Sunday, September 14th 2014

NVIDIA Readies GeForce GTX 960

It looks like GeForce GTX 980 and GTX 970 won't be the only Maxwell-based graphics cards NVIDIA plans to launch within the next 30 days. The company is readying a third SKU based on the chip, the GeForce GTX 960. The company's next sub-$300 graphics card, the GTX 960 will be launched some time in mid to late-October, 2014. The company's GTX 970 and GTX 980 will come out later this week (19th September), timed with the Game24 event. There's no word on the exact specs of the GTX 960.


Source: Hermitage Akihabara
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27 Comments on NVIDIA Readies GeForce GTX 960

#1
The Von Matrices
Based upon its price, I assume this GTX 960 is intended to compete with AMD's R9 285X or potentially with the R9 290?
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#2
btarunr
Editor & Senior Moderator
The Von Matrices said:
Based upon its price, I assume this GTX 960 is intended to compete with AMD's R9 285X or potentially with the R9 290?
$300 is not its price. The category is sub-$300 ($199-$299). If it could beat R9 280X, I'd be impressed.
Posted on Reply
#3
The Von Matrices
btarunr said:
$300 is not its price. The category is sub-$300 ($199-$299). If it could beat R9 280X, I'd be impressed.
Okay, fair enough point. I'll just have to wait for more details to leak.
Posted on Reply
#4
NC37
GXX04 chipset or it doesn't count as a X60!
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#5
HumanSmoke
The Von Matrices said:
Based upon its price, I assume this GTX 960 is intended to compete with AMD's R9 285X or potentially with the R9 290?
Seems likely. It's almost as if the GTX 770's price cut has made allowed the 960 to slip into the product stack in it's place while the 770 shuffles off its mortal coil.
btarunr said:
$300 is not its price. The category is sub-$300 ($199-$299). If it could beat R9 280X, I'd be impressed.
If the card features the GM 204 of the GTX 980/970 then it will come down to how much of a salvage part it is. If the 980/970 sit around 780Ti/780 levels (although latest 3DMark numbers might suggest you'd need a decent overclock to achieve the former), you'd think that disabling a second SMM might still make it competitive with the 280X, which is after all, barely a 7970GE.
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#6
james888
I am curious what the Perf/Watt would be for the 960 in comparison to a 7970. The 750ti is really efficient, so I am assuming the rest of maxwell will be reasonable efficient too.
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#7
RejZoR
I just don't get it what's the point in releasing cards with performance of what, 2 years ago? I mean like wtf?! We could buy all this ages ago and today when you want to UPGRADE your card from those ages ago, you get the same thing under new name. With "improved power consumption". Like i give a F. Give me a card with more performance than i already have. You don't buy a freakin Ferrari to worry about MPG (L/100km for those from the old continent) ratings. You buy it because of performance.

Yet another year going down the drain. I might just go and buy a R9-290X when they get cheaper. It's not like new cards will offer much more and even R9-290X doesn't exactly blow my ancient HD7950 out of the sky. The difference is rather small considering the price you pay for it...
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#8
sutyi
RejZoR said:
I just don't get it what's the point in releasing cards with performance of what, 2 years ago? I mean like wtf?! We could buy all this ages ago and today when you want to UPGRADE your card from those ages ago, you get the same thing under new name. With "improved power consumption". Like i give a F. Give me a card with more performance than i already have. You don't buy a freakin Ferrari to worry about MPG (L/100km for those from the old continent) ratings. You buy it because of performance.

Yet another year going down the drain. I might just go and buy a R9-290X when they get cheaper. It's not like new cards will offer much more and even R9-290X doesn't exactly blow my ancient HD7950 out of the sky. The difference is rather small considering the price you pay for it...
Point of these cards is that you can get the same performance level with a lower power and thermal envelope.
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#9
HumanSmoke
RejZoR said:
I just don't get it what's the point in releasing cards with performance of what, 2 years ago? I mean like wtf?! We could buy all this ages ago and today when you want to UPGRADE your card from those ages ago, you get the same thing under new name. With "improved power consumption". Like i give a F. Give me a card with more performance than i already have.
You must be new to the world of graphics cards, because it has been the case that incoming cards that aren't the flagship usually replace the card one step up the hierarchy in the previous series. You probably don't believe me- it's beyond comprehension right?
HD 7850 at or near HD 6950 performance at a lower price
HD 7870 at or near HD 6970 performance at a lower price
HD 6870 at or near HD 5850 performance at a lower price
GTX 570 at or near GTX 480 performance at a lower price
GTX 560 Ti at or near GTX 470 performance at a lower price

