updated 10:15 am EDT, Tue May 25, 2010
NVIDIA claims GTX 480M wins mobile speed crown
NVIDIA today started off its GeForce 400M notebook graphics line by launching the series' highest-end model. The GeForce GTX 480M has almost three times as many shader (effects) cores as the 285M it replaces at 352 and carries the hardware tessellation, cache and other changes that make it a generational leap. NVIDIA claims that the 480M can be as much as five times faster than ATI's Mobility Radeon 5000 series in graphics duties and 10 times faster encoding video when using technology like CUDA or OpenCL.
To fit inside a notebook chassis, the main clock speed scales back to 425MHz but clocks the individual cores at 850MHz and mates these to 1.2GHz memory on a 256-bit bus. NVIDIA promises the 480M will support 3D Vision and should be one of the first graphics chipsets to get frequent Windows driver updates through unified Verde drivers.
Clevo will be the first to launch a notebook design using the new GeForce chip and, as a white label, will supply 480M-equipped notebooks to Eurocom and others. As a power-hungry graphics chipset, the hardware isn't likely to end up in thin-and-light notebooks but should reach desktop replacement notebooks as well as some compact gaming desktops. Mid-range and low-end GeForce 400M chips should arrive at a later date.