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October Newsletter - 10/25/12 @ 10:54 am - By: MikeC - Source: Email
Wanted to remind visitors that NVIDIA offers a monthly newsletter that you can subscribe to here. Here are highlights from the October, 2012 newsletter.

SEE HOW THE NEW GEFORCE GTX 650 Ti ROUNDS OUT THE KEPLER FAMILY

NVIDIA’s latest GPU is 40% faster than the GeForce GTX 650, yet aggressively priced at $149.

GET ASSASSIN'S CREED III FREE WHEN YOU BUY A QUALIFYING GEFORCE GTX 650 Ti

Experience the thrill of battle while you hunt your enemies across stunning landscapes in the first DirectX 11 Assassin's Creed game. Get the card, get the game FREE*.

* Offer valid on select SKUs and at select resellers, while supplies last.

DOWNLOAD THE NEW GEFORCE 310.33 BETA DRIVERS

The new GeForce 310.33 beta drivers boost performance by up to 11% in games like Batman: Arkham City and The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim, include new and updated SLI profiles for the latest titles, and enhance half a dozen games with immersive NVIDIA Control Panel Ambient Occlusion effects.

DOUBLE YOUR HORSEPOWER—AND YOUR BATTERY LIFE

Falcon Northwest just launched new DRX laptops—powered by TWO GeForce GTX 680Ms in SLI! The new DRX is three pounds lighter than the last version, but gives you more than twice the battery life!

DOMINATE YOUR GAME-PLAY—NOT YOUR BANK ACCOUNT

Digital Storm's Bolt packs massive gaming power into an incredibly slim 3.6" slim tower design. From quad core CPUs overclocked to 4.6GHz to high end video cards such as the GTX 680, the Bolt has everything you need to lay waste to even the most demanding games. The best part, it starts at $999.

ENTER FOR A CHANCE TO WIN A HAWKEN BETA KEY

Register to win a key for the NVIDIA Hawken closed beta weekend, starting October 26th.

DISCOVER THREE AWESOME TEGRA GAMES FOR ANDROID!

Summer has come and gone, but the sun never sets on awesome games for those of us on Team Tegra. Community Manager, Will Park, shares three of the games that we couldn't put down this summer.

GET BLAZING QUAD–CORE PERFORMANCE, POWERED BY TEGRA 3

HTC's best-rated Android phone looks, sounds, and feels great, and comes with 64 GB of internal storage. Best of all, it's the first phone to be powered by the NVIDIA Tegra 3 mobile processor, so you get 1.7 GHz speeds and 4-PLUS-1 quad-core processing power with a 5th battery-saver core.

SEE HOW NVIDIA MAXIMUS CAN MEAN LESS WAITING AND MORE FAMILY TIME

Steve Taylor, Senior Creative Art Director of Digital Spatula, describes how NVIDIA Maximus technology empowers him to do other things with his time besides waiting for images to render. Discover what NVIDIA Maximus can do for you and your clients.

UPGRADE TO NEW 27" 3D-READY MONITORS WITH 144 HZ SUPPORT

Unlock ultra-high frame rates, shorten input lag, and reduce motion blur for natural movement and a competitive advantage in your FPS, Sim, or RTS games. The ASUS VG278HE lets you do it all, and is even NVIDIA 3D Vision-ready.

SEE HOW THREE NVIDIANS GIVE BACK TO THEIR COMMUNITIES

Whether volunteering in company-sponsored events like Project Inspire and back-to-school activities, or through their personal efforts, NVIDIA employees are passionate about giving back to their communities.


Holiday GeForce Roundup - 9/02/12 @ 2:34 pm - By: MikeC - Source: Google Reader
GeForce making the news headlines this lazy Sunday and Monday:


Radeon HD 7970 GHz - 6/22/12 @ 3:03 am - By: MikeC - Source: Google Reader
Tom's Hardware reviews the AMD Radeon HD 7970 GHz Edition - Give Me Back That Crown.

