NVIDIA unveils new lineup of Fermi-based DX11-enabled mobile GPUs

NVIDIA has just lifted the lid on its new lineup of seven Fermi-based GeForce GT and GTX 400M mobile GPUs, revamping the entire mid to high-end range.
Written by Adrian Kingsley-Hughes, Senior Contributing Editor

NVIDIA has just lifted the lid on its new lineup of seven Fermi-based GeForce GT and GTX 400M mobile GPUs, revamping the entire mid to high-end range.

At the high end are two "enthusiast" grade GPUs, the GTX 470M and GTX 460M, and the mid range is made up of five "performance" grade GPUs, the GT 445M, GT 435M, GT 425M, GT 420M and GT 415M.

These GPUs are all DirectX 11 compatible, as well as supporting NVIDIA's "Graphics Plus" features such as PhysX, 3D Vision (on the few notebooks that feature a 120Hz LCD screen), CUDA and 3DTV Play. On top of all that, they also support NVIDIA's Optimus technology that allows you to enjoy good graphics when you need it without sucking all the life out of your battery too quickly.

Note: Some of you might remember that NVIDIA released a GTX 480M a few months ago. This GPU compliments this lineup and is NVIDIA's most powerful mobile GPU. A quick look at the specs show that the GTX 470M/460M are clocked higher than the GTX 480M but have fewer CUDA cores and lower memory bandwidth.

I have three questions:

  • First, what's real-world performance like?
  • Secondly, how cool do these GPUs run (since NVIDIA seems to have challenges cooling these in desktops)?
  • Finally, How soon until AMD respond with updated mobile Radeon GPUs?

Here's the official press release:

NVIDIA today introduced the NVIDIA® GeForce™ 400M series of graphics processing units (GPUs) -- the building blocks for the next-generation of NVIDIA Optimus™ and NVIDIA 3D Vision™ notebooks that are coming onto the market from leading vendors, including Acer, Asus, Dell, Lenovo, Samsung and Toshiba, with others set to announce soon.

The new series of NVIDIA GeForce 400M GPUs includes:

For enthusiast users: GeForce GTX 470M and GTX 460M. For performance users: GeForce GT 445M, GT 435M, GT 425M, GT 420M and GT 415M.

A critical component of the GeForce 400M Series is support for NVIDIA Optimus technology, which enables extra-long battery life by automatically switching on and off the GPU so that it runs only when needed. It has been described by reviewers as among the most important notebook technologies to come to market in recent years.

The NVIDIA GeForce 400M series are the first notebook processors designed with NVIDIA's Fermi architecture and built from the ground-up for Microsoft DirectX 11. They power notebooks with great battery life, and deliver the best high-definition (HD) experience, extensive Web browsing, immersive 3D and awesome gaming. With up to 5X faster HD video uploads to Facebook and up to 10X the game performance on the year's top title StarCraft II, GeForce, 400M GPUs are the ultimate notebook upgrade.

The GeForce 400M series is also able to deliver breathtaking stereoscopic 3D images for gamers, movie-lovers and photo enthusiasts when configured with NVIDIA 3D Vision glasses and a 3D display. 3D Vision supports the richest array of 3D content available, including over 425 games, Blu-ray 3D movies, photos and streaming Web video. Notebook models featuring the GeForce 400M series and NVIDIA 3D Vision glasses will be available soon after launch, including the Acer Aspire 5745DG with GeForce GT 425M and the Asus G53Jw with GeForce GTX 460M. In addition, by including support for NVIDIA 3DTV Play™, consumers can attach their notebook to a brand new 3D TV and enjoy all the latest 3D content including the hottest games in the comfort of their living room.

Only NVIDIA GeForce GPUs offer "Graphics Plus" features such as:

NVIDIA 3D Vision™ support, for eye-popping immersive 3D environments PhysX™ support, for experiencing games with realistic physics effects CUDA™ support, for GPU computing applications NVIDIA Verde™ notebook drivers, for system stability and optimal performance Support for NVIDIA 3DTV Play™ software, for connecting 3D Vision-based notebooks and desktops to a 3D TV.

Acer, Asus, Dell, Lenovo, Samsung, and Toshiba all announced today support for 400 Series GPUs, with more OEMs announcing soon.

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