More details on Nvidia's new GTX 200 series GPUs, which are set to launch sometime next month, courtesy of the site TGDaily.
The new chip will reportedly be massive, measuring 576 square millimeters, due to the increased number of processing units and a 512-bit memory controller. All told it will have around 1 billion transistors. By comparison the current G92 (the basis of several GeForce 8800 and 9800 series GPUs) measures 330 square millimeters. Both are manufactured on a 65nm processs by TSMC, the world's largest foundry.
AMD's Radeon HD 3800 series (aka the RV670) is significantly smaller, measuring 192 square millimeters with 666 million transistors. It is also manufactured by TSMC, but using a more advanced 55nm process.
The size of the chip determines the manufacturing cost--the smaller the chip, the more you can squeeze onto a single silicon wafer. TGDaily estimates that 100 GTX 280 or GTX 260 GPUs will fit on a single wafer (which has a diameter of 300mm). By my calculations, the actual number would be closer to 94 assuming a perfect yield, so the real figure would be even lower.
In other words, if these specs are accurate, the GTX 280 and GTX 260 will make for some very pricey, albeit powerful, graphics cards. Within the next few weeks, we should get all the details, and find out how it will stack up against the AMD Radeon 4800 series.