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Asus Motherboard with 9400 GPU  (Source: NVIDIA)
New GeForce 9400 and 9300 GPUs feature 16 cores

NVIDIA officially announced today that it has new GeForce integrated GPUs that will be available soon on motherboards form the typical NVIDIA partners. The new integrated GPUs include the GeForce 9400 and 9300 and are intended for desktop PCs using Intel CPUs.

NVIDIA says that the new GPUs offer full system I/O and discrete-level performance in a package half the size of previous integrated GPUs. The NVIDIA 9400 and 9300 GPUs have 16 cores and are CUDA capable. NVIDIA even promises that the integrated GPUs are capable of playing the latest top PC games and Blu-ray movies.

Dr. Jon Peddie said in a statement, "These new mGPUs give NVIDIA a big advantage over other integrated graphics chips. By doing so much parallel processing on a single chip, they can accelerate the new visual computing applications people are getting, and at a reasonable price. The GeForce 9400 and 9300 mGPUs set a new standard for what users should expect from today’s more mainstream desktop systems."

The new 9-series motherboard GPUs support NVIDIA PureVideo HD and are capable of offloading all video processing from the CPU to the GPU. The GPUs support advanced audio and video including uncompressed LPMC 7.1, dual-link DVI and HDMI.

Support for NVIDIA's Hybrid SLI technology is included and boost performance up to 70% higher than the motherboard GPU alone. NVIDIA says that motherboards using the new GPU will ship this month from XFX, ASUS, ECS, EVGA, Foxconn, Galaxy, and more.

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By 325hhee on 10/20/2008 1:43:44 PM , Rating: -1
Do any gamers really use on board graphics? That's always the bottle neck for real gamers, which is why we buy after market cards. I'm very curious on their claim of being able to play top end games, and would love to see the FPS numbers. Also what kind of stress would that put onto their boards.

RE: Gamers
By Zirconium on 10/20/2008 1:47:57 PM , Rating: 2
I'm very curious on their claim of being able to play top end games, and would love to see the FPS numbers.
Anandtech just had an article on this:

No, "real gamers" don't use integrated graphics. However, these things are good enough for many users' needs and would work really great in an HTPC.

RE: Gamers
By Mitch101 on 10/20/2008 2:15:09 PM , Rating: 2
Come to think of it why don't we have a Motherboard on the level of or higher performance than an Xbox 360 by now for enthusiasts that want gaming power in a low profile?

I would be open to buying a motherboard with something like a high end graphics chip or even x2 config built onto the motherboard so I could have something more low profile that can one can game on. I could use a L bracket to lay a PCI-E graphics card flat but then I would have to customize a case. Most high end graphic cards never get released in low profile formats until they are obsolete.

They have built so much onto the motherboard that I dont really have a need for PCI slots and if high end graphics are on the mobo already I wont need the PCI-E slot either. As for video capture cards they can be USB externals.

Heck why not GPU sockets on a mobo and Ram Slots. Ok that might be too far but there should be an enthusiast mobo by now.

RE: Gamers
By Omega215D on 10/20/2008 4:41:29 PM , Rating: 2
Motherboards tend to be 6 layers (resin or whatever) and adding any more interconnects will complicate the manufacture of a motherboard. This will make the board cost much more and maybe an increase in failure rate from bad connections to heat. All while maintaining its benefit of being upgradeable with other add-in cards, RAM and SATA ports for drives and much more without having to throw out an already expensive motherboard should a new socketed GPU come out that has more pins.

Maybe some day there'll be a motherboard where everything is socketed but we'll see.

RE: Gamers
By Mitch101 on 10/20/2008 6:02:07 PM , Rating: 2
I kind of follow you but It really shouldn't be any more difficult than creating a gaming system motherboard like the 360's. RROD jokes aside.

GPC - Gaming PC - Homebrew HDTV Gamebox?
Essentially a small form factor PC in a casing designed for your living room. Comes pre-installed with Linux or Windows with XBMC. Throw on a wireless Logitech gamepad and an IR port and its good to go. I know someone will reference Phantom but this would be more of an open system.

RE: Gamers
By MGSsancho on 10/20/2008 7:12:36 PM , Rating: 2
6 layers? 40 layers boards have been made with 10ghz signals for over 13 years already. 25ghz for over 5 years. heat and all the problems you mentioned are not a problem for low end technology like desktop mobos and server mobos. that is not a problem. mass producing (lots of thousands are currently being done im talking about millions of boards) is a little bit more tricky but its still not bad. only complications are really 10ghz+ but more so are fine details (tiny interconnections and traces.) the mobo in your blackberry is 5 years more advanced then a desktop mobo.

it is really about cost. i have no idea what components, testing, packaging, shipping and stuff cost. im only familiar with board manufacturing. but a BS figure from out of thin air, id guess a standard desktop mobo cost less than $10 per board to manufacture. then again ive seen boards a square inch in size been made for prototype testing break the 6 figure mark. but to keep it simple, to add a few layers and keep the thickness the same, i would say tripling the cost to be safe.

