Nvidia is now mass producing what can only be considered weapon-grade silicon with their latest and greatest G80 GPU architecture (a.k.a. GeForce 8800). Currently the G80 is available in two mouth watering flavors, both of which are capable of blowing any existing competitor out of the water.

In fact, that could well be considered an understatement as we have already seen SLI 7900GTXs and CrossFire X1950XTX cards being defeated by a single GeForce 8800 graphics card. The GeForce 8800 GTX is the cream of the crop, featuring 768MB of on-board GDDR3 memory operating at 1.8GHz with a core clock frequency of 575MHz. And while all this sounds fairly typical of a high-end graphics card (the large memory capacity, high memory and core frequencies), the G80 architecture is like nothing we have encountered before.

The GeForce 8800 GTX brings a shift in GPU functionality and capability, moving away from the traditional pixel and vertex shaders we had got familiar with, to a collection of floating point processors also called Stream Processor Units (SPUs).

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