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GTX485 Launch: Less hot and noisy in the sack?

While we all like the idea of hot lovers, GPU hotspots are a killer. Each generation of chip gets more and more complicated, creating unwanted ‘electrical friction’ – with billions of microscopic components interacting in unpredictable ways to generate current loss and heat. However, give an engineer time and he will find ways to distress the GPU design with the expert touch of a Swedish Masseuse. Will nVidia’s GTX485 be able to woo the undecideds?

If you have a production line with one person, and that person works a little harder, then you get a little more product at the end of the day.

Pack the line with 480 people, and even a relatively small increase in productivity can deliver clearly measurable results.

Now spend time moving the production lines around and installing better air conditioning, then you might find that they produce more and in a nicer, cooler environment.

KitGuru has heard that nVidia’s been through the first iteration of the GTX480 with a fine tooth comb, to create a GTX485 product that can run at least 20MHz more on the core clock, with improved cooling and performance. It’s also worked through some neat driver improvements that will also help. Nice.

How has this improvement been made possible and why has it taken so long?

Bill Dally is a smart cookie. One that spent 10 years at MIT creating massive, experimental, parallel processing systems. He’s used to increasing the smoothness of a machine’s operation by reducing the effort needed to synchronize disparate components. Useful, now that he has Fermi to tame.

nVidia's Bill Dally wants Fermi cooler and quieter
Bill Dally: Proud father ready to kill off GTX480 with a cooler/quieter/faster Fermi?

So what is the GeForce GTX 485?

Simply put, it’s what Fermi should have been at launch.

A little quicker. A little cooler. A little easier to make.

With the earlier price move announced exclusively by KitGuru, we’re now expecting the GTX485 to come in around $20 higher into distribution than the launch price of the GTX480. It will also overclock easier, because more of the pesky electrons will be going where they are supposed to go. Nice.

nVidia GTX 485 launch price drop
Will GTX 485 offer bigger holes for your enjoyment?

KitGuru says: Interesting move by nVidia. VERY unusual for the company with the single fastest chip to beat their own product within a few weeks of launching. We guess that Northern Islands (the revamped Radeon 5000 chip) must be very close to launching and nVidia wants to push every soldier it has into battle now. Good news for nVidia fanbois who have been holding off on GTX480 because they were not sure about all that heat and noise. What does that mean to the street pricing? We expect the £395 GTX480 to come down to £375 and the GTX 485 will launch at £419.

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