Feeds
75%

Nvidia GeForce 8800 GTS graphics card

Cheaper than the GTX, but more bangs per buck?

Build a business case: developing custom apps

Review Plonk a Sparkle card based on Nvidia's GeForce 8800 GTS graphics chip next to its bigger brother, the GeForce 8800 GTX - reviewed here - and you can quickly spot a couple of differences. The GTS is visibly shorter than the GTX - 23cm against 24cm - and it has a single six-pin PCI Express power connector sticking off the end, instead of the pair of side-mounted connectors that you find on the GTX...

sparkle nvidia geforce 8800 gts

Other than that, the GTX and GTS have a great deal in common which isn't surprising as they're both based on the same 'G80' chip. The specifications tell us that the GTS board has a 500MHz core - the GTX runs at 575MHz - 640MB of 1,600MHz memory - against 768MB running at 1,800MHz. The memory controller is 320-bit job rather than 384-bit, and that cuts the memory bandwidth from 86.4GBps to 64GBps.

The 8800 GTX introduced us to unified shaders - or Stream Processors, as Nvidia likes to call them - and the GTS has also been cut back in this department. The GTX has 128 SPs running at 1,350MHz while the GTS has 96 running at 1,200MHz.

The final change comes in the Raster Operation Units (ROPs) which are cut from six in the GTX to five in the GTS. Each ROP can render four pixels so this is the equivalent of cutting back from 24 old-style ROPs to 20 ROPs, which is consistent with the other changes. The GeForce 8800 GTS hasn't been crippled but it is certainly hobbled compared to the GTX.

On the bright side, these changes mean that Nvidia recommends that you install a 450W power supply for a single GTX graphics card while a GTS only requires a 400W unit, and of course the GTS is quite a bit cheaper than the GTX. Now we're not going to sneeze at a £100 saving as it's 20 percent of the price of a GTX, but what is the impact of those changes?

Build a business case: developing custom apps

More from The Register

next story
iPad? More like iFAD: We reveal why Apple fell into IBM's arms
But never fear fanbois, you're still lapping up iPhones, Macs
Sonos AXES support for Apple's iOS4 and 5
Want to use your iThing? You can't - it's too old
You didn't get the MeMO? Asus Pad 7 Android tab is ... not bad
Really, er, stands out among cheapie 7-inchers
Apple winks at parents: C'mon, get your kid a tweaked Macbook Pro
Cheapest models given new processors, more RAM
4K video on terrestrial TV? Not if the WRC shares frequencies to mobiles
Have your say with Ofcom now, before Freeview becomes Feeview
Leaked Windows Phone 8.1 Update specs tease details of Nokia's next mobes
New screen sizes, dual SIMs, voice over LTE, and more
YES, iPhones ARE getting slower with each new release of iOS
Old hardware doesn't get any faster with new software
prev story

Whitepapers

Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Consolidation: The Foundation for IT Business Transformation
In this whitepaper learn how effective consolidation of IT and business resources can enable multiple, meaningful business benefits.
Backing up Big Data
Solving backup challenges and “protect everything from everywhere,” as we move into the era of big data management and the adoption of BYOD.
Boost IT visibility and business value
How building a great service catalog relieves pressure points and demonstrates the value of IT service management.
Why and how to choose the right cloud vendor
The benefits of cloud-based storage in your processes. Eliminate onsite, disk-based backup and archiving in favor of cloud-based data protection.