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euclideon logo
Hardware

[Mini-Editorial] Euclideon’s Infinite Detail Engine is probably one of the most mythological pieces of technologies that exist in the gaming world. Back when it was released, it raised one helluva storm before dying down as a fraud or a scam. Over the years they have been making ripples and bubbles and many critics have started to reconsider their statements. It’s about time too, because Euclideon has just released a video showcasing their current level of technology and unless I am very much mistaken, announced the future of the Gaming Industry. euclideon logo

Two Games Using the Euclideon Unlimited Detail Engine Are In Development – Game Division in 2015

I still remember seeing the initial video they released all those years back and feeling the awe as they zoomed down to a grain of sand. Needless to say, I was pretty bummed when the consensus on the Internet branded it as an elaborate hoax. It now makes me very happy to state that this does not appear to be the case, and that the Euclideon Engine is  (probably) legit. Now to be fair, some competitors do exist for this company, with the most noteworthy being Atomontage Engine. However, Euclideon remains the only company that claims to be able to render ‘unlimited’ number of 3D Pixels/Voxels/Points/Atoms (whatever you want to call them).

The new video can be found on Youtube, on Euclideon’s official channel. They initially talk about how graphics have progressed throughout the ages, but then move on to show some incredibly breath taking montages of buildings and places. However, I don’t know who these guys are kidding because even though our current technology cant match that level of fidelity that the Unlimited Detail Engine boasts, it still looks like Game-y Visuals. You can see samples form the video clip yourself. The biggest argument raised by critics was that even if the engine is true, it is based on Voxels/Point Clouds and will not be able to do animations. And the CEO of the company addresses these at the very end:

“Yes, Euclideon is working on two games…. Yes [Unlimited Detail Engine] can do Animation and Yes its very good. “

I don’t know about you guys, but I am certainly willing to give them the benefit of the doubt. The company has now reached such phenomenal heights that it seems too big to fail (pun intended). Their Geoverse initiative is pretty huge too, bigger than even gaming applications; if that is even possible. Either way, they will show off Animation in their next video (though I have a feeling, we might have to wait a few years for it) and will open a Gaming Division in 2015. Looks like the future is coming real soon folks, because this in addition with an Occulus Rift would be heaven.

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nvidia-geforce-gtx-logo
Hardware

Something pretty strange happened today, apparently Nvidia has agreed to support Adoptive Sync (the technology behind AMD’s FreeSync). Nvidia has been acting pretty interestingly lately. They not only released amazingly priced GPUs but are now going to support a direct competitor of G-Sync.AMD Freesync TechSpot Image

AMD FreeSync Gets Nvidia Support – Adaptive Sync Tech Supported by Both Giants Now

Nvidia’s G-Sync and AMD’s FreeSync are technologies aimed at eliminating the obstacles faced by current display technologies. With this tech, you should be able to view a very low fps or very high fps output without it having stuttering, delay, tearing and much more. Basically, something that should have been common place by now but really isn’t. However, G-Sync and FreeSync work completely differently and have not yet been compared side by side in real life. This is because of the lack of Adaptive Sync enabled monitors in the market.

However, it would appear that Nvidia has surprisingly agreed to giving Adaptive Sync and therefore FreeSync its full support. It has also hinted that G-Sync would be a superior alternative and appears to be quite confident in that statement. Although since FreeSync is now part of the VESA standard, it kinda makes sense that Nvidia has agreed to this. By the way, all this was revealed at a secret press conference in San Fransico during GAME24 as reported by Sweclockers.com. There is a relative lack of information surrounding this development but since the folks over at Sweclockers personally attended this event, it is certainly not a rumor.

The publication also states that the new Maxwell GPUs will support the same. This is conjunction with AMD’s offering since very specific GPUs will have FreeSync capability. Quoting TTR: “That means brand-new cards like the Radeon R9 280, 280X, 270, and 270X won’t be FreeSync-capable. Nor will any older Radeons in the HD 7000 and 8000 series. AMD tells us these prior-gen GPUs don’t have the necessary support for the latest DisplayPort standard.

