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Old 02-23-10, 09:06 AM   #37
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Default Re: nVidia unveil at Pax East

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I like how you trash ATI for tactics NV invented. At least they had the courtesy to release benchmarks on the 5870 2-3 weeks before it came out, I guess NV isn't that confident though.
Could be they're confident that based on what they've shown so far at CES people won't buy 5870s.

Could be they feel their feature set is strong enough and ATi's weak enough they won't buy 5870s.

Could be they just gave up on the paper launch strategy after deciding the negative buzz it generates outweighed the positive.

Could be that as the market leader in discrete desktop, by far, for so many years they don't care what ATi does.

Could be they don't want to tip their hand to ATi so they can make adjustments to clock/voltage/hsf on their refresh while NVIDIA is waiting to launch.

Could be something I'm not considering. In any case, it's their business, they didn't have to sell it and then remain number 2, so I guess I'll trust that they know what they're doing.

Not like I could change it anyway.
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Old 02-23-10, 09:32 AM   #38
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Default Re: nVidia unveil at Pax East

So...does this always have to break down to an "ATI vs nVIDIA-fanboi edition" pissing match?

Come on guys, stop it with the trolling. Go outside and get some fresh air or something....
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Old 02-23-10, 09:32 AM   #39
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NVIDIA doesn't.....
Absolutely nothing you said addresses my concerns as a consumer. Nothing.

I appreciate your position, really, so don't try to turn this into a pissing contest between you and I, it isn't and will not be.

I am simply a consumer who refuses to be swayed by talk. Until NV (or other consumers) release numbers I have no way to gauge whether or not buying a Fermi at Pax East will be a good move or not.

NV is requiring anyone who may buy a Fermi at this event to go on faith in the brand, and to an extent, the track record, which is far from spotless.

Not good enough.
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Old 02-23-10, 10:01 AM   #40
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Default Re: nVidia unveil at Pax East

Are you sure about that?
Just because you'll be able to buy it there doesn't mean, that you won't be able to see the reviews before. NDA ends on that day, so I don't think this is a real issue.
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Old 02-23-10, 10:03 AM   #41
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dont get me wrong i love nvidia cards but the wait that we all have had and my expectations have gone from very high to very low now all the things ive (read rumors and so on)arent doing nvidia any good or unlesswot ive been reading is all B******.
well next month isnt that long away now anyway..

NVIDIA and its troubled GeForce 400 series
Today I wanted to write a little 'opinionated' editorial. Typically we do not address rumors and gossip. But an accumulation of things that have been going on over at camp NVIDIA and the Internet leading us to believe things are not as they should be. The rumors are creating a rather negative stigma for NVIDIA.

Last week most of NVIDIA's partner got sampled with the first GeForce 400 series graphics cards, and of course somebody somewhere leaked information towards a person which we'll just call 'Mr C', this friendly little fellah has an unnatural and seriously unhealthy attitude towards NVIDIA, I'm seriously afraid he's gonna stroke out some day. Take a chill pill man, it's just hardware.

With his most recent plot and post however a lot of chatter started on the web with ATI fans attacked NVIDIA fans, the guy is really good stirring up things, yet his claims are often well .. very semi-accurate for sure. What I wanted to do is talk you through what has been happening at NVIDIA (from what we know), where we are and what's going to happen.

So it was what .. roughly summer 2009 when NVIDIA taped out a new product series under family name Fermi. Initially Fermi was supposed to launch alongside Windows 7 back in October 2009, mind you that it was taped out -- add to that 6-8 eight weeks for the first products to get into real production. That makes total sense.

Due to 40nm yield issues (broken chips on a wafer) the initial launch got delayed, with a silent hope of a Christmas release. That didn't happen.

NVIDIA had time though, DX11 is not yet taking off massively, but for DX11 to take and create incentive to developers and end-users one must invest in it, you'll actually have to release DX11 class products sooner than later. It's all about adoption rate.

