NVIDIA’s GTX 800 series shifted back to 28nm node


Its that time of the year when both AMD and NVIDIA are working hard on their next generation GPUs and people are anxiously waiting for them. We’ve seen several reports in the past about the upcoming NVIDIA GTX 800 series which will be based on new Maxwell architecture featuring the all new 20nm manufacturing node. However, that does not seem to be the case any more. We also reported about this issue last month and now a latest report from KitGuru further validates our previous report.


TSMC had started mass production of 20nm silicon since almost two months ago but reportedly, Apple stepped in at the last minute and annihilated whatever manufacturing capacity they had. And obviously, Apple’s needs were put above NVIDIA’s. Now, the green team is expected to debut the GTX 800 series starting with GTX 880 and GTX 870 in late October or November as we previously reported. These cards will now be based on the same 28nm manufacturing node as the Kepler chips but later down the road, NVIDIA will shift these GPUs to the newer 20nm node. This has happened in the past with G92 GPU as well when the GeForce 9800 GT and 9800 GTX were originally launched with 65nm G92 chips but later they were shifted to 55nm G92b chips. The former was not renamed but the later was launched as a separate graphics card named 9800 GTX+.

NVIDIA GeForce GTX 880 Specifications

GeForce GTX 880 GeForce GTX 780 Ti
GPU Model GM104 GK110-425
CUDA cores 3200 2880
TMUs 200  240
ROPs 32  48
Memory Size 4GB 4GB
Memory Bus 256-bit 384-bit
Core Clock 900 MHz 875 MHz
Boost Clock 950 MHz 928 MHz
Power Connectors 8pin + 6pin 8pin + 6pin
TDP 250W  250W
Launch Date Summer, 2014  Nov 7, 2013

Shifting from the initial plan of 20nm Maxwell to 28nm will surely come with some disadvantages. NVIDIA will probably take some time to redesign the architecture for 28nm node which could cause some additional delays. Secondly, the 28nm Maxwell wouldn’t be that much different from Kepler. It’ll surely be faster than the current cards but it can be vaguely regarded as a “more efficient version of Kepler”.

Furthermore, the GTX 800 series, especially the GTX 880, was expected to debut with on-board ARM co-processor which would help in communication with the CPU taking some load from the GPU chip. However, with the setbacks mentioned earlier, NVIDIA might also drop this from 28nm Maxwell cards and later bring it with 20nm ones.

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