Originally Posted by Viral
We don't know the performance or actual power draw yet so it's a bit soon to say that they are inefficient. Fermi was inefficient on perf/trans and perf/watt compared to Cypress/NI for gaming yes, but much of the design was designed for GPGPU. Now that both are strong in this area a real comparison can be made. There's also the common occurrence of that last 10-5% performance costing much more in transistors and power use - if the top end Kepler does use up to 300w, but performs 20-40% faster than Tahiti, I don't think that's really THAT unreasonable. If it's just 5-15% again, that's not worth it for me.
It's true that we don't know enough yet; that's why I said we don't have "conclusive" data in reference to the new lineup.
What I was speaking to was past history and, more specifically, the past 3 generations of cards. For the past 3 gens, Nvidia has really lagged behind when it comes to efficiency. Their cards have been fast at the cost of consuming a lot more power than ATI's. When you're trying to increase performance, that envelope will run out unless you figure out a way, like ATI has, to increase efficiency within your architecture. Extra transistors come at a cost.
My feeling is that in the end they will figure it out but it may take them some time to get their next high end out there.. like in the latter part of this year.