AMD's driver team deserves to take this weekend off. Its beta Catalyst 12.7 build does stellar things to the performance of several games in our benchmark suite. No longer is Nvidia's GeForce GTX 670 faster than the Radeon HD 7970. And, in fact, these new drivers are largely responsible for the Radeon HD 7970 GHz Edition card outmaneuvering GeForce GTX 680 in most of the tests we ran.

Suddenly, the vanilla Radeon HD 7970 looks a lot more attractive priced between $460 and $480. So, where does that leave this new GHz Edition card?

Rather than simply replacing the original Radeon HD 7970, AMD sees its 1000+ MHz model coexisting. Prices are going to start at $500, the company says, and we're assuming that covers the reference-class board. Cards with aftermarket cooling will almost certainly cost more. Expect to start seeing availability next week, with broader supply rolling in the week after.

Again, AMD's factory cooler is disturbingly loud, so avoid that. But if board partners can tack on more interesting solutions, like the ones we saw in our Radeon HD 7950 round-up, and still manage to keep prices close to $500, the Radeon HD 7970 GHz Edition will take its place in front of the GeForce GTX 680.

Here's the rub, though. In a world without GeForce GTX 670, Nvidia’s 680 might still be on our radar, and we'd have a proper grudge match on our hands in the high-end space. That's simply not the case anymore, though. Today, there are other high-end GPUs that offer nearly as much performance at much more attractive prices, dissuading us from either company’s single-GPU flagship.

We already know that GeForce GTX 670 performs within a few percentage points of 680, and for $100 less. Moreover, once Catalyst 12.7 goes public and puts the older 7970 in the same league as GeForce GTX 680, it’d simply make more sense to save the $50 and do a little overclocking of your own. Shoot, I have two retail 7970s here that both hit the core frequency limiter in Overdrive at 1125 MHz, and have no troubling achieving the same 1500 MHz memory settings as the GHz Edition card.

There's no guarantee that 7970s will continue overclocking as well as they have been, particularly now that AMD is saving the top-binned ASICs for this new model. However, we'd rather save some money and come close. For that reason, the original Radeon HD 7970 and GeForce GTX 670 remain our favorite gaming graphics cards.

Shop for GeForce GTX and Radeon HD graphics cards at Newegg!


NVIDIA In The News - 6/09/12 @ 11:35 am - By: MikeC - Source: Email
This past week, NVIDIA was making news headlines at two major tradeshows, E3 and Computex. Highlights include:
  • GeForce GRID
  • World's first Windows RT consumer device
  • World's fastest notebook GPU
  • Ultrabooks with GeForce GPUs
Two big trade shows happened this week, one in Los Angeles, California and one in Taipei, Taiwan.

ELECTRONIC ENTERTAINMENT EXPO (E3)

Cloud Gaming

E3 was held in LA this week and was gaming focused. With the lack of new consoles announced, NVIDIA made news with GeForce GRID. They partnered with Samsung and Giakai for a demo of the mech game Hawken.

"We were brought over to the Samsung Smart TV (2012 Samsung LED 7000 Series) that was connected to the internet with an Ethernet cable and loaded with Gaikai's online gaming app that is needed for access to the NVIDIA GeForce GRID cloud gaming platform. A few seconds later we were playing Meteor Entertainment's new mech warrior game Hawken from a data center about 10 miles away in the heart of LA. Keep in mind we were doing this with just a TV and the remote control as the hardware running the game was miles away."

Launched two weeks ago at the GPU Technology conference, GeForce GRID allows game providers like Gaikai to stream the latest, most sophisticated games to any connected devices like smartphones, tablets, TVs and more. With GeForce GRID, powerful GPUs can reside in a data center miles away, but fast streaming technology reduces server latency to as little as 10 milliseconds, so gamers can still enjoy lightning-fast play wherever they are.

New Tegra Games

NVIDIA also debuted five brand-new optimized mobile games for TegraZone, including Puddle THD, Demons' Score THD, Bounty Arms, Heroes Call, and Dead Trigger, the latest from Madfinger Games, developers of the popular Shadowgun THD title. These new titles take advantage of Tegra 3's unique 4-PLUS-1 quad core architecture to deliver stunning graphics and buttery-smooth game play.

