IT168.com is a site located in the Far East, and these guys are known for snatching exclusives from the factory floors. In the case of everybody’s favorite green parts, guys from vga.it168.com managed to get their hands on upcoming GeForce GTX 295 card and ran some preliminary benchmarks. Sadly, IT168.com retracted the story, but it was too late – Internet caught up with the pictures, which I am bringing here for your viewing pleasure.
From what we can see, this card is an interesting combo between GTX260 and 280. For starters, this is nothing else but two GTX260 boards beside the shader part.
- Clock speeds? GTX260 x2.
- Number of ROP units? GTX260 x2.
- Number of Texture units? GTX260 x2.
- Amount of memory? GTX260 x2.
- Number of shaders? Well… GTX280. x2.
So, we have a part that was intended to be doubled GTX260, but Nvidia saw that performance-wise, it may not be enough to overtake the Radeon 4870X2 or the upcoming overclocked versions… thus, the company decided to play it safe and unlock all the 240 shaders that each part posess.
Smart move or not? Well, the launch date was moved from early December to first day of CES, but what can you do. This plays perfectly with the decision of not going with separate 55nm GeForce GTX 270, because of all the 65nm inventory that company currently has. Thus, all those chips will become GTX260-216 and (if any) GTX260-192. However, GTX280 will not induce 55nm chips, but the company is preparing GTX285, part with same clocks as ones on Quadro FX5800. Core is 648 MHz, Shaders are set at 1.48 GHz, while 1GB of memory is set at 2.48 GHz.
GTX 295 is going to sit on top of the lineup, followed by GTX285, remaining stock of GTX280 and abundance of GTX260-216 parts (55nm/65nm combo). Unlike some sites, that claimed that 55nm is a power hog, it is now more than obvious that 55nm GTX260 consumes less power than Radeon 4870 and that is no small feat indeed. After all, RV770 features 999 million transistors, while the GT206 carries whopping 40% more, at 1.4 billion.
Now, if only people in charge of memory controller didn’t made a grave mistake and nuked GDDR5 support for political reasons (back in days, while Nvidia was well… feeling quite egoistic), who knows where the power consumption battle would end. The kicking part is that memory controller people are furious with upper echelons in Graphzilla, because if the company adopted GDDR5 support for the 55nm refresh, GTX295 could feature GDDR5 memory because the traces would be much more simpler to route and there would be no “PCB looking like a maze” issues that every GDDR3-based design has.
GDDR5 memory is the way to go for the future of this industry and even though GTX295 will have excellent performance, green goblins have only themselves to blame what would happen with GT206 + GDDR5. We won’t know the answer before the GT212 (40nm die-shrink) at earliest.
All we know is that we have a heated battle for the market in the $499 range again. But this time, with two dual-GPU parts with more than 1.5 GB of memory each. Well, ATI has the advantage there, 2GB GDDR5 vs. 1.79GB GDDR3.