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AMD has been awfully quiet about it’s manufacturing process plans for 2016 and beyond. We’ve heard the company’s CEO talk about the subject for the first time only a couple of weeks ago. During the Deutsche Bank conference in which he also uncovered some valuable information about next generation CPU and GPU architectures.

Interestingly enough AMD published a press release last Thursday in which the company talked about 16nm,14nm and even 10nm manufacturing technologies.

AMD Event

AMD Partners With Synopsys to Design Future CPUs and GPUs on 16nm/14nm and 10nm.

AMD announced that it’s going to be partnering with Synopsys on 16nm/14nm and 10nm manufacturing technologies. Synopsys is a company that specializes in providing design companies with the necessary tools and services that enable the transition to more advanced process nodes.
The agreement includes :

nvidia-geforce-gtx-logo
Hardware

Now that the hype surrounding the Maxwell flagships is fading away, we turn our attention to the youngest sibling that is still lagging behind: The Geforce GTX 960 GPU. Virtually nothing is known about this card. All we know is that the GTX 780 Ti, GTX 780 and GTX 770 were discontinued with the exception of the 760. This kepler card stayed behind for the sole purpose of holding the fort till its Maxwell counterpart arrives. Today we take a look at simulated benchmarks from the well known, DG Lee, who has once again used his proprietary equation system great effect. NVIDIA Maxwell GM204

Nvidia Geforce GTX 960 Gets Simulated Benchmarks – On track for October Launch

The basic problem we have is that no one knows anything about the 960 apart from the fact that it will be releasing in october. We also know that it will be slower than the 970 and based on the GM204 die (though this is pretty much common sense). The card will target the Sub $300 price point and will probably retail for around $250. Which means it will be targeted dead center at AMD’s Tonga Offering. According to the specs of its successor, the GTX 960 should have 10 – 12 SMM (Streaming Multiprocessor Maxwell) which equates to a core count of 1280 – 1536 with the latter being more likely than the former. The card will probably come with 2GB worth of GDDR5 memory if Nvidia’s previous patterns are any indication. Anyways here is the probable performance of the GTX 970 (sourced from IYD.KR) with exactly 1 less SMM:

GALAX Logo
Hardware

GALAX’s upcoming GeForce GTX 980 HOF which features a custom designed, white colored PCB was spotted over at Intel’s X99 LAN Party even which was held in Beijing, China. The card was spotted running on a setup which was used by ASRock’s Nick Shih to achieve a world record overclock on Intel’s latest Extreme Edition CPU, the Core i7-5960X.GALAX GeForce GTX 980 HOF

GALAX GeForce GTX 980 HOF Spotted While ASRock’s Nick Shih Achieves 6.6 GHz on a Core i7-5960X

So let’s talk about the world record before we move in to detail the latest HOF graphics card. Nick Shih who is considered one of the professional and renowned overclocker is also ASRock’s in-house man who has played a part in the development of their OC series motherboards such as the OC Formula series based on the Z87, Z97 and X99 chipset. With some LN2 at hand, Nick achieved an overclock of 6.6 GHz on the Core i7-5960X using a test platform which consisted on the ASRock X99 OC Formula motherboard, G.Skill Ripjaws IV (3300 MHz) rams and also the latest GeForce GTX 980 HOF from GALAX (formerly known as Galaxy Microsystems). The overclock was achieved with an insane voltage supply of 1.818V at the core and the single core was clocked as high as 6.594 GHz (63.0 x 104.7 MHz BCLK). Those are really some impressive numbers but the most interesting thing about this news is the card itself.

I have been a huge fan of the HOF series and I really appreciate their custom designed PCB being one of the most high-end designs ever conceived in the graphics industry. The only other brand I consider that can match the brutish design of HOF’s PCB is either the Colorful iGame KUDAN series or the MSI Lightning series. Then there comes the white PCB factor, a milky white PCB absorbed in a white cooling shroud with silver texturing that just looks amazing.

