The NVIDIA GeForce GTX 580 is what we would consider a GeForce GTX 480 video card done right. When the GeForce GTX 480 first came out we were less than impressed and were one of the very few sites that didn’t give it an award or praise it because it was very fast in certain areas. Why is this? We knew something wasn’t exactly right about the card and when we went to use it on a daily basis in our office it would actually heat up our office to the point where it was uncomfortable. Trying to cook an egg on the GeForce GTX 480 made a few people upset at NVIDIA, but no one said our thoughts were wrong. NVIDIA brought out a new BIOS revision and later new drivers that helped reduce the temperature issues we found when running dual monitors. These are all just patches and were by no means a solution to the problem. Over the past seven months not one company wanted to send us a retail version to review because they knew our stance. This morning’s release of the GeForce GTX 580 and the fact that it is a re-engineered GF100 core with enhancements and improvements done to it confirm that we were right in our initial thoughts. That said, the GeForce GTX 580 is a whole new beast.
The NVIDIA GeForce GTX 580 video card has better performance, makes less noise, runs cooler and draws less power than the GTX 480. We honestly love this card and it really sucks for NVIDIA that the original GeForce GTX 470 wasn’t designed this way. The performance of the GeForce GTX 580 was great and we constantly saw double digit performance gains in many of the games and applications that we benchmarked. Overclocking performance was also good as we were able to get another ~10% or so from a card that was already at the top of the performance charts for single GPU performance.
When it comes to pricing NVIDIA informed us that the GeForce GTX 580 will be $499 and that the NVIDIA GeForce GTX 480 will remain in the product lineup at around $449. If you look at online retailers like Newegg the GeForce GTX 580 is listed at $559.99 at the low end and some of the overclocked cards are priced at $589.99. Newegg looks like they are doing a 10% promo code right now, but they state that it is a limited time offer. Usually NVIDIA gives out a product lineup pricing sheet when a new GPU launches, but that was not the case this time. In fact, we specifically asked for one and were not given one. Based on the fact that NVIDIA won’t give us an SRP list of their products we feel that the $499 price they told the press isn’t accurate and that the prices shown online are correct.
Newegg GeForce GTX 580 Video Card Launch Day Pricing Before 10% Off Code EMCZZYR24:
11/9/2010 3PM CST UPDATE: NVIDIA just sent us an e-mail letting us know that they felt we were a bit harsh with out pricing comments and shared a link to Tiger Direct where they have a Galaxy GeForce GTX 580 available for the $499 price they told the press the card would be launched at. When we looked into pricing this morning there were no $499 cards available. We also noticed that Newegg dropped the price of the Gigabyte GeForce GTX 580 down to $549.99 now and after the 10% discount that card is down to $495. Looks like $495 is the best price to be seen so far.
The NVIDIA GeForce GTX 580 after the 10% off discount code can be had for $503.99, which makes it slightly more than the ATI Radeon HD 5970. The ATI Radeon HD 5970 can be found for $469.99 after rebate, so as you can see there is a $40 price difference between the two cards. The ATI Radeon HD 5970 was faster than the GTX580 in many of the benchmarks, but remember this is a dual-GPU solution and the GTX580 has just one GPU. The GeForce GTX 580 has a better upgrade path, uses less power, is nearly 3″ shorter and doesn’t have any multi-GPU scaling issues that arise with CrossFire and SLI solutions. Other things to consider are PhysX, 3D Vision and superior F@H and SLI scaling performance. It looks like AMD needs to get the Radeon HD 6900 series out the door! The AMD Radeon HD 6900 series will consist of Cayman (single-GPU) and Antilles (dual-GPU) and we can only hope that they can compete with the GeForce GTX 580. Our prediction is that the GeForce GTX 580 will be faster than Cayman, but will cost way more. Based on our testing we have to give the GeForce GTX 580 the Editor’s Choice award as this card is fast and NVIDIA looks to have designed it right the second time around.
Legit Bottom Line: The NVIDIA GeForce GTX 580 Video Card has better performance, makes less noise, runs cooler and draws less power than the GTX 480!