Nvidia to launch Quad-SLI on 22 March

Chicago (IL) - Nvidia will launch its Quad-SLI technology, which will enable to run four GeForce graphics chips in one computer system, on 22 March, TG Daily has learned. Quad-SLI will be launched with 7900 GTX graphics chips, which will be announced on 9 March, sources indicated.

Dual graphics cards won't be enough to secure bragging rights at LAN parties in the near future. Nvidia is gearing up to launch Quad-SLI, based on the upcoming 7900 GTX graphics chip with 512 MB GDDR3 memory. Users who will be able to buy one of these - as it appears - initially very rare systems will have access to a new graphics performance level that is supported by a whopping 1.3 billion transistors.

A Dell XPS Renegade system was the first Quad-SLI system to be demonstrated in public at CES in January. Apparently, Dell will not be only system builder to launch a Quad-SLI system on 22 March; we expect enthusiast PC manufacturers to have systems available - in limited quantities - as well. We are told that Quad-SLI, which is based on a 2x2 graphics card system, will only be available through the purchase of a new PC and not in the retail market. Sources indicated that such computers won't be cheap: Expect prices for a Quad-SLI system to begin at about $6000.

Besides a graphic system that will cost more than $2000 by itself, these new machines will also include a more capable power supply with an output of at least 850 watts on the lower end and 1000 watts on the high end. Interestingly, these power supplies are not just expensive at around $400 per unit, they apparently are also nearing the limits of the power capability in some residential buildings, as some users have reported to us. Especially users who live in older houses may want to check, if their current power system supports a 1000 watt computer system.

Other than the 7800 GTX 512 cards that were on display in Dell's Renegade system, Nvidia will use the new 90 nm G71 chip generation for the introduction of Quad-SLI: The 7900 GTX will debut on 9 March with a clock speed between 650 and 700 MHz. We expect prices for regular cards to remain in the current framework of about $500 to $600.