Monday, February 12, 2007

Power to the Video Card

I think it's fair to officially say that video card companies have gone insane.

From VR-Zone:
VR-Zone has learned about some new details on 80nm R600 today and there will be 2 SKUs at launch; XTX and XT. There will be 2 versions of R600XTX; one is for OEM/SI and the other for retail. Both feature 1GB DDR4 memories on board but the OEM version is 12.4" long to be exact and the retail is 9.5" long. The above picture shows a 12.4" OEM version. The power consumption of the card is huge at 270W for 12" version and 240W for 9.5" version. As for R600XT, it will have 512MB of GDDR3 memories onboard, 9.5" long and consumes 240W of power.

What? Two hundred and seventy freaking watts?

In case you're wondering, the GeForce 8800 GTX, a card that was previously judged to have a gigantic power requirement, needs 165W and is 10 1/2" long.

Has AMD just not gotten the message about performance per watt?

Even worst, AMD's next-next-gen video card has gone completely off the deep end. Thanks to DQ source A. Nonymous, who snapped this top-secret picture of the AMD R9000HAL video card.

Here's an excerpt from his e-mail:
There's no close-up because one, people were very nervous about having anyone from the outside in the lab (with good reason, since I got a picture!), and two, I wanted you to see just how damn big this video card is. That's a bare card next to a card with the heat sink installed. And no, you're not imagining things--that's an 8800BTU air conditioner mounted on the card. It's some new kind of heat transfer system that's supposed to cool both the card and the room the system is in.

I asked what the power requirements were, and three guys at once said "external power supply."

The 3DMark scores are supposed to be fantastic, though.

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