Weird sh!t huh!
RejZoR said:
Yet another year going down the drain. I might just go and buy a R9-290X when they get cheaper
Happy shopping.
RejZoR said:
It's not like new cards will offer much more and even R9-290X doesn't exactly blow my ancient HD7950 out of the sky. The difference is rather small considering the price you pay for it...
In other news, Bears still crap in the woods and the Pope remains Roman Catholic.
Posted on Reply
#10
alwayssts
HumanSmoke said:
Seems likely. It's almost as if the GTX 770's price cut has made allowed the 960 to slip into the product stack in it's place while the 770 shuffles off its mortal coil.

If the card features the GM 204 of the GTX 980/970 then it will come down to how much of a salvage part it is. If the 980/970 sit around 780Ti/780 levels (although latest 3DMark numbers might suggest you'd need a decent overclock to achieve the former), you'd think that disabling a second SMM might still make it competitive with the 280X, which is after all, barely a 7970GE.
I would think 11-12 SMM, ~75% spec like most super-salvage parts (ie 7870xt, 660ti, 760). That is assuming 980 is 15-16 and 970 13. IOW, 1408 or 1536sp (+352-384 sfu). IOW, something similar to 1760 or 1920sp from AMD, but probably better clocking abilities. Either makes sense from both a competitive and efficiency pov. It also allows a huge array of potential bw options (keep 256-bit and use 5-5.5ghz ram, go 192-bit 7ghz, perhaps disable cache if associated to GPCs and disabling this many units allows that possibility etc).

Since GM107 is 5SMM (with a real dubious power/clock limit), the goal would appear to make a stack from two chips. GM107 in the ~75w-<150w range, 960/970 150-225w, and probably 980 225-300w.. The theory would be this would slot in the lower-end of the 150-225w spec. I agree with your general outlook: compete with Tonga/Tahiti and allow GK104 to die, and I would add probably using a similar amount of die area as gk104 (ex: if gm204 is 400mm2, this would be 75% spec similar to the die space of gk104). Perhaps something along the lines of trying to embarrass 285 in it's power/cooling segment and/or perhaps be a better space/power-efficient alternative to 285x. The semantics of specs probably comes to a game of best clock/units per watt within whatever tdp segment is between the (real) power limits of 750ti and 970...I don't think a 'TDP' of ~150-170w with ~190w max power seems out of the question though.

I suppose another main factor will be to wait and launch with at least a smidgen faster speed than 285x at stock, which itself is probably designed for being a smidgen faster than 770 at stock, which of course was a hair faster than 7970ghz, which was in response to 680...which was clocked to compete with OG 7970.

I don't know if that last sentence should make me laugh or cry.

TLDR: I agree with you. We may not know exactly what gm204 is for a couple days, but the segments it has to hit are basically known unknowns. 290x, 290, Tahiti (7970ghz/285x). 500, 400, 300. <300w, up to 225w, ~150w-190w. The last part being what should set them apart. AMD will probably have higher compute, and probably similarly higher power consumption (one notch up from nvidia) per segment in general performance. nvidia will have lower power consumption (similar to one notch down from amd) and similar general performance per segment, but compute will likely require one level up to compete.
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#11
RejZoR
GTX 970 doesn't seem to replace anything. And with the price premium they'll want for it, just not worth it on any level unless you're still on GTX 400 series or something...
Posted on Reply
#12
HumanSmoke
alwayssts said:
I would think 11-12 SMM, ~75% spec like most super-salvage parts (ie 7870xt, 660ti, 760). That is assuming 980 is 15-16 and 970 13. IOW, 1408 or 1536sp (+352-384 sfu). IOW, something similar to 1760 or 1920sp from AMD, but probably better clocking abilities. Either makes sense from both a competitive and efficiency pov. It also allows a huge array of potential bw options (keep 256-bit and use 5-5.5ghz ram, go 192-bit 7ghz, perhaps disable cache if associated to GPCs and disabling this many units allows that possibility etc).
Pretty much what I was thinking regarding the likely performance parameters. The GTX 780 (basically a second salvage part to the 780 Ti) , and the GTX 660 Ti (likewise for the GTX 680/770) are the closest architecturally to the GM 204, and both are a ~25% degradation of the full die GPU - that should put it ballpark with the 280X/285X if the GTX 980 approximates a little under 780 Ti levels of performance.
alwayssts said:
I suppose another main factor will be to wait and launch with at least a smidgen faster speed than 285x at stock, which itself is probably designed for being a smidgen faster than 770 at stock, which of course was a hair faster than 7970ghz, which was in response to 680...which was clocked to compete with OG 7970.
Should be interesting to see who blinks first. I have a feeling AMD might need to release the 285X just to put something on show since new cards tend to generate interest regardless of segment. The other part of the equation might be that GM 204 might be as clockable as GM 107. Not sure about the legitimacy of these scores but if they are legit, they could keep AMD guessing as to performance especially if AIB's get custom cards out on launch day.
RejZoR said:
GTX 970 doesn't seem to replace anything.
Ah, good. You know the performance of the card! What is it?...
RejZoR said:
And with the price premium they'll want for it
...and the price! C'mon don't hold out on us.