COMPUTEX

First with Windows RT

Computex was held in Taipei and mobile computing was the key focus there. NVIDIA and Asus took the opportunity to show off the world's first Windows RT consumer device, the Asus Tablet 600 powered by Tegra 3. It shows that Microsoft has made leaps and bounds in developing the Windows RT edition.

"But today, NVIDIA showed off the Tablet 600's key strengths and its ability to run Windows 8 RT, the ARM version of Windows 8, with great aplomb."

The fact that Microsoft, Asus, and NVIDIA can now showcase the world's first Windows RT consumer device shows just how close we are to seeing Tegra-powered Windows devices on store shelves.

"Questions still remain around Windows RT, and indeed we were expecting to see a greater showing from manufacturers this week at Computex. However, if our brief experience with the Asus Tablet 600 (and NVIDIA's word) is anything to go by, it looks likely to provide a smooth, efficient mobile experience without much in the way of compromise - and one very different to both iOS and Android."

It was good enough to grab a Best of Show Award.

"The first Windows 8 tablet powered by NVIDIA's quad-core Tegra 3 CPU, the ASUS Tablet 600 promises more than 10 hours of endurance by itself and 18 hours when attached to its keyboard dock. But with the combination of Tegra 3 and Microsoft's ARM-enabled Windows 8 RT OS, long endurance is just the beginning. In a brief demonstration, this elegantly designed hybrid zoomed through Windows 8's Metro UI, flipping through photos and apps like a Vegas dealer shuffling cards. Plus, the 10.1-inch, 600-nit display is one of the brightest and most colorful we've seen."

Others were not so ready:

"Playback of a 1080p video demo was less successful -- it stuttered to a halt after 20 seconds even though it was playing from local storage. I also had to repeat some touch gestures to get a response, but that could be because I'm new to the Metro interface. A Qualcomm representative noted it was a reference unit and said there was still some optimization work to do between the hardware and software."

Check out the videos on The Verge, Laptop Magazine or NetBook News.

World's Fastest Notebook GPU

NVIDIA also announced the GeForce GTX 680M GPU, their new flagship notebook GPU. GeForce GTX 680M is the fastest, most advanced gaming notebook GPU ever built. It offers better 3D with NVIDIA 3D Vision 2 technology; better performance and killer battery life when paired with NVIDIA Optimus technology.

"Kepler is coming to laptops with NVIDIA's new GeForce GTX 680M, bringing unparalleled gaming performance to notebooks."

How fast is it?

"The only games that don't see a >40% increase are Civilization V (which has proven to be CPU limited in the past) and Street Fighter IV (which is running at >120FPS on both GPUs already). There are a few titles where we even see nearly a doubling of performance. We don't have raw numbers, but NVIDIA is also claiming around a 15-20% average performance advantage over AMD's Radeon 7970M—hopefully we'll be able to do our own head-to-head in the near future.

Overall, using NVIDIA's own numbers it looks like GTX 680M ought to be around 50% faster than GTX 580M. If that doesn't seem like much, consider that the difference between GTX 480M and GTX 580M was only around 20% (according to NVIDIA and using 3DMark11). A 50% increase in mobile graphics performance within the same power envelope is a huge step; if Kepler manages to reduce power use at all then it will be an even bigger jump. Put another way, a single GTX 680M in the above games using NVIDIA's own results ends up offering 86% of the performance of GTX 580M SLI, and it will definitely use a lot less power and have fewer headaches than mobile SLI."

But it is not just about speed with the GeForce GTX 680M, you also get a complete arsenal of gaming technology.

"Kelper offers better performance and lower power consumption. The mobile GTX680M features all the functions available in the desktop Kepler GPUs including TXAA (a temporal anti-aliasing algorithm), adaptive vsync and DirectX 11. The GTX 680M also supports the Optimus technology which turns on the integrated Intel HD4000 graphics chip for a low graphics load and goes back to the Kepler when games or graphics apps are launched."

