Archive for the ‘GPU’ Category

Mind shifting from CPU to GPU – Intel vs. NVIDIA

Wednesday, March 4th, 2009

After Intel dragged its case against NVIDIA to the court, CEO Jen-Hsun Huang of NVIDIA could not resist in making the repeated statement that GPUs have arrived leaving CPUs outdates in the finely indirect reference to the credo of graphics chip maker that PC processor mind share would soon shift from to NVIDIA from Intel. The statement which Huang inserted in the recent NVIDIA release about Intel’s court filing read as at the core of the issue is that CPU has already run its course and the essence of PC is quickly shifting to GPUs. It also said that it is clearly an effort to smother innovation to safeguard a vanishing business.

It is not the first time NVIDIA’s CEO Huang said this as he had mentioned openly last year that the company can “open up a can of whoop-ass” over Intel when he was responding to questions regarding the forthcoming Larrabee graphics technology of Intel. Huang has also said many times in forums that CPUs of Intel are good enough and are not so finely indirect code, where the CPU technology of Intel is past its principals.

However some questions should be posed as is Huang right? Would consumers place more importance on GPUs than CPUs? And finally more important is, would chipmakers and PC makers put significantly more marketing and development resources in the GPUs? So, a quick solution to the first question is consumers often expect computers to perform better when handling web-based games, graphics and videos and so unconsciously or consciously consumers might put more emphasis on GPUs. There is also a small answer to the later question, as for instance, if you look at the Puma laptop platform of AMD, there is an increased emphasis on graphics as the platform is performance driven. Therefore surely as a chipmaker the graphics technology from their ATI units is making a broader mark these days compare to CPUs.

This however does not mean that impetus is necessarily in the favor of NVIDIA. A great change happening in the PC market is not just the drive from CPU to GPU but also a shift from conventional laptops to inexpensive laptops or netbooks and currently most of the market is all of Intel. An analyst at Investment Bank Collins Stewart Ashok Kumar said that the dramatic change which is happening in the PC industry is altogether migration to inexpensive solutions which are netbooks. He said that Intel integrated graphics only in a sense that it might pose more of a challenge for NVIDIA in the future.

In fact the netbook market shows probably more compared to anything what a consumer mindset is. It is not necessary for the graphics to be great or good but they should be adequate. Although the CEO of NVIDIA is right when he said GPU technology is far beyond integrated graphics, he is also not necessarily right when he says that there is massive mind share shift to the NVIDIA standard GPU centric universe.

NVIDIA enhances graphics performance on notebooks

Wednesday, January 14th, 2009

NVIDIA had a look on increasing popularity of ‘netbooks’ and drew the conclusion that something is missing- quality of visual performance demanded by users within the developed market. Hence, graphics chip-makers got set to have worked on constructing the Ion hardware platform with respect to tiny form-factor desktops and notebooks constructed on Atom processors of Intel. Moreover, early returns have suggested that such a thing can be one of the category killers.

ChannelWeb saw ‘Ion’ in action at NVIDIA’s headquarters on 15th of December, 2008. Its platform comprises of a motherboard (atom-based), paired with GeForce 9400 onboard graphics processor, complete CUDA support, and ridiculous quantity of I/O.

Team of NVIDIA demonstrated Ion within an ultra-small ‘desktop reference design’. This Ion is better known as ‘nettop’. However, platform has also been built for ‘mobile PCs’. The small desktop that was seen fitted in palm (of one hand). Moreover, it was just a ‘mess’ of ports. It wasn’t the slimmest-looking device. However, it was handy, as far as showing off graphics support was concerned and acceleration that was built by NVIDIA in to Ion.

NVIDIA went on to run the demo for making the product look better. However, results of neck-to-neck competition between standard netbook (atom-based) and Ion nettop with GMA 950 integrated graphics of Intel were spectacular. NVIDIA moved ahead with having fired up ‘Call of Duty 4′ without even a hitch; while Intel netbook went on to struggle to even have booted ‘visually rich’ PC game. Ion system also boasted of better video playback; thanks to ‘full-spec’ 1080p badaboom and HD video support, GPU-tapping ‘video Transco ding accelerator (from Elemental Technologies).

