Rumors about the upcoming Maxwell based NVIDIA GeForce GTX 980 and GTX 970 graphics cards started rolling in quite a while ago but its only a few days ago, the 900 series naming scheme got confirmed. The green team is reportedly jumping straight to GTX 900 series from GTX 700 series. We reported alleged specifications of the GTX 980 a while ago as it was seem listed on an Australian e-retailer. The GTX 980 is company’s next flagship Maxwell based graphics card but it’ll not replacing the GTX Titan or GTX 780 Ti but it’ll replace the GTX 780. We reported 3DMark 11 scores of the GTX 980 but now, thanks to VideoCardz, we have the 3DMark Fire Strike scores of both GTX 980 and GTX 970.
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 980 and GTX 970 specifications:
We do not have confirmed information about the specifications of the GTX 980 and GTX 970 but these will be obviously based on GM204 GPU which is equipped with 2560 CUDA cores, 160 TMUs and 64 ROPs. Furthermore, it’ll be equipped with a 4GB GDDR5 memory spread across a 256-bit wide memory interface. The GTX 980 will reportedly have less than 200W TDP and will only require two 6-pin PCIe connectors. This is a big steps in terms of power efficiency as compared to previous generations.
The GeForce GTX 970 will also be based on the GM204 GPU but it’ll have slightly less number of CUDA cores and other hardware resources. However, the 4GB 256-bit wide memory will be a pretty standard affair moving towards Maxwell graphics.
The clock of both the graphics cards are not confirmed but according to the information provided by VideoCardz, the GTX 980 will probably have 1127 MHz core clock and 1753 MHz memory clock whereas the GTX 970 will have 1051 MHz core clock and 1753 MHz memory clock.
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 980 and GTX 970 3DMark performance:
VideoCardz has not revealed any information about where they got the performance data or they tested the cards themselves but we would consider their information pretty credible. They tested the GTX 980 with Intel Core i7-3770K and Core i5-3450. It is tested with three different core clocks and in 2-way SLI as well. Even at the lowest core clock (1127/1753 MHz), the GTX 980 is faster than a GTX Titan, GTX 780 and GTX 780 Ti as well as AMD Radeon R9 290X. With other two alleged clocks (1178/1753 MHz and 1190/1753 MHz), it is a few percent faster than the lowest core clock tested.
As mentioned, the GTX 980 is also tested in SLI. In this test, the 1178/1753 MHz frequency is used. The GTX 980 SLI ends up being only a few percent slower than the AMD Radeon R9 295X2 whereas its considerably faster than R9 290 Crossfire and GTX 770 SLI.
The GTX 970 is tested with Core i7-3770K and Core i3 4130. The core clock is set at 1051/1753 MHz and it ends up being around 15% slower than the GTX 980 whereas it beats GTX 780 and R9 290. From what we’ve heard about the overclocking abilities of GM 204 core, we are pretty confident that an overclocked GTX 970 will be able to beat GTX 780 Ti and GTX Titan.
NVIDIA is expected to announce the new Maxwell architecture in a couple of days with the reviews of GTX 980 and GTX 970 going live by 19 September, 2014. We’ll report back when we get more information.