Nvidia’s GTX 200 series has been around for 5 months. The GT200 core that powers the GTX 200 series cards is a beast of a core, the largest core produced by TMSC weighing at 575 mm^2 with 1.4 billion transistors. The GTX 280 uses a fully functional core with 10 of 10 SIMT (single instruction, multi-threaded) units while the original GTX 260 used a GT200 core with 8 of 10 SIMT cores enabled. On September 16th, 2008 Nvidia released a new GTX 260 with 9 of 10 SIMT cores enabled, providing a theoretical 12% performance boost.
Today, I’ve got a 10 SIMT 216 stream processor GTX 260 from XFX. This card, the XFX GTX 260 Black Edition, takes the 216 stream processor GTX 260 core and pumps up the clocks considerably. The stock GTX 260 frequencies are 576MHz core, 1242MHz shaders, and 999MHz memory. The GTX 260 Black Edition weighs in at a hefty 666MHz core, stream processors at 1404 MHz, and memory at 1150MHz. This is a 90MHz core overclock (15%), 162MHz shader overclock (13%), and a 151MHz (15%) memory overclock. All across the board you are looking at a 15% performance increase above the original GTX 260 and a 12% performance increase above the 216 SP GTX 260.
The XFX GTX 260 Black Edition uses the reference cooler from Nvidia and comes bundled with Far Cry 2. XFX features a unique Double Lifetime Warranty that covers the card for you, the original owner, along with anyone that you may sell the card to. As long as you register the card with XFX, you are covered.