*DISCLAIMER* Please keep in mind that this is all speculation on my part, pieced together by what I have read/heard via industry news as well as what I have experienced in the industry over the years...
Originally Posted by Vanzagar
Last I heard through the rumour mill was that the GTX280 was going to see a refresh by the end of sept, maybe called the GTX280+, anyone have any more info/estimates on this?
Yea, it will basically have a die shrink from 65 to 55nm, allowing for slightly higher stock clocks and max over-clocks as well as lower overall temps and power draw. Exactly what the stock clocks will be is pure speculation at this point, so I won’t bother quoting heresy off of various online sites.
We will also likely see an increase in the MSRP with the "+" version, akin to the 9800GTX+. This will probably be ~ 30-50 USD over the MSRP for the standard version. Of course, this may also push down the cost of the older model 260 & 280GTX, which is good news to people who don’t care about the die shrink factor.
Then you also have the rumor that Nvidia will be adding GDDR5 VRAM to the 260/280GTX boards. I doubt this will be on the + version, but then again this is just my opinion. I would assume that IF Nvidia decides to up the VRAM on the current 200GTX boards (they may be saving this for their next generation GFX card), it will be listed as something more then just a 260/280GTX+ to further differentiate them between the GDDR3 versions. I'm thinking of something like "260/280-Ultra". This will undoubtedly add to the cost by quite a bit, so there will most likely also be other changes. This is where a new dual GPU/single PCB set up may step in; Read: enter the "260/280GX2"... or something of the sort.
I could see Nvidia releasing a dual 55nm GPU, single PCB card, using the 200GTX graphics processors, as well as the faster GDDR5 VRAM. With a single step, they would most likely put the kibosh on ATI's current power lead in the GFX card department. I can also see them being able to do this while keeping the MSRP at or very near that of the HD4870X2, since the vast majority of the cost has already been addressed by Nvidia in regards to the 512-bit memory bandwidth.
And that gives me wood. Thinking of a dual 55nm GPU/single PCB 260 or 280GTX with 512-bit GDDR5 VRAM is quite the graphics giant! And with an MSRP of under $600 USD, that is one card I would be more then willing to splurge on.