On the eve of this year's Computex trade show, NVIDIA hard-launched GeForce 7950 GX2 - its latest flagship video card. GeForce 7950 GX2 is different to any other video card on the market at the moment in a number of ways - the most notable being the fact that it incorporates a pair of G71 GPUs onto a single card with a single PCI-Express x16 connection.
This isn't the first time that NVIDIA's board partners have sold a pair of NVIDIA GPUs on a single 'card' - ASUS and Gigabyte have both done so on numerous occasions. However, unlike the multi-GPU-on-one-card efforts from ASUS and Gigabyte, GeForce 7950 GX2 is not a 'limited edition' product. GeForce 7950 GX2 is real, and so is its availability. Every major UK online retailer has stock from several NVIDIA board partners, and has done since launch day.
The other interesting feature that the GeForce 7950 GX2 has is the inclusion of full HDCP support. That's right, HDCP support is a feature on GeForce 7950 GX2.
We have seen numerous prototypes of HDCP and HDMI enabled video cards, but this is the first one that is actually shipping to paying customers. It's about time too, as many customers aren't going to realise that the IT industry as a whole has made a complete hash of getting HDCP-ready products into the market for customers to buy. We'll save boring you with the details - all GeForce 7950 GX2's are good-to-go in terms of the High-Bandwidth Digital Content Protection that will be required to play HD DVD and Blu-Ray content back at the full HD resolution that you've paid for.
Five doses of Green Geek pr0n GeForce 7950 GX2's
We had a look at the performance of NVIDIA's new king of the hill at the start of the month; we're back today with a round-up of five retail cards from ASUS, BFG Tech, Leadtek, MSI and XFX. We have also extended our testing to evaluate the real-world performance of GeForce 7950 GX2 a little closer, too.
Unlike most of NVIDIA's product lines, the graphics giant decided that it would tighten the reins on its partners that are shipping GeForce 7950 GX2's to customers. Only XFX was given the chance to sell GeForce 7950 GX2's with clock frequencies set higher than the NVIDIA reference clocks of 500/1200MHz. Indeed, XFX ships three different GeForce 7950 GX2 models, while all other partners ship a single model. The slowest of XFX's three models is clocked at the NVIDIA reference clocks, while the second is an Extreme Edition clocked at 520/1300MHz. The final SKU is an XXX Edition running at an impressive 570/1550MHz.