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Friday, 30 March 2012

NVIDIA nTeresting Newsletter: March 30, 2011

In this Issue:

· GeForce GTX 680 SLI reviews are hitting, and press continue to rave about Kepler.

· GeForce GT 640M continues to make the Acer Aspire Timeline M3 Ultrabook ‘ultra'.

· Trek Bicycle Corp. uses Quadro GPUs to make the lightest bike ever.

GTX 680 x2 (SLI) = Kick Ass²

That equation is really easy to solve.

NVIDIA stormed the gates of gamers all over the globe with our killer new graphics architecture known as Kepler.

"NVIDIA's new Kepler GPU architecture is a resounding success both in terms of their desktop offering and, as we've come to find out here, their mobile graphics solutions as well."

Now a week later SLI reviews are starting to hit.....and guess what!

"After testing two GeForce GTX 680 cards in SLI one day after the official launch, with the first public driver I'm quite impressed."

Tests show SLI is better and more cost effective than Crossfire.

"With GeForce GTX 680 SLI you will be paying less money for a more efficient solution, getting more performance, a superior gameplay experience, and a smoother gaming feel than you will with AMD Radeon HD 7970 CrossFireX."

Getting SLI means you can really crank that stuff up!

"With the tweaks applied and maximum detail turned on we see fantastic 1920x1080 performance from the ZOTAC GTX 680 which outperforms all of the other cards, improving on the GTX 580 by around 40fps in single card mode and averaging over 130fps at 5760x1080 in SLI."

With any multi GPU technology, your set-up is only as good as your drivers. And NVIDIA has a reputation for stellar drivers.

"In all our tests we had no driver issues whatsoever. All games worked straight out of the box."

Besides better performance, better power efficiency, better game support and a better price; GeForce GTX 680 gives you a better, yet hard to describe, intangible. Experience.

"The result of SLI feeling smoother than CrossFireX is that in real-world gameplay, we can get away with a bit lower FPS with SLI, whereas with CFX we have to aim a little higher for it to feel smooth. We do know that SLI performs some kind of driver algorithm to help smooth SLI framerates, and this could be why it feels so much better. Whatever the reason, to us, SLI feels smoother than CrossFireX.

Personally speaking here, when I was playing between GeForce GTX 680 SLI and Radeon HD 7970 CrossFireX, I felt GTX 680 SLI delivered the better experience in every single game. I will make a bold and personal statement; I'd prefer to play games on GTX 680 SLI than I would with Radeon HD 7970 CrossFireX after using both. For me, GTX 680 SLI simply provides a smoother gameplay experience. If I were building a new machine with multi-card in mind, SLI would go in my machine instead of CrossFireX.

With SLI, the more you add, the more you get.

"This is both insane and impressive. - four GeForce GTX 680 cards fitted in a quad-SLI configuration, benchmarked for our pleasure!

Dutch website Hardware.info managed to get four of NVIDIA's new GPUs and decided to see what would happen if they were all fitted into a single machine. What happened was that the system blew away the current benchmark.

The system scored an impressive 21,107 in the 3DMark11 benchmark test, comfortably beating the quad-Crossfire AMD Radeon HD 7970, which scored 20,853, and also aced the 3DMark11 Extreme test with 10,850, once again beating the quad-Crossfire AMD Radeon HD 7970, which only managed a score of 9,989.

As a bonus, Kepler GPUs also overclock like a freakin' beast!

"The GTX 680 offers significant gaming and power enhancements over the last generation of NVIDIA cards and is priced very competitively against the 7970 which it regularly matches or exceeds in gaming. When we overclock both to their limit the GTX 680 provides the best framerates for 1920x1080 gamers, at 5760x1080 the comparison is much closer but no less impressive."

This all adds up to GeForce GTX 680 being the best.

Kelper Puts the "Ultra" in Ultrabooks

The GeForce GTX 680 is our flagship card for desktop. It is killer. Also killer, the four Kepler GPUs introduced for notebooks.

"In early March, two of our editors ventured to sunny San Francisco to attend NVIDIA's 2012 Editors' Day conference, where the company gave us a sneak peek at the GTX 680. But there, they were surprised to see something that's potentially even more of a game-changer: the GeForce 600M Series, a suite of new graphics-processing units (GPUs) for laptops."

Kepler notebooks GPUs offer unprecedented performance and incredible power efficiency to enable exciting new notebook platforms.

"Those NVIDIA GeForce graphics are the real story here: they're the first of NVIDIA's next-generation Kepler laptop GPUs, and this is the first time these graphics have ever been employed on a laptop deemed an ultrabook."

These new GPUs make UltrabooksTM....well....ultra.

"Ultrabooks with graphics this powerful might not be the first choice for PC gamers, but such machines (and their bigger, thicker, more conventional counterparts) have the potential to shake up the gaming-laptop market-and let casual users get a lot more out of the machines they travel with."

With NVIDIA's revolutionary Optimus technology, having that much power does not kill your battery life.

"Thanks to NVIDIA's Optimus technology, which switches automatically between the discrete and integrated GPUs, Acer claims that the M3 will get up to eight hours of battery life. On the LAPTOP Battery Test (Web surfing via Wi-Fi), the M3 lasted 7 hours and 4 minutes. Not only is that two hours better than the mainstream category average, but it's 20 minutes longer than the ultraportable average."

By any measurement the new 600M GPUs are revolutionary with excellent performance per watt, excellent performance per wafer area and excellent overall performance. This raises the bar for notebooks from the UltrabookTM segment all the way up to gaming notebooks. We expect to garner the lion's share of Intel Ivy Bridge notebooks with discrete GPUs.

Trek Goes Quadro

I just bought a Trek Fuel EX 6 from Mellow Johnny's in Austin. I love it. Now I know why.

"With Quadro-powered Dell workstations, the Wisconsin-based bike manufacturer created the lightest downhill mountain bike ever made - in half the time as normally required. The bike's frame tickles the scales at a reported 7.2lbs, with a suggested retail price of $8929.99."

My bike is much, much lower-end than that one, but I like to think that it benefits from the Quadro-created halo of Trek's new racing bike!


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