Nvidia promised great things from its new Kepler GPUs, and it appears that the company may just deliver on those promises. It just launched its latest flagship graphics card, the GeForce GTX 680, and initial reviews show it wiping the floor with AMD's top single-GPU board.
The stock 28nm card has 1,536 CUDA cores, 128 texture units, a core clock speed of 1006MHz, memory clock of 6008MHz, and 2GB of GDDR5 video memory, though manufacturers will offer their own overclocked solutions. It also manages to use less power than its Fermi predecessor (GeForce GTX 580). One key new feature is GPU Boost, which automatically adjusts the clock speed to turbocharge performance when you need it.
Early benchmarks have shown that the 680 defeats the new Radeon HD 7970 in nearly all tests, sometimes by as much as 25 percent. You can check out reviews from Hot Hardware, AnandTech, and PCMag.com to learn more. Even trickier for AMD, however, is that Nvidia is pricing the 680 at $499, or around $50 less than the 7970.
As you might expect, gaming desktop PC builders are already offering the new Nvidia card in their systems. We've heard from AVADirect, CyberPower, Digital Storm, Maingear, Origin PC, and Velocity Micro, and there will clearly be others in the coming weeks.
So it appears that Nvidia has won the latest skirmish in the never-ending graphics card war. Are you going to buy the new GeForce GTX 680? How can AMD respond to the 680's apparent performance, power consumption, and pricing advantage? Let us know your thoughts in the Comments section.