Get yours soon.

"Thanks to Optimus technology, the GeForce GTX 680M is optimized for power efficiency. Some of the first notebooks with the GeForce GTX 680M are Alienware M17x, M18x and MSI GT70."

GeForce Ultrabooks

But Kepler is not just for gaming notebooks. With the launch of Intel's dual core Ivy Bridge CPUs comes an influx of new Ultrabooks powered by GeForce GPUs. GeForce GPUs put the 'Ultra' in ultrabook, giving you ultra-performance with no compromises.

"At Computex 2012, several more Ultrabooks sporting discrete GPUs have shown up, including an apparently updated version of the M3. Interestingly—or perhaps not?—we have yet to see any Ultrabooks sporting AMD discrete GPUs; if you happen to know of any, drop me a note! Here’s the short list of known specs for the upcoming 'gaming' Ultrabooks."

NVIDIA has a wide variety of GPUs which will be viable for the ultrabook platform. Ultrabooks have already been announced with GeForce GT 650M, GeForce GT 640M, GeForce GT 630M and GeForce GT 620M GPUs.


NVIDIA In The News - 6/05/12 @ 3:41 am - By: MikeC - Source: Google Reader
Two reports this morning from NVIDIA's nTerset blog:Press Release - NVIDIA Brings Its Next-Gen Kepler Architecture to the Top of Its GeForce Notebook GPU Lineup

Computex 2012 and E3 2012 -- NVIDIA today brings its next-generation NVIDIA® Kepler™ graphics architecture to the top of the GeForce notebook GPU lineup, with the launch of the NVIDIA GeForce GTX 680M.

The fastest, most advanced1 gaming notebook GPU ever built, the GTX 680M GPU delivers unprecedented performance, incredible power efficiency and the world's most advanced gaming technology.

"The GeForce GTX 680M is the fastest mobile GPU ever, but it's more than just a speed king," said Rene Haas, vice president and general manager of the notebook business unit at NVIDIA. "It also offers an entire arsenal of next-gen gaming technology, along with Optimus technology for extended battery life."

In addition, Tom's Hardware has posted a review of the GeForce GT 640 from Afox.

Afox sent us its rendition of the new GeForce GT 640, based on Nvidia's GK107 GPU. This one slots in under the existing GeForce GTS 450 to do battle with AMD's Radeon HD 6670. Does the Kepler architecture deliver, or is a $100 price target too high?

Related stories from the following web sites:


Linux Graphics Shootout - 6/04/12 @ 7:16 am - By: MikeC - Source: Google Reader
Curious about the performace of the latest high-end Graphics Processing Units (GPUs) under Ubuntu? If so, check out Phoronix as they compare the Radeon HD 7950 and GeForce GTX 680 using proprietary graphics drivers.

Should you be looking towards purchasing a new high-end graphics card from AMD or NVIDIA, here are some updated benchmarks of the AMD Radeon HD 7950 and NVIDIA GeForce GTX 680 when both graphics cards were tested under Ubuntu 12.04 with their proprietary Linux graphics drivers.


TechReport 690 Review - 5/09/12 @ 1:12 am - By: MikeC - Source: Google Reader
The TechReport has published their review of NVIDIA's GeForce GTX 690. I'm a fan of Scott Wasson and have always relied on his benchmark results to veryify my own and, for the most part, we've always been spot on.

Well, now we have some performance numbers for the GeForce GTX 690. How correct they are, we're not entirely sure. I will say this: regardless of the fact that we've not accounted for the potentially positive effects of frame metering, the GeForce GTX 690 looks to be the fastest overall graphics card on the planet. The GTX 690 even does well in our latency-sensitive metrics.

Although it's rarely twice as fast as a GeForce GTX 680 in terms of 99th percentile frame times, the GTX 690's overall frame latency picture, as measured in Fraps, is generally superior to the GTX 680 by a nice margin. The GTX 690 also does a nice job of minimizing those painful instances of long-latency frames, improving on the performance of the GTX 680 in that regard in solid fashion.

