Even with its Direct X10 support we would have a hard time purchasing a GeForce 8600 GTS over a 7900 GS. Actually we would probably spend an extra $75 US and pickup an 8800 GTS (320MB) graphics card instead. However those looking to spend $200 US or less have a few options and they of course include the 8600 GTS and 7900 GS. When it comes to the bang for your buck factor overclocking generally plays a huge roll. Therefore we decided to put the 8600 GTS and 7900 GS head to head in a good old fashion overclocking battle!
Without any physical modifications to the card our 7900 GS can easily achieve a 38% core overclock along with a 22% memory frequency boost. The 8600 GTS on the other had managed to bump up the core frequency by just 8% with a 17% memory overclock. Given that the 8600 GTS was already slower in most of the games tested, overclocking both these graphics cards just gave the 7900 GS a greater advantage. Games such as Prey saw the standard 7900 GS defeat the 8600 GTS by a decent margin. However once overclocked the 7900 GS walked all over the 8600 GTS!