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VGA Charts 2008: 101 Configurations Tested

Chip Comparison And Test Configuration

All cards run at the default clock speed. Only the GeForce 8800 GTS 512 was also tested with overclocking values. We did not use SLI and CrossFire with graphics chips that have an identification of x200 to x400, due to their low 3D performance. The Radeon X800 XT from AMD represents the oldest generation in the test. And even then, since this card only supports Shader Model 2, some games won’t work with it. As a result, we chose not to test the other X800 and X850 models. The Radeon X600 and X700 also no longer make sense with these demanding test settings.

The current GeForce 6 models—the 6600 GT, 6800 GT and 6800 Ultra—lead off for Nvidia. We did not include the in-between versions, like the GeForce 8800 GS, 9600 GTO or 8800 GT with 256 MB. The values of the 9600 GT with 1024 MB can be transferred to the 9600 GT with 512 MB. When comparing the GeForce 8800 GT 512 against the 8800 GT 1024, it is clear that the doubled memory mainly affects the game Crysis with AA enabled, but the additional frames do not play a large part in the overall results.

ChipCode nameMemoryGPU rateShaderMemory rateSPs
GeForce GTX 280 SLIGT2001024 GDDR3602 MHz4.0, 1296 MHz2214 MHz240
GeForce GTX 280GT2001024 GDDR3602 MHz4.0, 1296 MHz2214 MHz240
GeForce GTX 260 SLIGT200896 GDDR3576 MHz4.0, 1242 MHz1998 MHz192
GeForce GTX 260GT200896 GDDR3576 MHz4.0, 1242 MHz1998 MHz192
GeForce 9800 GX22xG922x512 MB GDDR3600 MHz4.0, 1500 MHz2000 MHz2x128
GeForce 9800 GTX SLIG92512 MB GDDR3675 MHz4 . 0, 1688 MHz2200 MHz128
GeForce 9800 GTXG92512 MB GDDR3675 MHz4.0, 1688 MHz2200 MHz128
GeForce 9600 GT SLIG941024 MB GDDR3650 MHz4.0, 1625 MHz1800 MHz64
GeForce 9600 GTG941024 MB GDDR3650 MHz4.0, 1625 MHz1800 MHz64
GeForce 8800 GTS OCG92512 MB GDDR3730 MHz4.0, 1825 MHz1944 MHz128
GeForce 8800 GTS SLIG92512 MB GDDR3650 MHz4.0, 1625 MHz1944 MHz128
GeForce 8800 GTSG92512 MB GDDR3650 MHz4.0, 1625 MHz1944 MHz128
GeForce 8800 GT SLIG921024 MB GDDR3600 MHz4.0, 1500 MHz1800 MHz112
GeForce 8800 GTG921024 MB GDDR3600 MHz4.0, 1500 MHz1800 MHz112
GeForce 8800 GT SLIG92512 MB GDDR3600 MHz4.0, 1500 MHz1800 MHz112
GeForce 8800 GTG92512 MB GDDR3600 MHz4.0, 1500 MHz1800 MHz112
GeForce 8800 Ultra 3SLIG80768 MB GDDR3612 MHz4.0, 1512 MHz2160 MHz128
GeForce 8800 Ultra SLIG80768 MB GDDR3612 MHz4.0, 1512 MHz2160 MHz128
GeForce 8800 UltraG80768 MB GDDR3612 MHz4.0, 1512 MHz2160 MHz128
GeForce 8800 GTXG80768 MB GDDR3576 MHz4.0, 1350 MHz1800 MHz128
GeForce 8800 GTSG80640 MB GDDR3500 MHz4.0, 1188 MHz1600 MHz96