If you're concerned about mirco stuttering under a multi-GPU configuration, you should read their review.


GTX 690 Conference Call - 5/01/12 @ 5:21 am - By: MikeC - Source: NVIDIA
The following notes are from NVIDIA's conference call with Tom Peterson and Bryan Del Rizzo, which took place yesterday. The notes are based on the audio portion of a presentation for the GeForce GTX 690.

First and foremost, we congratulated NVIDIA on the GeForce GTX 690 - the "Rolls Royce" of Graphics Processing Units (GPUs).

  • Benchmarks will begin to appear at your favorite web sites very, very soon.

  • Performance is expected to be "extremely close" to that of the GeForce GTX 680 in 2-way SLI.

  • Absolutely the best GPU that NVIDIA has delivered.

  • Records were shattered for the time, effort and money that were invested in the GeForce GTX 690.

  • No plastic parts.

  • Never before used, albeit expensive, materials are part of the GeForce GTX 690 - glossy look, cast aluminum and magnesium.

  • Magnesium injected GPU and relevant connections provide LED reporting.

  • Clear, scratch-resistant polycarbonate window.

  • Nickel-plated vapor chamber.

  • Thicker copper used to lower resistance of circuit board traces.

  • Low profile device.

  • Ridges cut in baseplate provide greater control of airflow and turbulence.

  • First time ever SLI scales 100% - GPUs were always thermally challenged, but not the GeForce GTX 690.

  • Clock speeds take advantage of the GPU Boost feature.

  • "A beast compared to the competition" (Tom Peterson) with a 6 to 9 month head start.

  • Most power efficient GPU per watt (PPW).

  • Dampening materials for acoustics make the GeForce GTX 690 "quieter" than the GeForce GTX 680 in 2-way SLI.

  • A 915MHz default GPU clock speed increases to over 1GHz with GPU Boost.

  • Designed for overclocking as GPU clock speed approaches 1300Mhz.

  • Each GPU operates independently. One shuts off completely and the other enters a low-power state as needed (for example, 2D Windows GIU operations).

  • Absolutely the best performance and acoustics.

  • Hard launch!

  • The GeForce GTX 680 is in short supply due to high demand. NVIDIA is making sure that as many GPUs as possible are being manufactured.

  • Same voltage as the GeForce GTX 680, but voltage varies based on GPU frequency.

  • Powers up to three 2560x1600 monitors running at 120Hz.

  • More exciting products and bleeding-edge services are forthcoming...
Want more info? Check out Meet GeForce GTX 690: The Ultimate Graphics Card at GeForce.com.

Update: Tom Peterson commented on micro stutter during the conference call. Looking over my notes, I see two comments which go something like "the declining quality of those frame rates" and "more and more time not connected to the frame rate."

So yes, NVIDIA has worked to reduce or eliminate micro-stutter.


Performance Perfected - 4/29/12 @ 10:34 am - By: MikeC - Source: Browsing
Quoted from from GeForce.com. Click the headline for more!

April 28th, 2012

By James Wang

When NVIDIA set out to build the Kepler GPU architecture more than four years ago, our primary focus was power efficiency. We found that processors were increasingly being limited by the amount of power they could consume and dissipate. The only way to improve performance was to be able to do more work with the same amount of power.

That was our focus with Kepler, and when the GeForce GTX 680 launched last month, reviewers praised not only its record-setting performance, but also its incredible power efficiency.

Pop quiz. What mechanism is the GeForce GTX 690 positioned on?

Pop quiz. What mechanism is the GeForce GTX 690 positioned on?

External view and features.

Internal view and features.

GeForce GTX 690 technologies.


NVIDIA In The News - 4/20/12 @ 1:10 pm - By: MikeC - Source: Email
For your Friday afternoon reading pleasure, this weeks installment of "NVIDIA In The News" contains the following highlights:
  • More GeForce goodness is on the horizon!

