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It looks like our sources were spot on yesterday when we heard that the new GTX 680 will feature two 6-pin PCI-Express connectors and have a TDP of around 200W (190W to be precise). When combined with 1536 shader units, 2GB of GDDR5 memory clocked at 6GHz and, according to what we heard, a very high GPU clock, it comes as no surprise that Nvidia is claiming higher performance per Watt for its upcoming GTX 680.
This is a big win for Nvidia as we aren't used to hearing performance per Watt from Nvidia and now it appears that the tide has turned. The performance of the GTX 680 is somewhere around Radeon HD 7970 as it wins in some games and benchmarks and loses in others. Of course, these are all results that came from Nvidia so we'll hold our judgement until we see some reviews.
As noted before, the card is based on Nvidia 28nm GK104 Kepler chip that is around 300mm² in size.
The bad part of the story is that our sources were again spot on with the US $549 price tag. Nvidia has a card with similar performance and better TDP so the US $549 price tag isn't really a surprise. We guess that Nvidia has additional maneuvering room when it comes to price and we just need to wait and see if AMD is going to bite down and head into a new round of price wars.
Oh me wants it...!
Apparenty these cards are gonna be very limited when they are to be released on March 22nd/23rd, but I'm gonna be hovering over my F5 Key and try to score one. Currently I have the GTX 580 that destroys just about every title out there, but in many games and especially MMOs, it can struggle a bit in cities when there are tons of players around. Usually it only drops as low as around 30-35ish FPS which is still fairly good considering I run my games on ultra settings with 8-16x AA, sometimes 32x CSAA forced through the nVidia control panel. Plus many other forced settings.
And with the massive WvWvW battles with GW2 this summer, I want the best experience with 50-60+ FPS while there are hundreds of players on screen...heh
Anyway, as you can see from the benchmarks, the GTX 680 is a fair bit better than the GTX 580, and considering that the 580 just had a price reduction this past week, I might as well sell it off sooner rather then later, while it still has a decent value. Ultimately I want whatever nVidia has planned with their GK 110 chip coming later this fall/winter, will probably be named the GTX 780 or whatnot, but by then the 580 would probably drop in price again, plus I hope we're running around Tyria and the Mists by then.
Anyway, I'm excited!