GeForce 8800 GTS SLIG80320 MB GDDR3500 MHz4.0, 1188 MHz1600 MHz96
GeForce 8800 GTSG80320 MB GDDR3500 MHz4.0, 1188 MHz1600 MHz96
GeForce 8600 GTSG84512 MB GDDR3675 MHz4.0, 1450 MHz2016 MHz32
GeForce 8600 GTS SLIG84256 MB GDDR3675 MHz4.0, 1450 MHz2016 MHz32
GeForce 8600 GTSG84256 MB GDDR3675 MHz4.0, 1450 MHz2016 MHz32
GeForce 8600 GT SLIG84256 MB GDDR3540 MHz4.0, 1180 MHz1400 MHz32
GeForce 8600 GTG84256 MB GDDR3540 MHz4.0, 1180 MHz1400 MHz32
GeForce 8500 GTG86256 MB DDR2459 MHz4.0, 918 MHz800 MHz16
GeForce 8400 GSG86256 MB DDR2459 MHz4.0, 918 MHz800 MHz16
GeForce 7950 GX2 SLI4xG714x512 MB GDDR3500 MHz3.01200 MHz4x24P 8V
GeForce 7950 GX22xG712x512 MB GDDR3500 MHz3.01200 MHz2x24P 8V
GeForce 7950 GT SLIG71512 MB GDDR3550 MHz3.01400 MHz24P 8V
GeForce 7950 GTG71512 MB GDDR3550 MHz3.01400 MHz24P 8V
GeForce 7900 GTXG71512 MB GDDR3650 MHz3.01600 MHz24P 8V
GeForce 7900 GTOG71512 MB GDDR3650 MHz3.01320 MHz24P 8V
GeForce 7900 GT SLIG71256 MB GDDR3450 MHz3.01320 MHz24P 8V
GeForce 7900 GTG71256 MB GDDR3450 MHz3.01320 MHz24P 8V
GeForce 7900 GS SLIG71256 MB GDDR3450 MHz3.01320 MHz20P 7V
GeForce 7900 GSG71256 MB GDDR3450 MHz3.01320 MHz20P 7V
GeForce 7800 GTXG70512 MB GDDR3550 MHz3.01700 MHz24P 8V
GeForce 7800 GTX SLIG70256 MB GDDR3430 MHz3.01200 MHz24P 8V
GeForce 7800 GTXG70256 MB GDDR3430 MHz3.01200 MHz24P 8V
GeForce 7800 GT SLIG70256 MB GDDR3400 MHz3.01000 MHz20P 7V
GeForce 7800 GTG70256 MB GDDR3400 MHz3.01000 MHz20P 7V
GeForce 7600 GT SLIG73256 MB GDDR3560 MHz3.01400 MHz12P 5V
GeForce 7600 GTG73256 MB GDDR3560 MHz3.01400 MHz12P 5V
GeForce 7600 GS SLIG73256 MB DDR2400 MHz3.0800 MHz12P 5V
GeForce 7600 GSG73256 MB DDR2400 MHz3.0800 MHz12P 5V
GeForce 7300 GTG73256 MB DDR2350 MHz3.0666 MHz8P 4V
GeForce 7300 GSG72128 MB DDR2550 MHz3.0810 MHz4P 3V
GeForce 6800 UltraNV40256 MB GDDR3425 MHz3.01100 MHz16P 6V
GeForce 6800 GTNV40256 MB GDDR3350 MHz3.01000 MHz16P 6V
GeForce 6600 GTNV43128 MB GDDR3500 MHz3.01000 MHz8P 3V
ChipMemory busManufacturing processTransistorsInterface
GeForce GTX 280 SLI512 Bit65 nm1400 MBPCIe 2.0
GeForce GTX 280512 Bit65 nm1400 MBPCIe 2.0
GeForce GTX 260 SLI448 Bit65 nm1400 MBPCIe 2.0
GeForce GTX 260448 Bit65 nm1400 MBPCIe 2.0
GeForce 9800 GX22x256 Bit65 nm2x754 MBPCIe 2.0
GeForce 9800 GTX SLI256 Bit65 nm754 MBPCIe 2.0
GeForce 9800 GTX256 Bit65 nm754 MBPCIe 2.0
GeForce 9600 GT SLI256 Bit65 nm505 MBPCIe 2.0
GeForce 9600 GT256 Bit65 nm505 MBPCIe 2.0
GeForce 8800 GTS OC256 Bit65 nm754 MBPCIe 2.0
GeForce 8800 GTS SLI256 Bit65 nm754 MBPCIe 2.0
GeForce 8800 GTS256 Bit65 nm754 MBPCIe 2.0
GeForce 8800 GT SLI256 Bit65 nm754 MBPCIe 2.0
GeForce 8800 GT256 Bit65 nm754 MBPCIe 2.0