I was under the impression that the 970 was going to be an alternative to the 780. Prices for the card seem to be falling - which makes sense if TSMC's 28nm is mature enough that yields justify possibly canning it.
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#13
Frick
Fishfaced Nincompoop
Gimme low profile passive cards at R7 250 performance levels (I honestly have no idea what the Nvidia equivalent is) or better!
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#14
RejZoR
HumanSmoke said:
Pretty much what I was thinking regarding the likely performance parameters. The GTX 780 (basically a second salvage part to the 780 Ti) , and the GTX 660 Ti (likewise for the GTX 680/770) are the closest architecturally to the GM 204, and both are a ~25% degradation of the full die GPU - that should put it ballpark with the 280X/285X if the GTX 980 approximates a little under 780 Ti levels of performance.

Should be interesting to see who blinks first. I have a feeling AMD might need to release the 285X just to put something on show since new cards tend to generate interest regardless of segment. The other part of the equation might be that GM 204 might be as clockable as GM 107. Not sure about the legitimacy of these scores but if they are legit, they could keep AMD guessing as to performance especially if AIB's get custom cards out on launch day.

Ah, good. You know the performance of the card! What is it?...

...and the price! C'mon don't hold out on us.

I was under the impression that the 970 was going to be an alternative to the 780. Prices for the card seem to be falling - which makes sense if TSMC's 28nm is mature enough that yields justify possibly canning it.
There were scores already posted and they weren't particularly exciting. As for the price, it's NVIDIA. If you expect it to be cheap, i can already assure you it won't be. Even without knowing any prices.
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#15
The Von Matrices
Frick said:
Gimme low profile passive cards at R7 250 performance levels (I honestly have no idea what the Nvidia equivalent is) or better!
I don't think that will ever happen in a discrete GPU. The market for those 25-35W cards has been mostly replaced with integrated graphics and for that reason you no longer see either GPU manufacturer spending a lot of effort to make new GPUs in that class. However, I wouldn't be surprised if in 2-3 years integrated graphics had R7 250 levels of performance.
Posted on Reply
#16
HumanSmoke
Frick said:
Gimme low profile passive cards at R7 250 performance levels (I honestly have no idea what the Nvidia equivalent is) or better!
R7 250 performance levels? I'm guessing you either have a sub-HD monitor or you're not talking about gaming performance. Anyhow, I think the 250 falls between the GT 640 and GTX 650 or GT 740 "performance wise"
Posted on Reply
#17
lZKoce
Frick said:
Gimme low profile passive cards at R7 250 performance levels (I honestly have no idea what the Nvidia equivalent is) or better!
Well, you can get 750Ti Low profile, but passive?! Come on man, even the legendary *in my opinion*- 7550 LP from Sapphire hits 80 degrees as soon as you go into 3D mode. It's not that easy to cool down a GPU when gaming or benchmarking or working on 100% load. I think that's unrealistic in any scenario about "high-end" LP cards. I am not talking gt 610 here. My laptop GT 630 overheats on SC2 once in a while. :)
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#19
awesomesauce
i am more of the 990gtx..
would like to see another dual gpu with a good price.
Posted on Reply
#20
Frick
Fishfaced Nincompoop
lZKoce said:
Well, you can get 750Ti Low profile, but passive?! Come on man, even the legendary *in my opinion*- 7550 LP from Sapphire hits 80 degrees as soon as you go into 3D mode. It's not that easy to cool down a GPU when gaming or benchmarking or working on 100% load. I think that's unrealistic in any scenario about "high-end" LP cards. I am not talking gt 610 here. My laptop GT 630 overheats on SC2 once in a while. :)
I know, my non passive GT530 goes to about 75 C under load (and dies at 82 C). I still want it. :(
Posted on Reply
#21
Casecutter
Frick said:
Gimme low profile passive cards at R7 250 performance levels (I honestly have no idea what the Nvidia equivalent is) or better!
Yea I'm stunned Nvidia isn't more on this to provide HTPC (some limited gaming) for media enclosures as a means/option for folks looking to displacing more of AMD APU’s and even their GPU.

