NVIDIA's upcoming Summer 2008 lineup gets some additional details

Later this week NVIDIA will enact an embargo on its upcoming next-generation graphics core, codenamed D10U.  The launch schedule of this processor, verified by DailyTech, claims the GPU will make its debut as two separate graphics cards, currently named GeForce GTX 280 (D10U-30) and GeForce GTX 260 (D10U-20). 

The GTX 280 enables all features of the D10U processor; the GTX 260 version will consist of a significantly cut-down version of the same GPU.  The D10U-30 will enable all 240 unified stream processors designed into the processor.  NVIDIA documentation claims these second-generation unified shaders perform 50 percent better than the shaders found on the D9 cards released earlier this year.

The main difference between the two new GeForce GTX variants revolves around the number of shaders and memory bus width.  Most importantly, NVIDIA disables 48 stream processors on the GTX 260. GTX 280 ships with a 512-bit memory bus capable of supporting 1GB GDDR3 memory; the GTX 260 alternative has a 448-bit bus with support for 896MB.  

GTX 280 and 260 add virtually all of the same features as GeForce 9800GTX: PCIe 2.0, OpenGL 2.1, SLI and PureVideoHD.  The company also claims both cards will support two SLI-risers for 3-way SLI support.

Unlike the upcoming AMD Radeon 4000 series, currently scheduled to launch in early June, the D10U chipset does not support DirectX extentions above 10.0.  Next-generation Radeon will also ship with GDDR5 while the June GeForce refresh is confined to just GDDR3.

The GTX series is NVIDIA's first attempt at incorporating the PhysX stream engine into the D10U shader engine.  The press decks currently do not shed a lot of information on this support, and the company will likely not elaborate on this before the June 18 launch date.

After NVIDIA purchased PhysX developer AGEIA in February 2008, the company announced all CUDA-enabled processors would support PhysX.  NVIDIA has not delivered on this promise yet, though D10U will support CUDA, and therefore PhysX, right out of the gate.

NVIDIA's documentation does not list an estimated street price for the new cards.

"I modded down, down, down, and the flames went higher." -- Sven Olsen
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