GeForce 8800 GT SLI256 Bit65 nm754 MBPCIe 2.0
GeForce 8800 GT256 Bit65 nm754 MBPCIe 2.0
GeForce 8800 Ultra 3SLI384 Bit90 nm681 MBPCIe 1
GeForce 8800 Ultra SLI384 Bit90 nm681 MBPCIe 1
GeForce 8800 Ultra384 Bit90 nm681 MBPCIe 1
GeForce 8800 GTX384 Bit90 nm681 MBPCIe 1
GeForce 8800 GTS320 Bit90 nm681 MBPCIe 1
GeForce 8800 GTS SLI320 Bit90 nm681 MBPCIe 1
GeForce 8800 GTS320 Bit90 nm681 MBPCIe 1
GeForce 8600 GTS128 Bit80 nm289 MBPCIe 1
GeForce 8600 GTS SLI128 Bit80 nm289 MBPCIe 1
GeForce 8600 GTS128 Bit80 nm289 MBPCIe 1
GeForce 8600 GT SLI128 Bit80 nm289 MBPCIe 1
GeForce 8600 GT128 Bit80 nm289 MBPCIe 1
GeForce 8500 GT128 Bit80 nm210 MBPCIe 1
GeForce 8400 GS64 Bit80 nm210 MBPCIe 1
GeForce 7950 GX2 SLI4x256 Bit90 nm4x278 MBPCIe 1
GeForce 7950 GX22x256 Bit90 nm2x278 MBPCIe 1
GeForce 7950 GT SLI256 Bit90 nm278 MBPCIe 1
GeForce 7950 GT256 Bit90 nm278 MBPCIe 1
GeForce 7900 GTX256 Bit90 nm278 MBPCIe 1
GeForce 7900 GTO256 Bit90 nm278 MBPCIe 1
GeForce 7900 GT SLI256 Bit90 nm278 MBPCIe 1
GeForce 7900 GT256 Bit90 nm278 MBPCIe 1
GeForce 7900 GS SLI256 Bit90 nm278 MBPCIe 1
GeForce 7900 GS256 Bit90 nm278 MBPCIe 1
GeForce 7800 GTX256 Bit110 nm303 MBPCIe 1
GeForce 7800 GTX SLI256 Bit110 nm303 MBPCIe 1
GeForce 7800 GTX256 Bit110 nm303 MBPCIe 1
GeForce 7800 GT SLI256 Bit110 nm303 MBPCIe 1
GeForce 7800 GT256 Bit110 nm303 MBPCIe 1
GeForce 7600 GT SLI128 Bit90 nm178 MBPCIe 1
GeForce 7600 GT128 Bit90 nm178 MBPCIe 1
GeForce 7600 GS SLI128 Bit90 nm178 MBPCIe 1
GeForce 7600 GS128 Bit90 nm178 MBPCIe 1
GeForce 7300 GT128 Bit90 nm178 MBPCIe 1
GeForce 7300 GS64 Bit90 nm112 MBPCIe 1
GeForce 6800 Ultra256 Bit130 nm222 MBPCIe 1
GeForce 6800 GT256 Bit130 nm222 MBPCIe 1
GeForce 6600 GT128 Bit110 nm146 MBPCIe 1
ChipCode nameMemoryGPU rateShaderMemory rateSPs
Radeon HD 4870 CFRV770512 MB GDDR5750 MHz4.13600 MHz800
Radeon HD 4870RV770512 MB GDDR5750 MHz4.13600 MHz800
Radeon HD 4850 CFRV770512 MB GDDR3625 MHz4.11986 MHz800
Radeon HD 4850RV770512 MB GDDR3625 MHz4.11986 MHz800
Radeon HD 3870 4CF2xR6804x512 MB GDDR3825 MHz4.11802 MHz4x320
Radeon HD 3870 3CFR680/RV6703x512 MB GDDR3/4825/800 MHz4.11802/2252 MHz3x320
Radeon HD 3870 X2R6802x512 MB GDDR3825 MHz4.11802 MHz2x320
Radeon HD 3870 CFRV670512 MB GDDR4775 MHz4.12252 MHz320
Radeon HD 3870RV670512 MB GDDR4775 MHz4.12252 MHz320
Radeon HD 3850 CFRV670256 MB GDDR3670 MHz4.11658 MHz320
Radeon HD 3850RV670256 MB GDDR3670 MHz4.11658 MHz320
Radeon HD 3650 CFRV635512 MB GDDR3725 MHz4.11602 MHz120
Radeon HD 3650RV635512 MB GDDR3725 MHz4.11602 MHz120
Radeon HD 3470RV620256 MB GDDR3796 MHz4.11886 MHz40
Radeon HD 3450RV620256 MB DDR2594 MHz4.1990 MHz40
