updated 02:35 pm EDT, Wed March 14, 2007
GeForce 8500 and 8600 Info
NVIDIA is about to release its first GeForce 8-series video cards, newly leaked information reveals. The graphics card producer intends to release three boards that share the unified shaders of the 8800 line but cut the amount of memory and clock speeds to keep prices in check.
The flagship 8600 GTS (shown) will be the fastest, according to the leak: it will actually be clocked higher than more expensive cards with a 675MHz core, but will use a 128-bit memory bus (reduced from 384 bits) and 1GHz memory; the 8600 GT, in turn, will clock at a more modest 540MHz core and 700MHz memory. A final model the 8500 GT, has not been given final clock speeds but will have the option of falling back to less expensive DDR2 memory for budget PCs. The 8600 GTS will ship with 256MB of memory while its less expensive counterparts have the option of 128MB.
All three cards should have some degree of support for HDCP encryption to play protected videos (such as some Blu-Ray and HD DVDs) and will also be much more power-efficient than the 8800 cards, the source says. The 8600 GTS will peak at 71W of power in heavy use, making it a better fit for small PCs; the 8600 GT will consume even less at 43W. Every card will have the option of swapping one of the dual-link DVI outputs with HDMI for connecting to a TV.
While price points haven't been divulged, NVIDIA hopes to launch the new cards in the spring, competing directly against AMD's planned Radeon X2000 series cards. [via DailyTech]