The Origin of Nvidia GeForce 8800 GTS 512MB
In our review of the Nvidia G92 GPU we noted that the new chip seemed to contain more functional subunits than were declared for the Nvidia GeForce 8800 GT graphics card. This would help the developer easily create a product for the higher price niche than the GeForce 8800 GT 512MB to close the gap between the latter and the GeForce 8800 GTX. It could be done by unblocking the originally disabled eighth module with 16 shader processors and 4 TMUs to get a total of 128 processors and 32 TMUs. That’s the way the GeForce 8800 GTS 512MB has come up.
You can see it only differs from the earlier G92-based products in having 128 active shader processors and 32 TMUs rather than 112 and 28, respectively. It also has higher clock rates. The amount of rasterization units has remained the same at 16.
As you know, the GeForce 8800 GT 512MB proved to be as fast as to challenge the GeForce 8800 GTX in some tests. It made the weaker GeForce 8800 GTS 640MB and GST 320MB cards obsolete and their production was discontinued. However, Nvidia has decided to reuse the suffix GTS even though the new graphics card is going to be superior to the GeForce 8800 GT 512MB and deliver about as high performance as the GeForce 8800 GTX.
This similarity of names may be somewhat confusing for inexperienced users especially if the seller has got old models of GeForce 8800 GTS. You should be careful when shopping because the new and old versions of Nvidia GeForce 8800 GTS are absolutely different products with a huge difference in performance.
The cards resemble each other externally, so you should look at the amount of graphics memory: the old, G80-based, card comes with 320 or 640 megabytes of memory and a 320-bit memory bus whereas the new model, based on the 65nm G92 chip, carries 512MB of onboard memory and has a 256-bit memory bus.
The official price of the GeForce 8800 GTS 512MB is within $299-349 but the potential deficit of G92 cores may pump the price up for a while. Pre-overclocked versions are going to be even more expensive but today we are going to talk about Leadtek’s version of the card that has standard clock rates.