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Word on the street is that NVIDIA is extremely happy with the 28nm yields of the Kepler architecture and so they decided to launch two high-end cards before stripping down the chip and releasing more value-priced cards. Even with the good yield of the 28nm architecture, the GTX 680 is out-of-stock almost everywhere.
Apparently, even with the good yield, it appears that there is quite the selection of chips that aren't performing up to snuff. NVIDIA is, according to sources, preparing to launch two new, cut-down versions of the GK-104. The GTX 670 (670Ti) will be powered by the GK104-335-A2 whereas the GTX 660 (660Ti) could be powered by a different revision.
The 670 is said to feature 1344 CUDA cores with a 256-bit memory bus and 2GB of GDDR5 memory. Clocks for the chip should be somewhere around 915-950MHz for the core and 1.25GHz for the memory. The 660 should feature a fully disabled GPC (Graphics Processing Cluster) disabled. This means it will feature 1152 CUDA codes with a cut-down 192-bit memory bus. This memory bus would force 768MB or 1.5GB of memory.
VR-Zone expects pricing to look like:
- $999 - GTX 690 4GB
- $579 - GTX 680 4GB OC (Preferred AIB Pricing)
- $499 - GTX 680 2GB
- $379 - GTX 670 4GB (Preferred AIB Pricing)
- $399 - GTX 670 2GB
- $249 - GTX 660 (Ti?) 1.5GB
Cards are expected to be announced sometime next week with wide availability by Computex in early June.
NVIDIA GTX 690 shows up in wooden crate, confirms what reviewers were thinking when crowbar showed up
Last week, NVIDIA sent out boxes that contained crowbars to reviewers around the web. The crowbar had the words "for use in case of zombies or..." and the NVIDIA logo. Nothing more and nothing less. LegitReviews hypothesized that it could be used to open a wooden crate and they were right: a wooden crate was delivered to their office this morning.
As you can see in the picture, the crate warns of "weapons grade gaming power" and has more writing on the side. "0b1010110010", which is is binary for "690" is one of the lines on the side, but I can't decipher what the other two lines mean. Of course you can already guess that the GEFORCE GTX 690 was inside.
With the pry bar that was sent out last week employed, the top of the crate was no match. Inside sat the GTX 690 in all of its $999 glory. Drivers, as of yet, are unavailable and the GTX 690 is set to be available in limited supply May 3. It looks like reviewers will have fewer than 3 days to do their magic before the new card goes on sale.
"The GTX 690 is truly a work of art-gorgeous on the outside with amazing performance on the inside," said Brian Kelleher, senior vice president of GPU engineering at NVIDIA. "Gamers will love playing on multiple screens at high resolutions with all the eye candy turned on. And they'll relish showing their friends how beautiful the cards look inside their systems."
We've all been salivating at the mouth for it, well, maybe not you, but I sure have. What are we salivating for? NVIDIA's answer to the question "who is your Daddy?" Well, their answer? The GEFORCE GTX 690.
Kepler has had an interesting launch, where NVIDIA just dumped the GTX 680 onto the market and pretty much said "have at it, everyone" and it was a great contender to the already fast Radeon HD 7970. But how good does the dual-Kepler GTX 690 need to be? Usually we get two decent cards with built-in SLI, but NVIDIA have opted for dual GTX 680s for the GTX 690.
This time round, we get two fully enabled GK104 cores bursting at the proverbial seams. NVIDIA are also setting some high targets on performance per watt, where NVIDIA are able to leverage the GK104's cores onto a single GPU without having to worry about it requiring super-cooling, or sucking down serious power. The GEFORCE GTX 690 also has something else high-end up its sleeve, it's price. It will launch at $999, but did you really expect this beast to be cheap? Didn't think so.
Ah, RumorTT, it's my favorite part of the day. Recent rumbles are pointing toward NVIDIA launching its GEFORCE GTX 670 alongside their dual-Kepler-based GTX 690 graphics card. This comes from Fudzilla, who notes their sources are talking of a May 10 launch date for both GPUs.
We're just hours away from the official announcement of some sort at the GeForce LAN/NVIDIA Gaming Festival (NGF) in Shanghai, China, on the April 28. This is where we should see NVIDIA's dual GK104 GPU, the GTX 690. Fudzilla's sources are saying that the official release date is the 10th of May, and that the GTX 690 should see a partner in its launch in the form of the GTX 670.
Availability, that's always an important question with GPU launches. GTX 690 availability is said to be not great at all, with some partners receiving cards next week. We should have more information as this happens. More news as it happens.
It's hard to have enough screen real estate to do everything that we want. And gaming across multiple monitors helps to engage the player all the more. This is why AMD created Eyefinity. Moreover, this is why today PowerColor released the only HD 7870 graphics card that supports up to 6 monitors using Eyefinity technology.
