Yesterday we got a first sneak peek at what may well be Nvidia's upcoming dual-GPU card from EVGA at CES 2011. Let's take a look:
This card is a beast!
There are three interesting observations that can be made from this image:
Firstly, the card is sporting a massive, three fan cooler, not unlike the aftermarket Arctic Cooling solutions produced for previous generation cards. It's highly likely that this isn't the 'stock' cooler, and this is EVGA's own custom solution for cooling this massive card.
Secondly, you may be able to observe at the end that there are 2 8-pin PCI-E power connectors. This indicates that the card will be extremely power hungry, perhaps in the region of 375W, breaking the PC-SIG PCI-E compliance standards (though that could be an EVGA decision). This isn't that surprising since we know how much power current-generation cards comsume and the fact that this is two of them put together. Never the less, this could well require many adopters to switch to more powerful PSUs.
Finally, the presence of 3 DVI outputs indicates that this card will be able to make use of 3 screens simultaneously - Nvidia's Surround Gaming.
The card is quite long
Next up, we can see the bottom of the card, which reveals some information about the possible specifications of the card. You can clearly see there are two GPU cores, each with four memory chips, suggesting at the very least, there is a total of 1GB GDDR5 VRAM on the card. It's almost certain there are more memory chips on the other side of the PCB. This configuration has two sensible possibilities:
1) The card is a down-tuned dual GF110 (i.e. GTX 580/570) with 12 more memory chips not visible, meaning that the card runs 5 out of 6 memory/ROP Partition units per GPU. This would suggest an arrangement similar to two Nvidia GTX 570 cards.
2) The card makes use of two GF114 gpu cores (i.e. upcoming GTX 560) with another four memory chips per GPU not visible. This would suggest the card is like a dual GTX 560 card.
The image suggests that the second option may well be correct as there are no obvious other footprints for memory chips on the side of the PCB not visible, and the core shape is more rectangular looking, suggesting the GF114 GPU over the GF110.
However, would this single card be cheaper than two GTX 560 GPUs? Also, why are the apparent power requirements so high for such a configuration? We'll have to wait and see to find out more. Only EVGA has showed us any information on this so far. The rumours have been that Nvidia are waiting to counter AMD's Antilles (Radeon HD 6990) GPU before their new multi-GPU card is released. That said, 2 possible similar cards from Nvidia never made the cut due to complexities and power requirements - we haven't seen one since the GTX 295 two years ago.
What do you think? Will you buy one if it's released? Share your comments in the forums