At CES Fermi very likely was supposed to launch, NVIDIA invited selected press to attend a briefing, that briefing in the end became an GPU architecture deep dive briefing. It was weird to the extent that the press wasn't even allowed to even see the product physically, neither where any details on clocks, TDP, temps shared whatsoever. At that very briefing Guru3D was promised boards in February for review with a launch during CeBIT. Well ..today is the 22nd of February, there are no boards seeded to press.

Last week I had a brief call with our primary NVIDIA contact regarding CeBIT and he didn't even mention Fermi once, when I asked when we could expect samples the word got out, likely during or after CeBIT. So while you'll see GeForce 400 boards shown at CeBIT, we do not expect it to launch next week.

Perhaps there might be a launch in March but we feel (yet do not hope) its going to be a paper launch with a small selection of press seed samples and limited available stock. Last week NVIDIA's CEO made a rather remarkable comment indicating they still need more time, Fermi based products will be available in good volume starting Q2, a financial quarter.

“Q2 [of FY 2011] is going to be the quarter when Fermi is hitting the full stride. It will not just be one Fermi product, there will be a couple of Fermi products to span many different price ranges, but also the Fermi products will span GeForce Quadro and Tesla. So, we are going to be ramping now on Fermi architecture products through Q2 and we are building a lot of it. I am really excited about the upcoming launch of Fermi and I think it will more than offset the seasonality that we usually see in Q2,” said Jen-Hsun Huang, chief executive officer of Nvidia, during the most recent conference call with financial analysts.

Financial Quarters in the industry however end one month later than you and I assume, Q2 for NVIDIA means the start of May 2010.

Here's what we think is going to happen, during March we'll definitely see the launch of GeForce 470 and 480, though with low allocation and volume available until Q2. Once we hit Q2 expect a lot, seriously a lot of derivative DX11 class products for the midrange, entry-level and low-end spectrum as well. Why ? Well NVIDIA is late to the market, real late .. roughly six months ago GeForce 480 and 470 should have been released and the other planned products overlap that timeframe. The summer is going to be busy for NVIDIA, either that or they will be re-scheduling their product releases.

So that's my vision of what is going to happen in the next three months.

Now let's go a little deeper into the issues causing the delays. Initially NVIDIA ran into a can of worms with the A1 revision of GF100 (Fermi), yields have had to be incredible horrible as they very quickly shifted to revision (build) A2 of the ASIC. After revision A2 was out some time passed and TSMC reported that the majority of their 40nm issues had been solved. Good proof of that is that ATI is pushing out many DX11 class product in much diversity and reasonable volume. That means the wafer yields, though likely not very good, where okay enough. So there's something else going on as well next to yield issues. Either a bug slipped in or the thermal package is causing issues resulting in lower than anticipated clock frequencies and perhaps heat related issues.

Last week NVIDIA's board partners finally got samples of Fermi based products. This means a finalized package - with perhaps some clock changes at best. Most of the partners received a GeForce GTX 470. Now here's the difference with the aforementioned website, we know the majority specs and some performance results, however I'm not about to share them, I mean come on ... give NVIDIA some credit here.

What I will tell you is that the clock frequencies on these boards surprised me, the GeForce 470 seems to be clocked at roughly 650 MHz, that's lower than I expected. And that indeed will have an effect on performance. I think it's safe to that the GeForce 470 and 480 will be worthy competitors towards the Radeon HD 5850 and 5870. Will it be a knock-out ? I doubt it very much. But is it important for NVIDIA to deliver a knockout to the competition ? Well they would hope so, but no .. not really, as the current performance levels that ATI for example offers simply are superb already. Being six months late to the market does pose an issue, ATI will already be respinning and binning their upcoming products, clocked higher and they could match NVIDIA in either price or performance.

Whether or not how much faster or slower Fermi / GT100 will be will remain trivial, but it will al depend on pricing. If Fermi is slightly slower, then the prices will be adjusted accordingly. So in the end it will everything will make sense again.

