NVIDIA’s GTX 480 Performance Testing
The GeForce GTX 480 “wins” – at what cost?
- Price to Performance
It is pretty clear from our 14 games and two synthetic tests that the GTX 480 has regained for NVIDIA the performance crown for the fastest single GPU. However, it does not have the distinction of being the fastest video card. The HD 5970 – a dual GPU solution by AMD graphics – still holds that crown. So let’s look at pricing versus performance to determine if NVIDIA has a winner with their new Fermi architecture. We expect many variations of GeForce GF100 Fermi video cards to go up against AMD’s current offernings. Let’s look at the current DX11 cards to see where they are now in both price and performance:
- HD 5970 – $600
- GTX 480 – $500
- HD 5870 – $430
- GTX 470 – $350
- HD 5850 – $330
As we can see, these cards do not compete directly with each exactly in price nor in performance. They seem to have created their own slots to match their performance independently of each other. This portends that we may not see the kind of price war that AMD and NVIDIA have been engaged in since GTX 280 came out at $650 and HD 4870 came out shortly afterward to force the GTX to drop to $500 until AMD launched its unchallenged DX11 lineup over 6 months ago.
So we have to wonder what AMD’s strategy might be. Well, we have the answer for you pictured below. It arrived at ABT HQ this Friday afternoon just in time to spoil NVIDIA’s launch. Notice the free down-loadable copy of Call of Duty, Modern Warfare 2 bundled in with the PowerColor HD 5870 PCS+ as an incentive.
Clearly AMD is confident in its own mature product and they are apparently not going to rush to bring out a “5890”. It is clear that they are leaving their partners to use their own cooliing solutions and to overclock HD 5870 much higher than reference to attempt to catch NVIDIA’s 480 GTX. Will this strategy work? How will NVIDIA respond? Will they unlock the extra shaders in the GTX 480 for an “ultra” version on the current stepping, A3? Will there even be another stepping and respin? We will attempt to cover this in Part Two of our GTX 480 Performance analysis versus a potentially highly overclocked HD 5870; and of course, we shall overclock our GTX also.