MSI Radeon R9 290X Lightning GPU
Hardware

It has been two days since NVIDIA launched their GeForce Maxwell based GeForce 900 series graphics cards and reports are already emerging that more powerful variants might hit the market within a few month’s time frame. The report is from Nordichardware who confirmed through an MSI representative on Friday during an press conference who confirmed that they will skip their Lightning cooler variant of the Maxwell graphics card in favor of higher performance chips.MSI GeForce Maxwell Lightning GPU

MSI Skips Lightning Cooler For Current GeForce Maxwell Chip

Now this is really interesting news considering GM204 is here to stay for a while and is the current flagship card in the GeForce 900 series family. However, we know that GM204 is a chip derivative of the Kepler GK104 and Fermi GF104 family which are considered mid-tier chips however since Kepler generation, NVIDIA has managed the tune the performance of these chips to match their counterparts flagship offerings and even their own and we have seen the GeForce GTX 980 and GeForce GTX 970 coming out not only faster than the GeForce GTX 780 and 780 Ti but also more power efficient. So there’s that but NVIDIA has a few more Maxwell chips in hand that we haven’t seen yet. They have a budget-tier chip called the GM206 which might be introduced later on with the GeForce GTX 960 or budget level offerings while the true flagship chip aka the GM200 (we can’t confirm whether it will be called the GM200 or GM210 but let’s stick with the former for now since it did leak in the shipping manifestos a while ago) will arrive a while later.

MSI themselves are saying that their Gaming Twin Frozr V cooling is enough for the current GM204 based graphics card however the bigger and more badder Lightning GPU cooler will only be adopted for the high performance chip variants. Do note that the GM204 chip featured on the GeForce GTX 980 is a full chip, so there’s no extra cores, no extra SM (Maxwell) units and no room for internal specifications changes. They can boost the clock speeds but seriously, there are custom variants which already do that and do it much better than NVIDIA’s reference designs.

AMD Radeon Logo
Hardware

Update: Looks like the fight has officially begun and this launch is looking more like the announcement of a new generation of graphics cards as noted in a statement by AMD’s Roy Taylor.

AMD might be getting ready for a new product announcement which could either be a CPU or a GPU. As tweeted by AMD’s India page, it looks like AMD has a special announcement coming on 25th September 2014 which might be related to a new graphics processing unit or a new FirePro product so let’s hop in and find the possibilities of what this launch could be related to.AMD FutureisAMD

AMD Might Be Announcing Next Generation Product on 25th Septemeber

The AMD GPU related teaser comes in just one day after NVIDIA unleashed their Maxwell graphics card which include the GeForce GTX 980 and GeForce GTX 970 in the graphics industry ushering a new era of powerful and highly efficient graphics cards. But looks like NVIDIA isn’t the only one with new announcement at hand and AMD might possibly have an answer to that coming soon. The tweet is pretty simple but looks like AMD is once again using their pills campaign to market the new GPUs. You can see the tweet below before we move into a deeper analysis on what’s going on:

 

As you can note, there are two pills in the marketing slide. One is colored blue and one is colored red. Now first of all, there was a pills related marketing campaign which AMD ran a long time ago during the launch of the HD 7770 GHz graphics card. The Verdetrol pills were used as a teaser for the launch of the first GHz edition graphic card from AMD but they did another teaser with the Radeon R9 295X2 where they used two packs of chips and a water bottle to indicate their water cooled dual GPU solution. The same can be seen here, there’s a red pill which might indicate a water cooling solution such as the one that was leaked a while ago and the red pill may indicate the Radeon chip which will be used to power the graphics card based on the GCN architecture. So it could be related to a new graphics launch as AMD was rumored to launch the Radeon R9 285X sometime in late September as earlier rumors indicate however the launch might possibly be related to a new product which we haven’t hear of before.