Back to reality. We found out (and verified), surprisingly enough, that the GPU is already at revision A3, that's the third revision of the GPU, the GF100 already has had three builds. So yes, something was wrong, very wrong alongside the initial yield issues. But we know that the products right now are in volume production, will it be many weeks before we see good availability ? Sure it will. Maybe April, or indeed May is where things will start to make a difference. Performance will be very good, however with the clocks I have seen (and only if they are final) I do believe they will not be brilliant though. NVIDIA has many trump cards though, they have an outstanding driver team which will drive performance upwards fast and soon.

And that's where I like to end this little opinionated article. NVIDIA's Fermi is not a what I read somewhere "a sinking ship" or to quote "Hot, buggy and far too slow". I have no doubt it will be a good product series, but I'll agree on this, NVIDIA likely would have wanted to squeeze some more performance out of it as it was likely the most difficult product they have ever gotten to market, it has been fighting them all the way.

In the end as stated we are not sharing juicy details or the performance numbers we have seen. As always, in order to remain objective you judge a product once you actually have had it in your hands to test it. Which is what we intend to do.

In the end I'm not concerned about NVIDIA, but the AIB and AIC partners heavily rely on these new products in already harsh times. And for them this all is and was worrisome. So with that I'd like to close, patience, my friend, is a virtue ... we should all have a little more and base our real opinions on the final product, and not blindly absorb rumors on the web. We do expect a final release late March. But that as well remains a rumor, of course.
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Old 02-23-10, 10:27 AM   #42
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Are you sure about that?
Just because you'll be able to buy it there doesn't mean, that you won't be able to see the reviews before. NDA ends on that day, so I don't think this is a real issue.
Nope, not sure at all. I'm not attacking Rollo's post or info, or Fermi. I'm anxious to upgrade and I personally like to take time to consider information before hand. that's all I'm saying. A few days to read and compare and mull over all available info. That's all.

@ scubes - ahhh text wall!
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Old 02-23-10, 10:57 AM   #43
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Can't wait to see what Nvidia brings to the table. With AMD's refresh not too far out it better be good.
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Old 02-23-10, 01:27 PM   #44
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Nope, not sure at all. I'm not attacking Rollo's post or info, or Fermi. I'm anxious to upgrade and I personally like to take time to consider information before hand. that's all I'm saying. A few days to read and compare and mull over all available info. That's all.

@ scubes - ahhh text wall!
I have no quarrel with you either grey_1, and I can appreciate your frustration waiting fo this launch. (and everyone else's)

A lot of people are comparing this launch to the FX5800 and the HD2900 because it's six months behind the competing launch due to respins, and that it's suspected the cards will run hotter and at higher voltage.

Those things all MAY be true (don't know on heat and voltage) but that is where the similarity ends.

The FX/HD were both much weaker in AA performance than their competitor. I've watched the GTX480 run the FarCry2 demo twice as fast as a GTX285 with AA on. I've seen a PR slide showing how the 4X to 8X MSAA penalty has been cut by a huge percentage. NVIDIA is also launching a new mode with more samples that performs VERY well. So that is different.

The FX/HD launched at performance significantly lower that their competitors, from what I've been told and what I've seen, I don't believe this to be the case with the GTX480. I think it will launch as the market leader. That's a BIG difference.

The FX/HD lacked significant features their competitors had, like usable DX9 performance for the FX and AF angle invariant AF for the HD. The GTX480 has everything the HD 5870 has, and much more in terms of checkbox features.

NVIDIA is launching a better part than the HD5870 on 3/26, they're just launching it half a year plus after the part it competes with. If 3/26 is too long to wait for a better part, you should buy a 5870 now. It's not like they're "bad" cards, they just won't be the "best" cards in a month.

Last- my guess is that NVIDIA withholds clocks and performance to keep ATi in the dark and make them either guess with their refresh, or wait and lose some sales. You would too if you controlled NVIDIA- your responsibility would be to the stockholders.
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Old 02-23-10, 01:52 PM   #45
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Default Re: nVidia unveil at Pax East

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I
The FX/HD launched at performance significantly lower that their competitors, from what I've been told and what I've seen, I don't believe this to be the case with the GTX480. I think it will launch as the market leader. That's a BIG difference....

