The press conference is over and the reviews are up; the GTX 480 and 470 from Nvidia are officially official, and only two weeks away from store shelves. Amid all the pomp and circumstance, what do gamers actually think of the new Nvidia cards?
There is a lot of positive energy on the PAX East show floor regarding the new Nvidia hardware. “It’s good to finally see Nvidia with a new series of video cards. It’s been too long, but I think it’s been worth the wait," said one bystander at the Nvidia booth (he did not want to give me his name). "I haven't had a chance to sit down at look at reviews," said John S, while playing the StarCraft II beta at the Nvidia booth, "but if the rocket sled demo is any indication, Nvidia has some impressive hardware on their hands."
Brandon, a passer-by at the Alienware booth emphatically stated "I can't wait to grab a GTX 480, or even a dual-GPU version when it comes out. AMD is going DOWN!"
Sure, new hardware is always exciting, but there's a flip-side to every coin. "I don't claim loyalty to AMD or Nvidia, but why would I pay $500 for a GTX 480 when a 5870 from AMD is $100 less for only a minor dip in performance?" said Mike G., also at the Nvidia booth. Another negative reaction came from Brian R, near the Rockstar Games booth. "I bought my 5870 about a month ago, and after seeing what Nvidia is bringing to market in a few weeks, I think I made the right choice."
And of course, to keep things even, admitted AMD fanboy Kelby said, "AMD took the price-performance crown with the 4000 series, and after looking at the reviews online, things won't be any different with the 5000 series. Plus, why get a GTX 480 when the 5970 uses roughly the same amount of power but offers much better performance?"
My two cents: competition is great, if not an absolute necessity, so Nvidia finally showing up to the DX11 party can only be good for PC enthusiasts. After witnessing the press conference here at PAX East and reading Chris Angelini's review, it looks like AMD does indeed have the performance per dollar edge for now (full disclosure: I am using a 4870 X2 right now, but I claim no loyalty to either company). However, some of what Nvidia is showing off is pretty cool, like the new raytracing demos. I'll leave it to the commenters to battle over which is better.