The HD 7870 Eyefinity 6 supports up to 6 monitors via its six mini display ports onboard. The graphics card comes clocked with a 1000MHz core clock with a 1200MHz memory clock. It sports 2GB of memory on a 256-bit bus. And being a 7000 series card, it supports DirectX 11.1 so that all of the eye candy is available.
AMD have now announced that they won't be supporting Radeon HD 4000 series and below in Windows 8. Most people will read this and be shocked, but the GPUs are old now and Windows 8 by the time it comes out, will be considered a 2013 release.
Windows should ship with some form of support for legacy Radeon cards, but AMD themselves won't be providing future driver updates for those GPUs. AMD have made this quite clear in their press release:
Also with regards to Windows 8 support for the AMD Radeon HD 2000, 3000, 4000 Series of products; the In-the-box AMD Graphics driver that ships with Windows 8 will include support for the AMD Radeon HD 2000, 3000, and 4000 Series, and it will support the WDDM 1.1 driver level features. The AMD Catalyst driver for Windows 8 will only include support for WDDM 1.2 support products (AMD Radeon HD 5000 and later).
We know Team Green are ready to launch their dual-GPU Kepler card, the GEFORCE GTX 690, but where are Team Red and their Radeon HD 7990? If current rumblings are to be believed, we should expect AMD to unveil the Radeon HD 7990 at Computex 2012 in Taipei.
This is only 6 weeks away, which means if NVIDIA drop the GTX 690 ball in between now and then, NVIDIA will have four weeks of people talking about their product, building hype and what not. But, it gives AMD four weeks to re-tweak their GPU and have it ready to open up a can of red whoop ass on NVIDIA, hopefully.
The HD 7990 is expected to sport two full HD 7970 GPUs onto a single PCB. It should also have 6GB of GDDR5 baked into it, as well as 4096 GCN cores, and the ability to run 6-screen Eyefinity setups right out of the box. We will be at Computex in force this year, and will have as much news as we can of this new Red Beast. Hopefully it'll punch all other GPUs in the nuts, again.
I love it when companies throw jabs back and forth in marketing. The latest example of this is NVIDIA claiming that "GeForce puts the Ultra in Ultrabook." While I do tend to agree with NVIDIA that Ultrabooks need some sort of discrete graphics option, I'm not sure that I would be calling out Intel's Ivy Bridge quite yet. They did, after all, do a lot of work on the graphics processor.
But, then again, when has a big company taken my advice before? Well, I guess they would have to ask for it first. But I digress, NVIDIA is right that Intel's graphics are still pretty poor in comparison to NVIDIA's or AMD's offerings. The HD4000 graphics of Ivy Bridge can only handle around 43% of current games whereas a lowly GT640M can handle 100%.
It seems as though Intel is taking this in stride. After all, they do acknowledge that enthusiasts and gamers will still want a discrete GPU. It's good that they will let NVIDIA make fun of their new Ultrabook spec. Maybe, if enough people agree, they will change the spec to include a small descrete GPU.
Never settle. That's AMD's motto for their new Radeon HD 7900M series of GPUs for notebooks. In terms of specs, the Radeon HD 7970M nearly meets what the desktop Radeon HD 7870 GPU, except for slightly lower GPU core clock speeds.
The HD 7970M sports 1280 Graphics CoreNext stream processors, 80 TMUs, 32 ROPs, and a 256-bit wide GDDR5 memory interface which features 2GB of memory. Core clocks are at 850MHz, with 1200MHz (4.8GHz effective) GDDR5 memory clocks which push out 153.6GB/sec memory bandwidth.
The Radeon HD 7970M also features something called AMD Enduro Technology which "seamlessly powers down" the GPU when it's not required, to below even 1W. The HD 7970M should be seen baked into notebooks over the coming days.
There are some rumors floating around that Nvidia could be announcing the newest member of the Kepler architecture at GeForce Lan in Shanghai. With the arrival of crowbars to reviewers and a countdown to an announcement by Nvidia at that same LAN seems to lend credibility to this rumor, however, I wouldn't hold my breathe. We haven't had enough leaks quite yet.
Well, the first of many leaks can be seen above. This is the first picture of the yet unannounced GTX690. The GTX690 should either be a dual GK104 or possibly the GK110 chip that could feature 7 billion transistors. I would prefer it being the single, 7 billion transistor chip as dual chip cards seem to be plagued by more problems.
In the picture, you can see that the card is massive. It features a single PCB so since the fan is situated in the center, it follows that the chips, if a dual GPU card, are situated on either end of the PCB. Due to the angle of the picture, it's hard to say much more about the chip. Obviously it can be expected that it will be one beast of a card after what Kepler was able to do.