NVIDIA is launching a better part than the HD5870 on 3/26...

Is there a confirmed release of a dual-GPU Fermi yet? If not, then shouldn't the 480 be considered Nvidia's high-end part and a more relevant comparison made to the 5970, which is ATI's high-end part?

The 5870 is not ATI's high end and is not in the same "market" as the 480. The 480 should sell at a significantly higher price tag than 5870 as well, given that the performance should be better and it was a more expensive part to manufacture.

Given the above, I don't understand your statement about 480 and 5870 being in the same "market."
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Old 02-23-10, 02:05 PM   #46
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I have no quarrel with you either grey_1, and I can appreciate your frustration waiting fo this launch. (and everyone else's)

A lot of people are comparing this launch to the FX5800 and the HD2900 because it's six months behind the competing launch due to respins, and that it's suspected the cards will run hotter and at higher voltage.

Those things all MAY be true (don't know on heat and voltage) but that is where the similarity ends.

The FX/HD were both much weaker in AA performance than their competitor. I've watched the GTX480 run the FarCry2 demo twice as fast as a GTX285 with AA on. I've seen a PR slide showing how the 4X to 8X MSAA penalty has been cut by a huge percentage. NVIDIA is also launching a new mode with more samples that performs VERY well. So that is different.

The FX/HD launched at performance significantly lower that their competitors, from what I've been told and what I've seen, I don't believe this to be the case with the GTX480. I think it will launch as the market leader. That's a BIG difference.

The FX/HD lacked significant features their competitors had, like usable DX9 performance for the FX and AF angle invariant AF for the HD. The GTX480 has everything the HD 5870 has, and much more in terms of checkbox features.

NVIDIA is launching a better part than the HD5870 on 3/26, they're just launching it half a year plus after the part it competes with. If 3/26 is too long to wait for a better part, you should buy a 5870 now. It's not like they're "bad" cards, they just won't be the "best" cards in a month.

Last- my guess is that NVIDIA withholds clocks and performance to keep ATi in the dark and make them either guess with their refresh, or wait and lose some sales. You would too if you controlled NVIDIA- your responsibility would be to the stockholders.

Actually not quite all in fermi is improved over the HD5870,as the best case scenario for Fermi if it managed to hit 750 Mhz clock speeds,the floating point performance is 750 gigaflop second in dual precision math and tops out at 1.5 terraflops for single precision math.


HD 5870 cards are slower at dual precision(about 560 gigaflops),but way faster at single precision math,clocking in at 2.7 terraflops,and it's single precision math that used primarily in gaming scenarios,while dual precision is used for Cuda applications,specifically scientific work that requires the absolute maximum precision in the final result.....Keep in mind though that these are the theoretical maximums for each GPU.


Then there's the texturing abilities,with the HD 5870 using 80 texture units,while fermi seems to be using only 64 texture units,but as we don't know the individual capabilities on each unit in fermi,it's hard to make comparisons,but going on the rumored amount available in fermi and the clocks speed difference(200 Mhz faster for Cypress),ATI's HD5870 has more texturing power than Femi.


Lastly,even Anantech was pissed off in a recent article that clock speeds are still completely unknown,so it's hard to predict performance,and keeping clocks in the dark does very little to intimidate ATI,as they'll ship the refresh parts at the fastest clocks they can while still having good yeilds anyhow,as the point is to make money,not winning over Fermi with refresh parts so highly clocked that they'll have crappy yeilds as a consequence,and may the best win in the end.


Oh and as Xion mentioned,ATI's high end is the HD5970 cards,so double the above stats(1 terraflop dual precision,5 terraflops single precision,160 texture units),and Fermi is also down on memory bandwith too,so they have to be pretty carefull on the pricing of fermi cards here,as if it's close to the HD 5970,no one but the most hardcore Nvidia fan would buy one.
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Old 02-23-10, 02:36 PM   #47
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I have no quarrel with you either grey_1, and I can appreciate your frustration waiting fo this launch. (and everyone else's)

A lot of people are comparing this launch to the FX5800 and the HD2900 because it's six months behind the competing launch due to respins, and that it's suspected the cards will run hotter and at higher voltage.

