When we got an overnight package from NVIDIA this past Friday we expected it to be a holiday gift like most of the other companies are doing right now. We’ve been loaded up with holiday cookies and greeting cards so far this month, so when we got the above package from NVIDIA it looked to be a holiday surprise.
Once we opened up the package we found a holiday card and a welcome letter letting us know that we were given the NVIDIA GeForce GTX 570 reference card to review and that the official launch date was December 7th, 2010 at 6am PST. NVIDIA gave us just over three days to review the GeForce GTX 570; how nice of them. NVIDIA must guess that hardware reviewers do nothing over the weekend or they wanted to slip something past reviewers that they didn’t want discovered. In our ‘holiday gift box’ we got a reviewer’s guide, a GeForce GTX Tank T-Shirt: Collector’s Edition and a single GeForce GTX 570 reference card.
As many of our readers knew already, the new NVIDIA GeForce GTX 570 uses the same GF110 Fermi core that is found on the GTX 580 but it has a number of things disabled. If you look at the specifications chart below you’ll see that the GeForce GTX 570 has fewer SMPs, CUDA Cores, Texture Units, ROP Units, GDDR5 memory and lower overall performance than the GeForce GTX 580.
As you can see the GeForce GTX 570 has 480 CUDA cores and 15 PolyMorph engines. If you recall this is pretty much the same processing unit configuration as the original GeForce GTX 480 as it too had 480 CUDA Cores and 15 PolyMorph engines. The GeForce GTX 480 had a GPU clock of 700MHz, a Stream Processor clock of
1401MHz and the 1536MB frame buffer consisting of Samsung GDDR5
memory was clocked at 924MHz, for an effective data rate of 3696MHz. The new GeForce GTX 570 has a GPU core clock speed of 732MHz, a Stream Processor clock of
1464MHz and the 1280MB (1.25GB) GDDR5 memory is now running at 950MHz, for an
effective data rate of 3800MHz. The GeForce GTX 570 runs faster on the core since it has higher clock speeds, but the memory bandwidth is 14% less than the GeForce GTX 480 (177.4GB/s) since it has less memory and operates on a narrower 320-bit bus. That means the GeForce GTX 570 should perform better in applications where it is not being memory limited.
Since the GeForce GTX 570 is so close to the GeForce GTX 480 it makes no since to continue to carry both video cards. NVIDIA confirmed that now that the GTX 570 GPU has been released that the GeForce GTX 480 will be discontinued after the supply of chips/cards runs out. Both the NVIDIA GeForce GTX 480 and GTX 465 are End of Life (EOL). The GeForce GTX 470 will remain in the product stack at $254.99 with the GeForce GTX 570 at $349.99 and the GeForce GTX 580 at $509.99. With the ATI Radeon HD 5870 coming in at $259.99 the GeForce GTX 570 doesn’t have any direct price competition until AMD released their Cayman series of video cards which will consist of the Radeon HD 6970 and 6950 and that is supposed to happen next week. Let’s take a closer look at the GeForce GTX 570 and see what it is all about!