Radeon HD 2900 XT CFR600512 MB GDDR3743 MHz4.01656 MHz320
Radeon HD 2900 XTR600512 MB GDDR3743 MHz4.01656 MHz320
Radeon HD 2600 XT CFRV630512 MB GDDR3800 MHz4.01400 MHz120
Radeon HD 2600 XTRV630512 MB GDDR3800 MHz4.01400 MHz120
Radeon HD 2600 XTRV630256 MB GDDR4800 MHz4.02200 MHz120
Radeon HD 2600 Pro CFRV630256 MB GDDR3600 MHz4.01400 MHz120
Radeon HD 2600 ProRV630256 MB GDDR3600 MHz4.01400 MHz120
Radeon HD 2400 XTRV610256 MB GDDR3700 MHz4.01400 MHz40
Radeon HD 2400 ProRV610256 MB DDR2525 MHz4.0800 MHz40
Radeon X1950 XTX CFR580+512 MB GDDR4650 MHz3.02000 MHz48P 8V
Radeon X1950 XTXR580+512 MB GDDR4650 MHz3.02000 MHz48P 8V
Radeon X1950 XTR580+256 MB GDDR3625 MHz3.01800 MHz48P 8V
Radeon X1950 ProRV570256 MB GDDR3575 MHz3.01380 MHz36P 8V
Radeon X1950 GTRV570256 MB GDDR3500 MHz3.01200 MHz36P 8V
Radeon X1900 XT CFR580512 MB GDDR3625 MHz3.01450 MHz48P 8V
Radeon X1900 XTR580512 MB GDDR3625 MHz3.01450 MHz48P 8V
Radeon X1900 XTR580256 MB GDDR3625 MHz3.01450 MHz48P 8V
Radeon X1900 GTR580256 MB GDDR3575 MHz3.01188 MHz36P 8V
Radeon X1800 XTR520512 MB GDDR3631 MHz3.01504 MHz16P 8V
Radeon X1800 XTR520256 MB GDDR3621 MHz3.01494 MHz16P 8V
Radeon X1800 XLR520256 MB GDDR3500 MHz3.0990 MHz16P 8V
Radeon X1800 GTOR520256 MB GDDR3500 MHz3.0990 MHz16P 8V
Radeon X1650 XTRV560256 MB GDDR3575 MHz3.01350 MHz24P 8V
Radeon X1650 ProRV530256 MB GDDR3594 MHz3.01378 MHz12P 5V
Radeon X1600 XT CFRV530256 MB GDDR3581 MHz3.01368 MHz12P 5V
Radeon X1600 XTRV530256 MB GDDR3581 MHz3.01368 MHz12P 5V
Radeon X1600 Pro CFRV530256 MB DDR2500 MHz3.0784 MHz12P 5V
Radeon X1600 ProRV530256 MB DDR2500 MHz3.0784 MHz12P 5V
Radeon X1300 XTRV530256 MB GDDR3587 MHz3.01378 MHz12P 5V
Radeon X1300 ProRV515128 MB GDDR3594 MHz3.0990 MHz4P 2V
Radeon X1300RV515256 MB DDR2446 MHz3.0496 MHz4P 2V
Radeon X800 XTR423256 MB GDDR3506 MHz2.01000 MHz16P 6V
ChipMemory busManufacturing processTransistorsInterface
Radeon HD 4870 CF256 Bit55 nm965 MBPCIe 2.0
Radeon HD 4870256 Bit55 nm965 MBPCIe 2.0
Radeon HD 4850 CF256 Bit55 nm965 MBPCIe 2.0
Radeon HD 4850256 Bit55 nm965 MBPCIe 2.0
Radeon HD 3870 4CF4x256 Bit55 nm4x666 MBPCIe 2.0
Radeon HD 3870 3CF3x256 Bit55 nm3x666 MBPCIe 2.0
Radeon HD 3870 X22x256 Bit55 nm2x666 MBPCIe 2.0
Radeon HD 3870 CF256 Bit55 nm666 MBPCIe 2.0
Radeon HD 3870256 Bit55 nm666 MBPCIe 2.0
Radeon HD 3850 CF256 Bit55 nm666 MBPCIe 2.0
Radeon HD 3850256 Bit55 nm666 MBPCIe 2.0
Radeon HD 3650 CF128 Bit55 nm378 MBPCIe 2.0
Radeon HD 3650128 Bit55 nm378 MBPCIe 2.0
Radeon HD 347064 Bit55 nm181 MBPCIe 2.0
Radeon HD 345064 Bit55 nm181 MBPCIe 2.0
Radeon HD 2900 XT CF512 Bit80 nm720 MBPCIe 1
Radeon HD 2900 XT512 Bit80 nm720 MBPCIe 1
Radeon HD 2600 XT CF128 Bit65 nm390 MBPCIe 1