DirectX 12
Hardware

[Editorial] So something did happen at GAME24 that we had not foreseen. Or leaked. Or heard about. I am talking about the DirectX 11.3 update that Microsoft has revealed alongside DirectX 12. This seemingly redundant iteration of the API will provide most of the feature set of DX12 minus the processor overhead reduction that is the hallmark of DX12 API.NVIDIA Maxwell GM204 New Technology

Direct3D 11.3 is a Partial DX12 with Most of the Feature Set and No Overhead Reduction

The burning question in everyone’s mind would be ‘Why’? Well, as to that I have no answer. DX12 API already works with older cards so there really is no point to introduce an even newer standard (technically older) to the Market that gives you only half of the stuff. A probable reason that comes to my mind, is that Microsoft wants to make DX 11.3 readily available and DX 12 limited to Windows 9 and above. 50% of the user base has been clinging to Windows 7 and I wont be surprised if Microsoft uses tricks like these to force migration to the new and upcoming OS. The DirectX 11.3 API will contain features that form a subset of D3D 12. So any feature you see here is automatically included in the succeeding API. The following list shows the new “Rendering Features”:

  • Ordered rasterizer View
  • Typed UAV Load
  • Volume Tiled Resources
  • Conservative grid
Geforce GTX logo
Hardware

The GTX 980 and GTX 970 have been released by Nvidia yesterday and several reviews can be found online including ours. Which you should definitely check out if you haven’t already. The new cards not only push performance up but also do it with better efficiency and much more attractive pricing. But that’s not all, Maxwell overclocks much better than Nvidia’s previous architecture Kepler featured in the GTX 600 and 700 series (except the 750 and 750 Ti, those are baby Maxwells).NVIDIA Maxwell GM204

GTX 980 Pushed To The Extreme !

Reviewer’s managed to push aftermarket GTX 980 and GTX 970 cards from Gigabyte and Asus to 1500mhz+ and 1400mhz+ respectively on air. That’s 150-250mhz higher than what was possible on previous generation kepler cards which is quite an achievement.

K|NGP|N and TiN have already managed to break the overclocking world records on 3DMark Fire Strike and Fire Strike Extreme benchmarks. They achieved this by overclocking an EVGA GTX 980 to a staggering 2050mhz on an EVGA X99 motherboard powered by a 1600W EVGA supernova power supply. To sustain this overclock liquid nitrogen was used. And the result is an impressive score of 19040 on Fire Strike and 9191 on Fire Strike Extreme.

NVIDIA GeForce GTX 980 EK-FC980-GTX 4
Hardware

EK Waterblocks are the renowned manufacturer of water cooling products and today, they are introducing their latest EK-FC980 GTX waterblock to cool NVIDIA’s latest Maxwell based GeForce GTX 980 graphics card. NVIDIA’s latest Maxwell architecture runs at incredibly lower temperatures and consumes half the wattage of previous generation cards but the lower TDP of 165W means that users will be able to obtain some really high clock speeds as indicated by the first overclocking results set by KingPin which we will have an article on, very soon.NVIDIA GeForce GTX 980 EK-FC980-GTX

EK Unveils Revolutionary Waterblocks For GeForce GTX 980

Press Release - EK Water Blocks, Ljubljana based premium water cooling gear manufacturer, is proud to introduce full-cover water cooling solution for NVIDIA reference (NVA-1G401) design GeForce GTX 980 series graphics cards, based on Maxwell GM204 graphics processor.

EK-FC980 GTX directly cools the GPU, RAM as well as VRM (voltage regulation module) as water flows directly over these critical areas thus allowing the graphics card and it’s VRM to remain stable under high overclocks.