Those things all MAY be true (don't know on heat and voltage) but that is where the similarity ends.

The FX/HD were both much weaker in AA performance than their competitor. I've watched the GTX480 run the FarCry2 demo twice as fast as a GTX285 with AA on. I've seen a PR slide showing how the 4X to 8X MSAA penalty has been cut by a huge percentage. NVIDIA is also launching a new mode with more samples that performs VERY well. So that is different.

The FX/HD launched at performance significantly lower that their competitors, from what I've been told and what I've seen, I don't believe this to be the case with the GTX480. I think it will launch as the market leader. That's a BIG difference.

The FX/HD lacked significant features their competitors had, like usable DX9 performance for the FX and AF angle invariant AF for the HD. The GTX480 has everything the HD 5870 has, and much more in terms of checkbox features.

NVIDIA is launching a better part than the HD5870 on 3/26, they're just launching it half a year plus after the part it competes with. If 3/26 is too long to wait for a better part, you should buy a 5870 now. It's not like they're "bad" cards, they just won't be the "best" cards in a month.

Last- my guess is that NVIDIA withholds clocks and performance to keep ATi in the dark and make them either guess with their refresh, or wait and lose some sales. You would too if you controlled NVIDIA- your responsibility would be to the stockholders.
Good info Rollo - thank you.

I am simply not as educated as many of you gents WRT the tech, but I do believe NV has had other reasons than all the negative press - I would personally love to see a repeat of the 'WoW' factor we saw with the 8800GTX - would absolutely love it.

Given my lack of knowledge though...it's always best to give you guys time to get good info out there for guys like me to chew on.

That said...when I mentioned Pax to the wife last night, she asked if I would like to go..and snag a card if available.

Again, that's some of the best info I've seen to date - Thanks!
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Old 02-23-10, 02:57 PM   #48
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Default Re: nVidia unveil at Pax East

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Actually not quite all in fermi is improved over the HD5870,as the best case scenario for Fermi if it managed to hit 750 Mhz clock speeds,the floating point performance is 750 gigaflop second in dual precision math and tops out at 1.5 terraflops for single precision math.


HD 5870 cards are slower at dual precision(about 560 gigaflops),but way faster at single precision math,clocking in at 2.7 terraflops,and it's single precision math that used primarily in gaming scenarios,while dual precision is used for Cuda applications,specifically scientific work that requires the absolute maximum precision in the final result.....Keep in mind though that these are the theoretical maximums for each GPU.


Then there's the texturing abilities,with the HD 5870 using 80 texture units,while fermi seems to be using only 64 texture units,but as we don't know the individual capabilities on each unit in fermi,it's hard to make comparisons,but going on the rumored amount available in fermi and the clocks speed difference(200 Mhz faster for Cypress),ATI's HD5870 has more texturing power than Femi.


Lastly,even Anantech was pissed off in a recent article that clock speeds are still completely unknown,so it's hard to predict performance,and keeping clocks in the dark does very little to intimidate ATI,as they'll ship the refresh parts at the fastest clocks they can while still having good yeilds anyhow,as the point is to make money,not winning over Fermi with refresh parts so highly clocked that they'll have crappy yeilds as a consequence,and may the best win in the end.


Oh and as Xion mentioned,ATI's high end is the HD5970 cards,so double the above stats(1 terraflop dual precision,5 terraflops single precision,160 texture units),and Fermi is also down on memory bandwith too,so they have to be pretty carefull on the pricing of fermi cards here,as if it's close to the HD 5970,no one but the most hardcore Nvidia fan would buy one.
It'll be interesting as well to see refresh cards from ATi, even if Fermi is 60% faster in tesselation, since the tesselator is a seperate unit in the 5000 series ATi could upgrade the tesselator without affecting anything else on die....lots of possibilities for both nV and AMD....

I'm just as excited for refresh cards as for Fermi's release....
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