Performance Leap: NVIDIA GeForce 6800 Ultra

NV40 Alias GeForce 6800 Ultra

Introducing the GeForce 6800 Ultra. Contrary to the original plans, the AGP versions of the card, which will be launched first, will carry a dual-slot cooling solution.

A quick look at the technical specifications of the GeForce 6800 Ultra, codenamed NV40, will make the heart of any gamer go a-flutter: 222 million transistors, 16 "real" pixel pipelines in a superscalar design, full performance when using 32 Bit floating point precision, pixel and vertex shaders 3.0, 6 vertex shader units (600 million polys/s), an integrated video processor that supports MPEG encoding and decoding in hardware, GDDR 3 memory offering a bandwidth of 35,2 GB/s, rotated grid anti-aliasing, anisotropic filtering up to 16x, on-demand real trilinear filtering - and these are just the bare essentials that only even begin to describe the chip.

NVIDIA promises the following compared to NV35/38:

  • 4-8x floating-point shader power
  • 4x shadow processing power
  • 4x occlusion culling efficiency
  • 2x vertex processing power
  • ~2x frame buffer bandwidth

And if you think that some NVIDIA PR-representative conjured these numbers out of thin air, wait for the benchmarks further along in the article. Let's just say the numbers we see there are very convincing.