MSI-GeForce-GTX-970-Gaming-4-GB-635x478
Hardware

Introduction

Two years ago, NVIDIA announced Kepler, their latest architecture which made debut on the GeForce 600 series and that was a start of a new NVIDIA. An NVIDIA that focused on raw performance and fearsome dies which operated at such high temperatures, that there were memes around the web of Thermi (Fermi joke). NVIDIA sort of rectified the issues with original Fermi cards with the release of some good gaming and budget friendly cards such as the GeForce GTX 460 and the 500 series after it but those issues with Fermi thought NVIDIA a lesson which is the reason why Kepler was considered one of the most efficient graphics processing unit in 2012.

The initial Kepler was a gaming card while NVIDIA tamed their high performance GK110 unit for the HPC market. The pricing on the GeForce GTX 700 series is undoubtedly some of the highest we have seen from NVIDIA in a while with the $999 US GeForce GTX Titan, GTX Titan Black to the $2999 US GTX Titan Z but today, we are looking at a card which is not just priced great but absolutely great performance with a nice custom design.

NVIDIA Maxwell GeForce GTX 980 Geforce GTX 970
Hardware

Today, NVIDIA finally unleashes their high-performance GeForce GTX 980 and GeForce GTX 970 graphics card. NVIDIA’s latest graphics cards feature the second generation Maxwell architecture which is the most advanced GPU ever built by NVIDIA featuring great performance and delivering higher efficiency in terms of power input. The Maxwell architecture revolutionizes the graphics industry setting new standards for NVIDIA gamers and fans.NVIDIA GeForce GTX 980 Graphics Card

NVIDIA Unleashes Maxwell GM204 Based GeForce GTX 980 and GeForce GTX 970 Graphics Cards

We have waited for several years for Maxwell to hit the market. While NVIDIA initially released the first core as the GM107 which was based on the first generation architecture design, the GM204 is based on the latest and improved, second generation Maxwell core architecture which adopts some new technologies. So before we go talk about the cards, let’s take a recap of the architectural details we have come to know about GM204.

NVIDIA GM204 GPU Architecture

The GM204 is the heart of the next generation GeForce GTX 980 and GeForce GTX 970 graphics cards. The chip makes use of the second generation Maxwell core architecture that has faster per core performance than first generation Maxwell based chips (GM107) which were released with the GeForce GTX 750 and GeForce GTX 750 Ti graphics cards and has several new features which deliver better performance and great power efficiency making GeForce GTX 980 one of the most efficient flagship offering in history. NVIDIA has changed since their Kepler generation of cards. Before Kepler, NVIDIA was known to release cards which ran hot and consumed a ton of power and the failure rates of the previous generation cards were pretty high. Though, NVIDIA did manage to release some great cards over the period, the G80 based GeForce 8000 GTX and the price/performance king, GTX 460 are still considered one of the greatest NVIDIA cards that came to market.

Kepler changed certain things, NVIDIA moved away from their branding scheme where users were able to buy HPC chips rebranded for the GeForce audience. The first Kepler GPU, the GK104 was branded as the GeForce card and while it was fast, it wasn’t the fastest compared to another chip which NVIDIA had in their hands for over a year. I am talking about the GK110 which was geared towards the professional market such as the Tesla super computer. The GK110 did launch a year later but it since then, NVIDIA has configured their core lineup to span two generations, one with the gaming minded chip and the follow up would be the full fledged HPC chip. There’s a reason for NVIDIA to advertise the GeForce GTX Titan Z as a professional and gaming card even though it clearly has a GeForce name in its branding. The Titan Z makes use of two GK110 chips which are the compute crunching beasts compared to the GK104 which focused on gaming features by excluding all the non essential features such as compute. So while the GM104 based GTX 980 will obviously replace GK110 based GTX 780 Ti in branding, the real comparison in branding should be GM104 versus the GK104. Regardless of this, the GTX 980 is a superb card which beats GK110 on an existing process node.

NVIDIA Maxwell GeForce GTX 980 Geforce GTX 970
Hardware

[Update]: Even more performance numbers along with official slides from the press deck have been posted by PCPOP (Via Videocardz). You can see them at the bottom of this post with some nifty details. We will cover the features in full details in a bit to see how Maxwell actually works out.

