NVidia GeForce GTX 680 Launched

NVidia has launched the GeForce GTX 680 today. Featuring a PCI-Express 3.0 bus interface, and supporting DirectX 11.1 and 4K displays, initial reviews show this to be the most powerful graphics card in the market today. It is also the more power efficient than other competing cards (including the Radeon HD 7970), with a TDP of a mere 195W.

The cards have 1536 CUDA cores, triple what was available in the GeForce GTX 580, and 128 Texture Units, double those in the equivalent Fermi card. With a graphics and shader clock of 1006 MHz (stock) - 1058 MHz (Boosted), more than 25% faster than GTX 580, and 1502 MHz memory clock (6008 MHz effective, almost 50% faster than GTX 580), it's easy to see that it is a more powerful card than the previous generation offered. There is 2 GB memory, with a 256-bit bandwidth (GTX 580 had 1536 MB of 384-bit memory in the reference design).

We can see from the above that the memory bandwidth is roughly the same as the GTX 580, with what looks to be a more powerful graphics core. Most reviews confirm that a stock GTX 680 outperforms a stock Radeon HD 7970 by a small amount in pretty much all tests (benchmarks and games alike).

In 3DMark 11, GeForce GTX 680 outperforms Radeon HD 7970 by approx 16%. Most gaming tests that we have seen show similar scores, although the HD 7970 does outperform GTX 680 in a small number of game reviews. On the whole, reviews indicate that the GTX 680 is a good choice for a new buyer, with a starting price of around $499 for reference design cards. The cards are available for purchase at most big retailers from today.

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