So far, nVidia's launch of the Kepler range has gone smoothly. The only real hiccups have come with stock and the re-branding for some of the old 5xx cards into the 610 and 620. With the low and high ends sorted, focus for Bryan Del Rizzo moves to the mid-range and those pesky 7000 cards hanging out below £100. KitGuru spies hang around outside nVidia's favourite KFC to see what can be overheard.
While the system integrators have been evaluating nVidia's upcoming GT640 for the best part of a month, the actual launch itself is scheduled to happen over at Computex on the 5th June.
As with previous budget cards, nVidia's GT 640 will need to offer a range of options to customers for whom £10-£20 may well make a difference.
Entry Level GT 640
This will come with low cost/low performance 128-bit memory interface with 1 or 2GB of DDR3 and a core clock speed around 797MHz. The fact that this is a low profile card will come as good news to some.
Mid Level GT 640
Increasing the memory interface to 192-bit will help get more performance, but the clock on the GPU itself has been dropped to 720MHz. That said, it could be that the 1.5GB to 3GB memory options will make this an attractive choice for people are easily fooled into thinking that the bigger the RAM, the bigger the performance.
Top Shelf GT 640
In the ‘as good as it gets' zone, Bryan Del Rizzo has been working hard on a blend of seasonings that will appeal to all KFC (Kepler Followers Club) lovers. Only a 128-bit memory interface, but at least it will be GDDR5. Also, there are 384 CUDA cores and the core clock has been ramped right up to 950MHz with a 1 or 2GB memory option.
How the cards will be configured in terms of connectivity is a little bit of a mystery for now. Once of the people overheard in Santa Clara's KFC seemed to indicate that 4 screen connections was possible, but a quick look at Del Rizzo's face does not seem to indicate that the ‘Top Shelf version' of the GT 640 will support more than 3 connections. But maybe we're wrong.
Given that even with the longest of the cards, Del Rizzo is only packing 5.7″ means that it should be enough to make most chassis feel as though ‘there is something there'.
KitGuru says: The world plus dog is waiting for the 660 version of the Kepler card, but – in reality – this will almost certainly sell more globally. The truth is that people who care about graphics will struggle to justify such a lite-spec – but it will still give system builders plenty of talking points for their advertising etc.