RE: Gamers
By theapparition on 10/21/2008 8:08:15 AM , Rating: 2
Going to 8 layers doesn't cost all that much. In fact, I belive some of the nVidia motherboards are already at 8 layers. Going mulit-layer itself is the cost driver, from the cheap doublesided boards. Once you have the prepreg stack, it doesn't make much difference if you're sqeezing together 3 or 4. Only when you get to 16+ layers is there a chance of mis-registration (where the inner layers shift and via's no longer align).
If a 6 layer board is $10, figure an 8 layer one at around $12. But if you're making a million of them........that's 2million dollars you've just lost. Always better to reduce cost as much as possible. Another thing, you don't pay per board, you pay per panel. The more boards you can fit on a panel, the lower each board will cost (aka chips on silion wafers). Shop's that have optimized panel size for motherboards will have a lower price.

RE: Gamers
By Calin on 10/21/2008 4:23:26 AM , Rating: 2
The days of the backplanes are long gone, and won't return

RE: Gamers
By theapparition on 10/21/2008 8:01:49 AM , Rating: 2
Guess we should stop designing that backplane based system because Calin said so.

Seriously, backplanes are still here and will stay for a while. VME, CPCI and lately ATCA and uTCA. All backplane based.

Get a clue.

RE: Gamers
By rudy on 10/20/2008 5:28:54 PM , Rating: 1
True but
Think about the main complaint of companies and even us. Casual / noob gamers cannot handle high end games before they become knowledgable enough to buy a better card. If this could allow them to run at 30-60fps on any modern game then there would probably be more noobs becoming avid gamers. On the other hand with intel boards you will keep seeing people who try games have a bad experience and head back to the console.

This could be a chicken/egg first arguements. Do most gamers have dicrete graphics cause they want them or do most people who dont get them just not become gamers for PCs?

Anyhow this is only good the more power integrated the better especially with hybrid technologies coming online and better performance with SLI/Crosfire.

RE: Gamers
By sotti on 10/20/2008 1:50:07 PM , Rating: 2
These are actually great for real gamers...

The reason is that if these platforms are the bare must run on platforms, it enables them to do much more for the highend cards. When you have to be able to play a game on a 945g, it's very limiting to what the developers can do on the high end.

So better integrated graphics is a win for highend gamers because it will allow developers to make better games.

Also it will be sweet for the gamer that wants an HTPC that can also play a couple maps of TF2.

RE: Gamers
By kyleb2112 on 10/21/2008 5:10:26 PM , Rating: 2
But what do you do when the shader model used in games ticks up a notch? Throw out your motherboard? I like being able to keep up with games just by popping in a mid range card once a year--a little more convenient than rebuilding the whole system.

RE: Gamers
By MagnumMan on 10/20/2008 1:50:26 PM , Rating: 1
It only says that it is capable of playing the latest high-end games. It doesn't say how well. I use 3x Radeon HD 3870 water cooled at 1000MHz GPU speed with CrossFireX and it plays Bioshock on a 2560x1600 screen beautifully. I assume the same setup would crawl with a built-in solution, but that's not the target market for integrated graphics is it...

RE: Gamers
By jmunjr on 10/20/2008 3:11:43 PM , Rating: 2
Well no sh*t.. Do you really expect a mainstream system to perform at a level that perhaps less than .001% of all PCs in the world perform at(like yours)? Come on, the fact that an integrated graphics mobo can play most games good enough so that a good gamer can still perform well is a great thing.

Perhaps you are afraid you'll get dominated by someone running a system with integrated graphics?

RE: Gamers
By quiksilvr on 10/20/2008 1:50:31 PM , Rating: 2
It may not be for gamers but its more than enough for HD entertainment. Blu ray, HD shows and even Call of Duty 4 at medium settings and 1280x800 runs a-ok. In fact, I wouldn't be surprised if Crysis: Warhead ran on it with reasonable settings.

RE: Gamers
By dickeywang on 10/20/2008 2:35:56 PM , Rating: 2
Well, I guess at least there are many laptop users are playing games with IGP. I recently tried Warcraft3 on a Core2Duo laptop with Intel X3100 IGP, and it works reasonably well. But I think you're right, not many desktop gamers would use IGP to play games.

RE: Gamers
By Chernobyl68 on 10/20/2008 6:58:54 PM , Rating: 2
I think the real handicap to today's integrated graphics is probably memory. Sharing with the system will always be worse than discrete memory on the graphics card, no matter how good the chip is.

RE: Gamers
By jonmcc33 on 10/20/2008 8:58:59 PM , Rating: 2
If it's as good as my Radeon X1900XT is right now then I'll go ahead and can my video card for a new motherboard.

RE: Gamers
By FITCamaro on 10/21/2008 8:40:21 AM , Rating: 2
I'm playing FFVII through a PS emulator on my laptop atm.

RE: Gamers
By superkdogg on 10/21/2008 1:13:38 PM , Rating: 2
For a while, I played EVE Online on a laptop with Radeon 200m graphics. Not the discreet version either.

My current laptop has GFG 7600 discreet chip and at least plays most games. Plays some of the less demanding games pretty well, and even newer games will work if you turn down some settings. It does almost everything I need and it will perform at a level somewhat like the new motherboards in question.

Something that's fundamental to this discussion is that these motherboards are not ever going to replace a discreet card for newer games and/or better settings. They do offer (probably for the first time) an integrated solution that will allow for gaming that some people will find acceptable. That in and of itself is progress. Hopefully the idea takes hold.

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