  • GeForce GTX 680 and NVIDIA's new drivers take the wide screen gaming crown.

  • GeForce GTX 680 with adaptive v-sync makes gaming smoother.
  • Adobe CS6’s support for NVIDIA Quadro and Tesla professional GPUs combine for real time editing of a cool music video
  • GeForce 600M and Ivy Bridge prove a killer combo for notebooks.
GeForce Facebook Page is Sneaky

The tech world is buzzing about a little teaser NVIDIA put up on the GeForce Facebook page. It was just a pic and the words "It's coming." That is all it took.

"And with this picture they've just made the fine people at AMD **** themselves," one of the commenters muses.

Post your best guess on NVIDIA's GeForce Facebook page!

Kepler Goes Wide

One of the cool new features of the GeForce GTX 680 introduced was surround gaming. NVIDIA 3D Vision Surround expands your field of view across three monitors so you can game at the staggering resolution of 5760x1080. The new Kepler architecture brings exciting improvement to 3D Vision Surround, such as the ability to run 3D Vision Surround off a single graphics card!

Wide Screen Gaming is a website devoted solely to, well, the wide screen gaming experience that three monitors provides. Here's what they say:

"With the update to the NVIDIA Surround drivers, I can whole-heartedly recommend the NVIDIA setup as the best system of the lot. It has the least flaws by far, and now that you can even use it on a single card (such as the GTX680), it will be even more appealing to people. Put it this way - I made the effort to move from Eyefinity to NVIDIA Surround for my everyday rig at the conclusion of writing this article."

Another convert to Team Green!!!

Kepler Goes Smooth

Consumers desire Kepler because it's powerful AND efficient...

"The good news is that focusing on energy efficiency hasn't cost NVIDIA the performance crown."

Another cool feature NVIDIA introduced with the Kepler-based GeForce GTX 680 is adaptive Vsync. Adaptive Vsync determines the best balance between the smoother performance of having vertical synchronization disabled and the artifact-free gaming of enabling Vsync.

"With Adaptive VSync turned on, the feeling of the game felt smoother compared to regular VSync turned on. The performance felt much like the game felt with VSync turned off. This is the kind of technology we like to see which has improved the innate nature of the gameplay experience."

Another technology issue that was solved by NVIDIA. And with their excellent driver program, every owner of an NVIDIA-based graphics card wins!

"We like the fact that this technology is not limited to the GeForce GTX 680 video card and family, but should work on previous generation video cards as well. Just make sure you have the latest 300 series driver installed. Kudos to NVIDIA for adding Adaptive VSync technology to improve the gameplay experience. It's good to finally see VSync's shortcomings tackled by NVIDIA."

Adobe + NVIDIA = Real Time Edits

Ever wonder how those hip music videos get all those cool effects? Many are created using the Adobe Creative Suite. With the pending release of Adobe Creative Suite 6 Production Premium creative pros can bring their vision to life as fast as possible, without having to trade off quality for speed and interactivity. That's because Adobe CS6 has support for NVIDIA Quadro and Tesla professional GPUs.

So what? So motion graphics that would take hours to create can now be done in minutes. Effects that used to render a few frames per second now run at full speed. Adobe After Effects CS6, Adobe Premiere Pro CS6, Adobe SpeedGrade CS6, or Photoshop CS6, faster editing is now a reality! See it in action in this "making of video" and see the end result in this Heavy Hand music video featuring NVIDIA's Andrew Coonrad on guitar.

GeForce 600M + Ivy Bridge = Notebook Bliss

Intel is yet to launch Ivy Bridge, but OEMs are so excited about their new systems that can't wait to tell the world, as evidenced by recent announcements of GeForce 600M and Ivy Bridge-based systems from Toshiba and Alienware.

The 600M GPUs were built from the ground up for incredible performance and power efficiency. 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 Ultrabook segment all the way up to gaming notebooks. NVIDIA expects to garner the lion's share of Intel Ivy Bridge notebooks with discrete GPUs.

Over and out! It's time for some serious gaming.


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