Also, why do the model numbers follow what ATI did like 3 years ago? (7 thousands, 8, etc.). Makes NO sense.
Anyway, "A challenge" and "solve that problem"?! They create ridiculously complex pieces of hardware and they're having issues figuring out the damn names? A totally trivial problem that should've been solved 5 years ago in 5 minutes by anyone with even negligible intellect. Ooops I forgot. Marketing types generally have an IQ of 6.
Its high time nVidia and others stop this shenanigans. The other annoying practice (is this what they teach marketing MBA's in b-school?) is releasing several different revisions of a product that are totally different internally under the same product name and part number. Linksys and others love to do this. Creative goes one step further and often doesn't even give each version a different rev. number.
My friend was having a similar problem with Intel processors. Those aren't too bad, since they at least are only numbers, and the numbers go by 1st digit = series, 2nd digit = place in series, 3rd digit = revisions. No letters except q, e, and the occasional x or t to worry about.
I don't think you need to be a newcomer in order to be confused. People got fed up of fancy naming conventions when newer cards came out, that simply did not deliver..look at the Geforce 4 Ti vs. Geforce FX fiasco, to name but one example. Why not just put "LE" at the end of a card's name to signify it's a light edition? At least then the user knows such a card is aimed at HTPC or basic office/home use, so that user knows what to expect: features rather than performance. Just look at the list Homgerdog kindly supplied..who has the time to sit down and meticulously go through these cards in order to draw effective comparisons? Unless you deal with them all the time it's in one ear out the other, especially considering how fast the market changes these days.
Don't get me wrong..I like a variety of products to choose from and I never really had many issues with the drivers on nVidia products, but the naming convention has caught me out a couple of times and I have wasted money on cards I would have otherwise dropped like a stone considering they were bought on a false pretext of offering more performance than the previous generation.
To the avid user, terms like universal shaders and memory bandwidth is second nature but to the novice this vast array of different specifications must truly be bewildering.
i am used to the naming schemes, altough they are quite confussing for new people (as many friends have gone and bought 7300's thinking it bests their old 6800) or even still in this day go and buy a fx5200 becuase it has 512mb of video
i think nvidia quite made it worse when they released the G92, as the newer cheaper gpus where named 8800GT thus would make you think as a slower version of the 8800GTS.. but no it isnt and so then now they released a 9600gt and you would expect it to be as fast as the 8800GT but again it isnt and you just need a benchmark review site to really see whats faster than others, really really confussing these days
The naming system has to allow people to recognise:
- What gen the card comes from (ordered)
- If an older gen card is better than a newer gen card
- If it is a dual chip card (or quad which is no doubt on its way)
- If it is a revision to an existing gen card which also indicates performance
- Allows cards to be placed into the naming system that have not yet been thought up
- Sounds marketable