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GeForce GT 220 And 210: DirectX 10.1 And 40nm Under $80

GeForce GT220 And 210: Speeds And Feeds

Let's start off by looking at the major specifications of the new GeForce GT 220 and 210 graphics cards:

GT 220G210
GPU DesignationGT216GT218
Fabrication Process40 nm
Graphics Clock (Texture and ROP units)625 MHz589 MHz
Processor Clock (Shader Units)1,360 MHz1,402 MHz
Memory Clock (Clock Rate/Data Rate)790 MHz (1,580 MHz effective) DDR31,012 MHz (2,024 MHz effective) GDDR3500 MHz (1,000 MHz effective) DDR2
Total Video Memory1GB, 512MB512MB
Memory Interface128-bit64-bit
Total Memory Bandwidth25.3 GB/s (DDR3)32.4 GB/s (GDDR3)8 GB/s (DDR2)
Stream Processors4816
ROP units84
Texture Filtering Units168
Microsoft DirectX/Shader model10.1/4.1
OpenGL3.2
PhysX ReadyYesNo (not enough cores for useful acceleration)
Video Format Support for GPU Decode AccelerationMPEG-2, MPEG-4 Part 2 Advanced Simple Profile, H.264, VC1, WMV, DivX version 3.11 and later
HD Digital Audio over PCI ExpressYes
ConnectorsDVI, VGA, HDMI
Form FactorSingle-Slot
Power ConnectorsNone
HDMI version1.3a
DisplayPort1.1
Dual Link HDCPYes
Bus SupportPCIe 2.0
Max Board power58 Watts30.5 Watts
GPU Thermal Threshold105 degrees C

Because these new cards are both based on the same GT200 architecture underlying the GeForce GTX 260/275/280/285/295, we won't scrutinize the minutia too much. Rather, we'll concentrate on what makes these new cards different. For details on GT200 itself, check out our GeForce GTX 280 article here.

For a quick refresh, the GeForce GTX 285 has 10 texture-processing clusters (TPCs) with 24 individual streaming processors (SPs) or cores in each one. Each TPC also has eight texture management units (TMUs). There are eight 64-bit raster-operator partitions (ROPs), each capable of handling eight operations per clock. As a result, the GeForce GTX 285 sports a total of 240 processor cores, 80 TMUs, and eight ROPs capable of handling 64 pixels per clock, with all of the ROPs contributing to a 512-bit memory bus.

The GT216 GPU in the GeForce GT 220, on the other hand, has only two of these TPCs, each containing 24 SPs for a total of 48 processor cores. Like the GeForce GTX 280, each TPC has eight TMUs, for a total of 16 TMUs. Two 64-bit ROPs capable of handling four pixels per clock work together to give the GPU a 128-bit memory interface and the capacity to handle eight raster operations per clock. Knowing this, we can expect the GT 220 to wield about one-fifth the processing power of the GeForce GTX 285.

The GT218 GPU in the GeForce 210 is significantly smaller, with a single TPC armed with 16 processor cores and eight TMUs in total. Raster operations are handled by a single 64-bit ROP capable of handling four pixels per clock. The end result is that the GeForce 210 should be approximately one-third as powerful as the GT 220.

These new GPUs weren't designed by copying and pasting the GT200's transistors, so Nvidia's engineers added some new tricks in the process: DirectX 10.1 and Shader Model 4.1 support, an integrated audio controller supporting eight-channel LPCM audio output, and enhanced playback support for DivX, VC-1, MPEG-2, and even flash-based video streams.

Perhaps more important, these new GPUs are manufactured on TSMC's 40nm process and represent Nvidia's first 40nm commercial GPUs. This is an important milestone because, assuming good yields, this should allow Nvidia to produce more of these GPUs per die, and therefore, per dollar.

  • kalliman
    Too late for nVidia. They should release these cards 1 year ago...
    Reply
  • ColMirage
    Soooo tiny itsy bitsy!
    Reply
  • lemonade4
    This is a nice article that points out nVidia's step into the development of 40nm chips for the market even though they didn't really cause any changes in the sub-$100 video card market. They just seemed to make it even more crowded. I can't wait for the GT300 reviews though. :)
    Reply
  • Proximon
    They have a lot of loyal folks looking to save money these days, so they'll move some 220's. So fans will appreciate the cards.
    Reply
  • apache_lives
    hmmm i can see amd stomping this thing shortly with a DX11 part - kalliman is right, this is way too late in the market

    as for the gt300 - also bad news if the info i have heard is correct - 6 months away is not good for nvidia
    Reply
  • lashabane
    And to answer your question - No, it cannot play Crysis.
    Reply
  • why do i feel like mac?
    Reply
  • IzzyCraft
    apache_liveshmmm i can see amd stomping this thing shortly with a DX11 part - kalliman is right, this is way too late in the marketas for the gt300 - also bad news if the info i have heard is correct - 6 months away is not good for nvidiaThe 210 220 i'm pretty sure are OEM parts this is more like a proof/test of what nvidia can do, then a market move. They are nothing more then media cards meant for random dell's/gateway random desktops for people who don't really know what's in their computers.
    Reply
  • apache_lives
    idkwhy do i feel like mac?
    because they cant play crysis either?
    Reply
  • apache_lives
    IzzyCraftThe 210 220 i'm pretty sure are OEM parts this is more like a proof/test of what nvidia can do, then a market move. They are nothing more then media cards meant for random dell's/gateway random desktops for people who don't really know what's in their computers.
    like nvidia 8300's and 9300's - never heard of them till i worked on a few HP's
    Reply