NVIDIA, already having its ‘GeForce 9400 GPUs’ within recent line of ‘Apple MacBooks’, has said that it has expected Ion-based netbooks to be priced at around $50 greater than present systems based on GMA 950. For extra cash, sixteen ‘graphics processing cores’ can be obtained by users, which deliver fifty-two Gflops of ‘processing power’, which seems to be a compelling story, at least from the perspective of the reviewers.

ChannelWeb has been quite bearish with regards to netbooks, in spite of hype and hooplah created about these products. That is basically due to the fact that it is being heard from retailers, resellers, and OEMs about extremely large numbers of ‘netbooks’ that’re being returned by purchasers, especially in markets of North America.

As said by sources, reason behind returns is that the users within mature markets might get fascinated by promise and price of notebooks, and might get completely disappointed with shortcomings of the same while getting them back home. Graphics shortcomings are the largest ones amongst factors of disappointment. These days, users, business travelers and commuters in particular wish to have quality playback on computing devices operating at the primary level.

As an outcome, makers of netbooks have, in certain cases, gone ahead with the amendment of their wild-eyed, earlier promotions of novel category. For instance- HP now markets HP mini-Note PCs in the form of complementary device of computing (not the primary one).

NVIDIA GeForce Release New Drivers

Wednesday, December 10th, 2008

If you are using a GeForce 200-series or 8800 series or a 9 series desktop GPU then you will surely be excited about the good news you have. The new NVIDIA GeForce has releases their new 180 drivers that will surely give your system a performance boast, which means that it will increase your computer system performance. Most of the people have downloaded and also installed the latest GeForce Release 180 drivers or the 180.48 drivers of NVIDIA for their GTX 280 systems and GTX 260 systems and they have found a noticeable and dramatic difference in the performance of their computer system.

NVIDIA are actually very frank about boasting their new drivers. They have also released some highlights that make some courageous claims. NVIDIA states that this new GeForce release 180 drivers will

  • Increase the performance to nearly about 18 percent in the world of conflicts
  • Increase the performance to nearly about 80 percent for Lost Planet: Colonies
  • Increase the performance to nearly about 18 percent in Race Driver: GRID
  • Increase the performance to nearly about 38 percent in Far Cry 2
  • Increase performance to up to 25 percent in the Devil May Cry 4
  • Nearly 10 percent performance increase for Crysis Warhead
  • Increase the performance to nearly 15 percent for Company of Heroes: Opposing Fronts
  • It increases the performance in BioShock to nearly 13 percent
  • The same performance increase of 13 percent in Assassin’s Creed and
  • Increase performance to nearly 10 percent in 3DMark Vantage the performance preset.

With some of the quick tests that were carried out on Vista Ultimate 64-bit system that had GTX 260/QZ9770 and 8GB of RAM which is system that is daily used but is not optimized for gaming and the tests showed some remarkable improvements in its performance. These performance increases are:

  • World of Conflicts to nearly 11 percent
  • Far Cry 2 to nearly 18 percent
  • Crysis Warhead to nearly 7 percent and
  • 3DMark Vantage showed up nearly 7 percent performance increase.

Apart from this there an overall system performance increase was also observed. Those who conducted the tests feel that the graphics were much smoother and also the odd hesitation that were felt before in most parts of the Far Cry 2 and Crysis Warhead games which both run at very high graphics quality was entirely vanished. These are surely some of the best results that you can avail from a driver update.

Additionally NVIDIA has also included some new features like:

  • Enables NVIDIA PhysX acceleration for a keen GeForce graphics card as it used one card is used for graphics while dedicates a different card for PhysX processing for the changing physical effects in the game.
  • NVIDIA SLI Multi-monitor support is enabled letting you utilize two monitors supported by GeForce cards under SLI mode. Through this feature you can easily switch between a 3D gaming mode in full-screen and multi-monitor desktop mode.
  • It enables NVIDIA SLI technology for SLI certified Intel X58-based motherboards that have GPU as GeForce 9800 GTX, GeForce 9800 GTX+, GeForce 9800 GX2, GeForce GTX 260 and GeForce GTX 280.