According to a report published by GDM.OR.JP, it seems like NVIDIA will be launching their budget tier GeForce GTX 960 graphics card on 22nd January 2015. The alleged date, while not official seems highly possible since it has been rumored before that the card will be available to consumers in January next year. The site which has been previously accurate on several rumored stories also mentions the possible pricing of the card which may put AMD cards in a heated competition when its launched in January 2015.
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 960 Launch Alleged On 22nd January 2015
The source mentioned just three details regarding the card, all of which haven't officially been confirmed. First of all, the card is planned for launch on 22nd January 2015 and this report comes from sources and hardware market owners based in the Japanese Akihabra market. In the past and more recently, GDM has been accurate on launch dates for GeForce GTX 980, GeForce GTX 970, AMD Radeon R9 285 along with being the first site to report the driver issues which resulted in the delay of NVIDIA's unimpressive GeForce GTX Titan Z. So while it's not officially confirmed (that will remain the case until official launch), it can be said that the date is somewhat credible.
Moving on to the second bit, the site also reports that the GeForce GTX 960 will feature a single 6-Pin power connector through which it will draw power. That means a power draw of 150W when taking in consideration the PCI-E slot connector too. Is it possible? Yes, as Maxwell has already shown, its a beast at efficiency with a wattage of 165W assigned for the flagship variant. Based on the optimized architecture which the GeForce GTX 960 will feature, it's not hard to believe that the card will come with a single 6-Pin connector. However, we also can't rule out the exception of dual 6-Pin cards which will be part of the several custom variants launched by NVIDIA's AIB partners. The wattage of the card will be around a 100-120W given any case with custom variants adding more power draw to the board to pump up the cards clock speeds and provide better overclocking support and options to hardware enthusiasts living on a budget.
The last bit is the most interesting and can disrupt AMD's desktop share of their latest Radeon cards in the sub $250 market. AMD has without a doubt done a great job in slashing the prices on their high-end and most of the performance oriented lineup. I consider AMD's approach great for the consumers and NVIDIA is going to try a similar approach by launching the GeForce GTX 960 at a very competitive price in a market crowded with tons of opponents. We are talking about the sub-$250 range. The source reports a price range of about 25,000 YEN (Japanese). Convert that to US exchange rates and that gives a price of just $209.99 US. While it may not be a final price but anywhere between $200-$249 US is aggressive pricing for a product which can be highly competitive. At this price range, you can find cards like the Radeon R9 285, Radeon R9 280X and some Radeon R9 290s. The GeForce GTX 970 already tackles the Radeon R9 290X in most cases while the GTX 980 is a good leap ahead of it.
If NVIDIA manage to fine tune their GeForce GTX 960 with performance around the Radeon R9 285 or 290, then it could be a clear win for NVIDIA. A $200 US price which is least likely though I will appreciate it will be a killer card in this range however chances of that are very slim but final price would be really close to that range. While I don't have any specifications to share, their are several assumptions on what could be the GeForce GTX 960's specifications be.
Videocardz.com has already pointed out the possibility of NVIDIA's GM206 GPU core to be integrated on the GeForce GTX 960 which is the optimized Maxwell core I am talking about reducing power draw while pushing up for the clock speeds. However, chances are that the recent mobility Maxwell chips might be the DNA for the next Maxwell card entry. Some rumored specifications from Zauba were detailed a month ago but I will leave a speculated chart for you to come to the conclusion.
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 960 Rumored Specifications:
|Model||GeForce GTX 980||GeForce GTX 970||GeForce GTX 960||GeForce GTX 970M||GeForce GTX 980M|
|Clock Speed||1126/1216 MHz||1051/1178 MHz||993/1050 MHz (Preliminary)||924 MHz||1038 MHz|
|Amount of memory||4 GB GDDR5||4 GB GDDR5||2 GB GDDR5||3.6 GB GDDR5||8.4 GB GDDR5|
|Memory Frequency||7010 MHz||7010 MHz||7010 MHz (Preliminary)||5000 MHz||5000 MHz|
|Memory Bandwidth||224 GB / s||224 GB / s||112 GB / s (Preliminary)||120 GB / s||160 GB / s|