3 Radeon HD 6850
Manufacturer nVidia AMD
Year April 2007 October 2010
Code Name G84 Barts Pro
Memory 256 MB 1024 MB
Core Speed 540 MHz 775 MHz
Memory Speed 1400 MHz 4000 MHz
Power (Max TDP) 47 watts 127 watts
Bandwidth 22400 MB/sec 128000 MB/sec
Texel Rate 8640 Mtexels/sec 37200 Mtexels/sec
Pixel Rate 4320 Mpixels/sec 24800 Mpixels/sec
Unified Shaders 32 960
Texture Mapping Units 16 48
Render Output Units 8 32
Bus Type GDDR3 GDDR5
Bus Width 128-bit 256-bit
Fab Process 80 nm 40 nm
Transistors 289 million 1700 million
Bus PCIe x16 PCIe x16
DirectX Version DirectX 10 DirectX 11
OpenGL Version OpenGL 3.0 OpenGL 4.1

Memory Bandwidth: Memory bandwidth is the max amount of data (in units of megabytes per second) that can be moved over the external memory interface within a second. It is worked out by multiplying the interface width by the speed of its memory. If the card has DDR type RAM, the result 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 anti-aliasing, HDR and high resolutions.

Texel Rate: Texel rate is the maximum texture map elements (texels) that can be processed in one second. This is worked out by multiplying the total number of texture units of the card by the core clock speed of the chip. The higher the texel rate, the better the card will be at handling texture filtering (anisotropic filtering - AF). It is measured in millions of texels applied in a second.

Pixel Rate: Pixel rate is the maximum amount of pixels the video card could possibly write to the local memory per second - measured in millions of pixels per second. The figure is worked out by multiplying the number of Raster Operations Pipelines by the the card's clock speed. ROPs (Raster Operations Pipelines - also sometimes called Render Output Units) are responsible for drawing the pixels (image) on the screen. The actual pixel rate also depends on lots of other factors, most notably the memory bandwidth - the lower the memory bandwidth is, the lower the potential to get to the max fill rate.

Display Prices

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GeForce 8600 GT 256MB GDDR3

Amazon.com

Check prices at:

Radeon HD 6850

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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