GeForce GTX 480 and 470 Revealed, Benchmarked

Today at PAX East, Nvidia officially debuted its much delayed, long awaited and highly anticipated GPUs built off of its Fermi architecture. We've had our own private time with the newest from Nvidia, and we're ready to tell you all about it.

When it comes to pushing pixels, the Fermi-based GF100 chips have a special advantage over the competition with hardware tessellation – something that Nvidia frequently boasts about. Check out the video below to see tessellation in action.

As you've probably already heard if you happen to hang around the rumor mill much, retail versions of the GeForce GTX 480 and GTX 470 cards won't be hitting stores until the week of April 12th (in two and a half weeks). These first round of cards, numbering in the tens of thousands, are all manufactured 'in-house' by Nvidia, so there will be little variation between products offered by different OEMs.

With all new GPUs, they're not going to be cheap. The GeForce GTX 480 will come in at $500 and the GTX 470 at $350.

Check out the full details, complete with exhaustive benchmarks in our Nvidia GeForce GTX 480 and GTX 470 review.

Marcus Yam served as Tom's Hardware News Director during 2008-2014. He entered tech media in the late 90s and fondly remembers the days when an overclocked Celeron 300A and Voodoo2 SLI comprised a gaming rig with the ultimate street cred.
  • bogcotton
    I think this about sums up how many people are feeling about this release.
  • darkgoth678
    that water looked ridiculous! what amazing visuals...

    3D rendering on the commercial level has come an amazingly long way. I hope developers take advantage of this
  • tipmen
    Too little to late sorry Nivida. They are just too hot, too expensive, and not enough performance to make up for it. I was really hoping they would pull through and bring some much need competition.
  • back_by_demand
    Well, interesting, just got through the 35 page review on Guru3D an dthe 20 page review on Tom's and I and underwhelmed.
    At the top end of single GPU nVidia has had a 6 month wait to produce a card that is $100 more expensive and only a few % better performance.
    We expected more.
    Point of order, the HD5970 is around $600, which is $100 more than the GTX480, has a bigger lead in performance than the GTX480 has over the HD5870, which it is $100 more expensive than.
    On a price vs performance comparison I would have expected to see the GTX480 one of two things, either slighty cheaper to account for its position between the HD5870 and the HD5970 ... or ... same price but slightly better performance to put it close to the HD5970.
    Yes I kinow you think I am comparing Apples with Oranges as the HD5970 is a dual GPU but as it stands until a dual-GPU GTX480 comes out (GTX480-X2?) ATI still holds the performance crown at a price which isn't prohibitive, because face it, if the prospect of paying $500 doesn't bother you then $600 shouldn't either.

    nVidia, you should have released this 6 months ago, by the time this actually hits the shops you wont sell enough before the hype for the HD6000 starts. Christmas is the big market and you know it, if people sit on their hands and wait for the early new year to grab a HD6000 you will be in serious trouble.
  • thegreathuntingdolphin
    So I am assuming overclocking these beasts is out of the question? I wonder how an overclocked 5870 vs an overclocked 480 GTX (assuming it can't be overclocked that much) would fare. You can forget overclocking the gtx 480 in SLI...
  • henrystrawn
    I couldn't find a download for this Demo. Searched Google for Nvidia Water and Terrain Demo download, with no results. Has this been released yet? can someone bird dog it for me?
  • im_thelumberjack
    Usually I am not to concerned about power draw, but these cards are ridiculous.
  • micr0be
  • shin0bi272
    With the exception of physx games (yes I have a few) and high tessellation games which we might see later on this year or early next year the 480 is a very late, very luke warm response to amd's 5xxx series. Basically what you have in the 480 is a single gpu gtx 295 with dx11 support.

    Hey Nvidia... maybe you shouldnt have disabled 6.25% of your GPU cores!
  • Hellbound
    About time we had some benchmarks. I read every word of it. And I tell you what. The GTX480 has a 10-15% performance increase over the 5870, but costs $100 more. Ontop of that draws as much power as the 5970. The only thing this benchmark assured me is that ATI should be my choice.