This first performance review of NVIDIA’s Maxwell based GeForce GTX 980 and GeForce GTX 970 graphics cards have been leaked. The review was leaked over at Expreview however it has since been removed but we were able to grab most of the performance slides to show you the performance comparisons between NVIDIA’s new and improved Maxwell core architecture versus GK110 and Hawaii.NVIDIA Maxwell GM204

NVIDIA Maxwell GeForce GTX 980 and GeForce GTX 970 Performance Numbers Leaked

The performance numbers leaked were for the reference GeForce GTX 980 and a slightly overclocked ZOTAC GeForce GTX 970 model. Before we take a look at the performance results, let’s take a quick recap at the specs of NVIDIA’s upcoming cards listed below:

Inno3D GeForce GTX 980 iChill Air Boss HerculeZ x4
Hardware

Inno3D’s GeForce GTX 980 iChill Air Boss which features the latest HerculeZ X4 cooling design has been unveiled. The GeForce GTX 980 iChill Air Boss features a beastly cooler which will allow users to get more overclock potential out of the GM204-400 chip fused inside the heart of the GeForce GTX 980’s core. The NVIDIA GeForce GTX 980 and GeForce GTX 970 launch in just a few hours.Inno3D GeForce GTX 980 iChill Air Boss HerculeZ x4

Inno3D GeForce GTX 980 iChill Air Boss With HerculeZ X4 Cooling Unveiled

The Inno3D GeForce GTX 980 is a beast with a triple fan cooler that takes three slots of spacing. The GTX 980 features the same specifications which we have been hearing over the past few weeks which include a total of 2048 CUDA Cores, 128 Texture mapping units, 64 Raster operation units and a 4 GB GDDR5 VRAM that runs along a 256-bit bus interface. The core clock for the reference model are maintained at 1126 MHz core and 1216 MHz boost while the memory is clocked at 7 GHz effective clock speed pumping out 224.4 GB/s worth of memory bandwidth. The card is supplied power through dual 6-Pin connectors since it has a TDP of just 165W and display connectors include HDMI, DVI and three display ports. Following is an official presentation of the upcoming GeForce GTX 980 GPU:

“The GeForce® GTX™ 980 is the world’s most advanced graphics card, powered by the new incredibly fast, power-efficient NVIDIA® Maxwell™ architecture. With twice the performance of prior-generation cards* and exciting new gaming technologies, this innovative GPU provides an elite experience on virtual reality, HD, and ultra-resolution 4K displays.

AMD Radeon Logo
Hardware

In case you’ve missed it Videocardz.com put out a story yesterday claiming that AMD may have cancelled the R9 285X. The claim is based off a tweet sent out by AMD’s Robert Hallock (@Thracks) . AMD made it quite clear in the tweet that there’s only going to be the R9 285. This basically confirms what Videocardz.com has said doesn’t it ? the 285X was obviously cancelled… Well actually no, it doesn’t and here’s why.

R9 285

R9 285X Was Never Cancelled Because it Never Existed in the First Place

The AMD Radeon R9 285X is a card that was solely conjured by media speculation, it was never announced by AMD. When the R9 285 was released in early September the media was told that the Tonga GPU actually has 32 compute units in total. Which amounts to 2048 GCN cores, 256 GCN cores more than what the R9 285 has.
Extremetech.com said the following in their R9 285 review.

AMD has confirmed to us that the new chip has 32 CUs total (with 28 functional), implying that AMD has the option to bring a new version of the core out if it chooses to do so

This obviously meant that there was going to be another card later on which makes use of the fully unlocked Tonga chip. The media assumed that this chip would be the R9 285X. It’s a fair assumption, logically there’s really nothing wrong with it except that it remains an assumption. We’ve reached out to AMD and according to them an R9 285X graphics product officially doesn’t exist.



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