I’d figure reference 750 (or something with slightly less clocks) able to get a in the L-P passive with a creative heat-pipe finned cooler even if two slots. If you figure the TDP of the 750 is 10W less than the 250 Oland XT, it should with just a little engineering a passive even if dual-slot shouldn’t be all that much stretch. Cost that's a different story.

Maybe I'm overly optimistic as there's that R7 250E (Cape Verde PRO indicated to be 55W) and those are L-P, though single-slot and assuredly need a small fan. While even to create that Sapphire Ultimate R7 250, it received a "creative" heat-pipe finned cooler and it's still not L-P or single slot. That said how many 750's are L-P (a few), but as single-slot even even with a fan? At least with the R250E there's already a few…
Posted on Reply
#22
HumanSmoke
Casecutter said:
Yea I'm stunned Nvidia isn't more on this to provide HTPC (some limited gaming) for media enclosures as a means/option for folks looking to displacing more of AMD APU’s and even their GPU.
There are plenty of passive cards available at the low end of the GPU scale, the problem is that a low profile form factor offers too little surface area for a passive heatsink as IZKoce mentioned. You can buy a R7 250 that's passive as well as Nvidia cards that perform both worse than the 250 and better, but you're restricted by the heatsink surface area requirement to a full width card.
Posted on Reply
#23
GhostRyder
Casecutter said:
Yea I'm stunned Nvidia isn't more on this to provide HTPC (some limited gaming) for media enclosures as a means/option for folks looking to displacing more of AMD APU’s and even their GPU.

I’d figure reference 750 (or something with slightly less clocks) able to get a in the L-P passive with a creative heat-pipe finned cooler even if two slots. If you figure the TDP of the 750 is 10W less than the 250 Oland XT, it should with just a little engineering a passive even if dual-slot shouldn’t be all that much stretch. Cost that's a different story.

Maybe I'm overly optimistic as there's that R7 250E (Cape Verde PRO indicated to be 55W) and those are L-P, though single-slot and assuredly need a small fan. While even to create that Sapphire Ultimate R7 250, it received a "creative" heat-pipe finned cooler and it's still not L-P or single slot. That said how many 750's are L-P (a few), but as single-slot even even with a fan? At least with the R250E there's already a few…
Well Gigabyte tried something like that with the Brix and its GPU but ran into heating issues.

I would believe the 750ti is done right could be passively cooled but it would require a machine built around the card with some sort of airflow in the system. But that is of course just speculation based on what ive seen.
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#24
Lagittaja
9 SMM is way too far from 970, 12 is way too close to 970 (670 vs 680 anyone?) and 11 would put it closer to 970 than what it is from 980.
So this thing should be 10 SMM SKU.
Core config would be 1280:80:32 (shader processors:texture mapping units:render output units) with 256bit bus width and GDDR5 clocked between 6-7Ghz.

They could also do 11 SMM SKU but that would put it closer to the 970 than what 970 is from 980.
Which could be solved by lower stock clocks (more overclocking headroom, would eat 970 sales) or by keeping the clocks and strangling the card with 192bit bus width which I would dislike a lot. I hope they don't do that. Seriously. Nvidia, if you're reading this. Just don't..

SO I'm personally hoping for a 10 SMM SKU with 256bit bus width. It would of course be a bit further away from 970 than what 970 is from 980 but that could be solved by higher stock clocks which could be allowed by the smaller SMM count.

Infact I'd be almost willing to bet on the 960 being a 10 SMM SKU.
Posted on Reply
#25
james888
btarunr said:
$300 is not its price. The category is sub-$300 ($199-$299). If it could beat R9 280X, I'd be impressed.
@btarunr, why do you think this? The 770 has 13% more performance than the 760 at 1080p. The 670 has 14% more performance than the 660 at 1080p. Assuming 15% less performance than the 970 I would expect it to perform between the 770 and 780 at 1080p beating out the 280x 11%.
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