Radeon HD 2600 XT128 Bit65 nm390 MBPCIe 1
Radeon HD 2600 XT128 Bit65 nm390 MBPCIe 1
Radeon HD 2600 Pro CF128 Bit65 nm390 MBPCIe 1
Radeon HD 2600 Pro128 Bit65 nm390 MBPCIe 1
Radeon HD 2400 XT64 Bit65 nm180 MBPCIe 1
Radeon HD 2400 Pro64 Bit65 nm180 MBPCIe 1
Radeon X1950 XTX CF256 Bit90 nm384 MBPCIe 1
Radeon X1950 XTX256 Bit90 nm384 MBPCIe 1
Radeon X1950 XT256 Bit90 nm384 MBPCIe 1
Radeon X1950 Pro256 Bit80 nm330 MBPCIe 1
Radeon X1950 GT256 Bit80 nm330 MBPCIe 1
Radeon X1900 XT CF256 Bit90 nm384 MBPCIe 1
Radeon X1900 XT256 Bit90 nm384 MBPCIe 1
Radeon X1900 XT256 Bit90 nm384 MBPCIe 1
Radeon X1900 GT256 Bit90 nm384 MBPCIe 1
Radeon X1800 XT256 Bit90 nm321 MBPCIe 1
Radeon X1800 XT256 Bit90 nm321 MBPCIe 1
Radeon X1800 XL256 Bit90 nm321 MBPCIe 1
Radeon X1800 GTO256 Bit90 nm321 MBPCIe 1
Radeon X1650 XT128 Bit80 nm330 MBPCIe 1
Radeon X1650 Pro128 Bit90 nm157 MBPCIe 1
Radeon X1600 XT CF128 Bit90 nm157 MBPCIe 1
Radeon X1600 XT128 Bit90 nm157 MBPCIe 1
Radeon X1600 Pro CF128 Bit90 nm157 MBPCIe 1
Radeon X1600 Pro128 Bit90 nm157 MBPCIe 1
Radeon X1300 XT128 Bit90 nm157 MBPCIe 1
Radeon X1300 Pro64 Bit90 nm105 MBPCIe 1
Radeon X1300128 Bit90 nm105 MBPCIe 1
Radeon X800 XT256 Bit130 nm120 MBPCIe 1

Memory rate = DDR clock rate doubled; physical rate is half
DDR5 clock rate quadrupled; physical rate is one quarter
SPs= Stream Processors; P and V = Pixel shader and Vertex shader
TC = Turbo Cache
HM = Hyper Memory
OC = overclocked (clock rate higher than default)
SLI = Parallel operation with 2 Nvidia cards
3SLI = Parallel operation with 3 Nvidia graphics chips
4SLI = Parallel operation with 4 Nvidia graphics chips
CF = CrossFire, parallel operation with 2 AMD cards
3CF = CrossFire, parallel operation with 3 AMD graphics chips
4CF = CrossFire, parallel operation with 4 AMD graphics chips
R680 = 2xRV670
Shader 2.0 = DirectX 9.0; 3.0 = DirectX 9.0c; 4.0 = DirectX 10; Shader 4.1 = DirectX 10.1

CPUIntel Core 2 Extreme X6800 @ 2.93 GHz (11x 266 MHz),Socket 775, 1.28 V, 65 nm, 4096 KB L2 cache
FSB1066 MHz (4x 266 MHz)
MotherboardAsus P5E3 Deluxe, PCIe 2.0 2x16, ICH9R
ChipsetIntel X38
Memory2x 1 GB, Ballistix (Crucial Technology) 1.5 V,DDR3 1066 7-7-7-20 (2x 533 MHz)
AudioIntel High Definition Audio
LANIntel 1000 Pro
DrivesWestern Digital WD5000AAKS 500 GB, SATA, 16 MB cache,Hitachi 120 GB, SATA, 8 MB cache
DVDGigabyte GO-D1600C
Power SupplyCoolerMaster RS-850-EMBA 850 W
MotherboardAsus P5N-T Deluxe, PCIe 2.0 2x16
ChipsetNvidia nforce 780i SLI
Memory2x1 GB, A-Data Technology 1.8 V, DDR2 800 5-5-5-18 (2x 400 MHz)
AudioADI 1988B SoundMax
LANMarvell 88E1116 Gigabit
