Graphics Wars Heat Up As Nvidia, AMD Launch Cards

Nvidia and Advanced Micro Devices released new graphics processors Monday as the two chip makers continued to compete on discrete graphics products while emerging as allies of a sort in promoting the possibilities of GPU computing in the face of CPU giant Intel's uncertain steps in that direction.

Nvidia's new GeForce GTX 200 series includes the GeForce GTX 280, available in quantity starting Tuesday for a suggested manufacturers' price of $649, and the GeForce GTX 260, available June 26 with a price tag of $399. The GTX 280, with 240 processors and a full gigabyte of frame buffer memory, is clearly Santa Clara, Calif.-based Nvidia's latest edge-pushing high-end consumer card, while the 192-processor, 896MB GTX 260 has humbler specs, but not by much.

Up the road in Sunnyvale, Calif., AMD's latest pair of consumer cards from its ATI graphics division target a lower portion of the discrete market. The new ATI Radeon HD 4800 series will deliver a teraflop of graphics performance, according to Rick Bergman, GM of AMD's Graphics Products Group. And the Radeon HD 4850, set for release June 25, will do it for less than $200, Bergman said. The second card announced Monday is the Radeon HD 4870. It's a bit more powerful and a bit more pricey at around $300 than the 4850, and isn't scheduled for availability until July 8.

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I switched from ATI (X800 GTO2 Limited Edition) to Nvidia 8800 GTS and the only complain i have is drivers, they release WHQL once in a while. I bought it a year and a hal ago and i think that there are only 4 or 5 WHQL drivers released. And the latest WHQL are really bad because they cause crashes and some games just produce a blank screen and you need to reboot.

I miss the monthly dose of ATI drivers. They are very good at this.

I will read some reviews of their new cards, maybe i consider them for an upgrade.

Yeah, but I bought a BFG GeForce 8800 GTX 768mb OC2 at Christmas and there was no sign of the 9xxx series cards at that time. A few months later they appeared. The 8xxx series cards were the current generation for over a year. But the new 2xx series cars have obsoleted the 9xxx series in only a few months. Why didn't they just add new models to the 9xxx series instead?

Obsolete? Hardly. Many people will be using 8800 and 9800 series cards for a while.

No complaints here, it just means the 9800 series will go down in price and it's still a fantastic card.

(TCLN Ryster said @ #2.1)
Yeah, but I bought a BFG GeForce 8800 GTX 768mb OC2 at Christmas and there was no sign of the 9xxx series cards at that time. A few months later they appeared. The 8xxx series cards were the current generation for over a year. But the new 2xx series cars have obsoleted the 9xxx series in only a few months. Why didn't they just add new models to the 9xxx series instead?

The graphic market changes every 5-7 months and it was always like that.
NVidia was using marketing to bring the old-'new' cards under the 9XXX naming scheme. They were practically the 8xxx series.
Now they launched a product with newer core and not an update (like the 9xxx was).

Concluding - the 9xxx series should be under the old 8xxx naming scheme. Remember that NVidia added/changed the naming scheme - now it's like this : first digit will give us the generation, and the second (possibly third too) will give us the performance. Also GTX is reserved only for high-end products.
Since 280 and 260 are second generation (well... NVidia thinks so) and 260 is weaker to 280 it all matches.

(TCLN Ryster said @ #2.1)
Yeah, but I bought a BFG GeForce 8800 GTX 768mb OC2 at Christmas and there was no sign of the 9xxx series cards at that time. A few months later they appeared. The 8xxx series cards were the current generation for over a year. But the new 2xx series cars have obsoleted the 9xxx series in only a few months. Why didn't they just add new models to the 9xxx series instead?

Nowhere near obselete.. a pair of 8800GT's still beat both the 260 and 280 for a lot less cash. You can pick 8800GT's for about 150$ now, which will be 100$ less than a 260 and 350$ less than a 280. and even if you didn't own a nice SLI board it would still be cheaper to sell your current one and buy an SLI board.

What was wrong with the GeForce 9xxx series which was only recently released? Must have been pretty poor to be obsoleted so quickly by this new GeForce 2xx generation.

Nothing was wrong with it, it just wasn't a new GPU architecture. The 9xxx series is still the same GPU from the 8xxx series just with a die shrink and some minor tweaks.

It's no different from what nVidia has done in the past with releasing say the the 8800GTX/GT then releasing a tweaked 8800GTS that runs a bit faster but uses less power etc.


That said, the GT280/260 look good performance wise from the numbers I've seen, but for that price I dunno.

I'll be waiting for some ATi HD4870/4850 reviews.

(GP007 said @ #1.2)
Nothing was wrong with it, it just wasn't a new GPU architecture. The 9xxx series is still the same GPU from the 8xxx series just with a die shrink and some minor tweaks.

It's no different from what nVidia has done in the past with releasing say the the 8800GTX/GT then releasing a tweaked 8800GTS that runs a bit faster but uses less power etc.


That said, the GT280/260 look good performance wise from the numbers I've seen, but for that price I dunno.

I'll be waiting for some ATi HD4870/4850 reviews.

Performance wise for that money, it was a weak improvement. What exactly is this new architecture? It looks like they're just trying to muscle everything now. And no DX 10.1 support? I mean, I know 10.1 isn't really useful at the moment but it would be nice to have it anyway since AMD has had that for a while now.

They just wanted to make money before releasing their next gen cards.

It is sad, but true. The 9 series perform very similar in most games than the latest 8 series. So, there were really no advantages for buying 9 series cards knowing that next gen was arriving.

I have 8800 GTS and i'm very happy with it, the only game that bogs it down its crysis. However, i'm paying close attention to this gen, including those of ATI.

Maybe i upgrade by year's end.