updated 09:25 am EDT, Tue June 28, 2011
NVIDIA makes GeForce GTX 580M official
NVIDIA on Tuesday morning officially took the wraps from its new flagship notebook graphics, the GeForce GTX 580M and GTX 570M. Both promise about 20 percent faster performance for the power draw than the 470M/480M models they replace. The GTX 580M is fast enough to smoothly play Crysis 2 at full detail in DirectX 11, Black Ops at 100 frames per second, and even some games at 1080p in 3D, although both ideally in a twin-chip SLI mode.
The 580M is intended for large notebooks and small form factor desktops and touts 384 cores, each running at 1.24GHz, along with 1.5GHz GDDR5 memory and a 256-bit memory bus. Moving to the 570M steps down to 336 cores at 1.15GHz along with a 192-bit bus, although the shrink suits it to more conventional notebooks.
The 580M is headed to Alienware first and will be part of the PC builder's two fastest notebooks. The 580M has been identified as the mystery chip for the M18x and will be available in one- or two-chip versions. Alienware's existing M17x is getting a single-chip layout but, through its support for Optimus live graphics switching, can get relatively competent battery life not often seen in a 17-inch notebook. NVIDIA claims to get the full Black Ops benchmark speed when on AC but still a full five hours when it switches over to Intel video for untethered use.
The new chips are available today, though their reach will depend on individual computer designers' own plans.