GraphicsAMD Catalyst 8.6Nvidia Forceware 175.16, GTX 260 and GTX 280 Forceware 177.39
Operating systemWindows Vista Enterprise SP1
DirectX10 and 10.1
Chipset driverX38 Intel 8.3.1.1009780i Nvidia nforce 9.64
  • chise1
    Thanks guys!
    Reply
  • amdfangirl
    Very good! Thanks guys!

    If only you tested F@H PPD...
    Reply
  • rocky1234
    Not to nit pick but ummm where is the Radeon 4870x2 2GB card in those charts or did I miss it you know the one with 2GB memory umm 800x2 shaders GDDR5 memory 3.6Ghz rated at & 750 core x2 whatever.
    Reply
  • c0d3r
    So totally Awesome :D Gooood Job THG! What wud i do without u !
    Reply
  • Mathos
    Just curious. Why is it you're using catalyst 8.6 for the ATI cards which doesn't have proper support for the 4000 series cards, instead of 8.7 or 8.8? Yet for the Nvidia cards, you use the most up to date drivers.
    Reply
  • cangelini
    Rocky1234Not to nit pick but ummm where is the Radeon 4870x2 2GB card in those charts or did I miss it you know the one with 2GB memory umm 800x2 shaders GDDR5 memory 3.6Ghz rated at & 750 core x2 whatever.
    As mentioned in the charts introduction, these numbers take hours upon hours to compile, which means setting cut-offs for the product submissions and drivers. Unfortunately, the X2 didn't make it. However, there are results for a pair of 4870s in CrossFire, which is a roughly equivalent configuration. You'll also notice that there are no 4600-series Radeons. Again, same issue.
    Reply
  • ossie
    Why do I have the impression that at THG is a persistent confusion between power and energy?
    Reply
  • JeanLuc
    Great job, I'm always pointing people to the charts now they can compare the latest hardware.

    The charts also show the difference between games they are coded well and ones that aren't. Compare Crysis (very high quality) and HL2 Ep2 at 1920 x 1200 4xAA 8xAF, on Crysis even the best hardware left begging for mercy at around 24fps, yet HL2 EP2 which looks just as good (graphically speaking) IMO will run at 30 FPS on a 8600 GTS (yes an 8600 GTS!) and X1800XL. A small portion of the difference can be put down to DX10 but not all of it.
    Reply
  • Wonder why you insist on using catalyst 8.6 - a 3/4 months old driver, out *before* the whole HD4xx0 series and not really supporting it. And by the time the 48x0 cards were released you also had a better driver with actual support the the cards (and some 10% performance boost).
    Reply
  • buzzlightbeer
    OMFG they did it again, why oh why did they use 8.6 drivers didnt they learn from all the annoyed people from the last test
    Reply