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nVidia unveils 'Graphics Tesla' 200 GPU

Second generation GT processor shipping in two new graphics cards from nVidia.

Graphics behemoth nVidia has unveiled its latest graphics processing unit (GPU) codenamed Graphics Tesla 200 (GT200 for short). This is the second generation GT processor, the first being the G80, which powered GeForce 8 series cards such as the GeForce 8800 GTX and Ultra.

The GT200, made up of 1.4-billion transistors, is the successor to the G92 and G80 families and nVidia has, so far, launched two variants; the GeForce GTX 280 and GTX 260.

Of the two, the GTX 280 is the faster model boasting 240 stream processors, a core clock of 602MHz, shader clock of 1296MHz and memory that runs at 2214MHz. The GTX 260 however features 192 stream units, a 576MHz core frequency, shaders that run at 1242MHz and memory that is clocked at 1998MHz. GTX 280 cards will feature up to a maximum of 1GB of memory, whereas 260 cards will be allocated no more than 896MB.

The GTX 280 replaces the GeForce 9800 GX2 as nVidia's top-end card and compared to the GX2, which uses two GPUs running in SLI mode on a single circuit board, the newer GTX 280 is a single-chip solution.

nVidia staff say the 280 will require 236-watts of power and uses one 6-pin and one 8-pin power connector. Because of its lower specifications, the 260 is specified as requiring 183-watts, which can be supplied via two 6-pin power connectors.

Vendors such as Leadtek, XFX and Zotac are already shipping cards and stocks of GTX 280 cards are expected to hit stores in the region by the weekend. GTX 260 cards are expected to arrive by 26 June. nVidia recommends a retail price of $650 and $400 for standard clocked GTX 280 and GTX 260 cards respectively.

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