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We continue our recently started talk about NVIDIA’s next-generation solutions currently known as NV4x family. A German web-site HardTecs4U has managed to get NVIDIA’s roadmap unveiling loads of details concerning the upcoming graphics processor from the biggest GPU vendor. Besides NV40 and NV45, there will be NV41, NV42 and NV43 in addition another couple of NV3x chips for mainstream market segment, namely NV36 and NV36X.

Sometimes in the middle of the ongoing year NVIDIA plans to unveil code-named NV36 product to the lineup of its graphics chips. NV36 is basically an unknown chip, but I can suppose that this is a mainstream product based on the NV35 technology, just like the NV31 is based on the NV30 technology. On the other hand, NVIDIA may call the GeForce FX 5600 Ultra clocked at 400/800MHz as the NV36, just like the company did with the GeForce2 Ultra, renaming it to NV16 from the original NV15 (GeForce2 GTS) after boosting core and memory clocks substantially. In the fourth quarter of this year or in the first quarter of 2004 NVIDIA also reportedly plans to launch an improved version of the NV36, the so-called NV36X.

Just like I thought, the code-named NV40 will hit the road in Q4 2003 or Q1 2004. As always, the high-end GPU will be aimed on the enthusiast market, whereas its companion chip available in the same timeframe - the NV36X - is intended for performance market.

The NV40 is rumored to be twice as fast compared to the NV35 and will probably be made at IBM’s East Fishkill facilities this Fall. It has chances to come by Christmas, though, it may become available only early next year.

We may expect NV36X and NV40 to support PCI Express, although I am not sure if these chips will ever need it.

In the end of the second quarter 2004 all NVIDIA’s NV3x graphics processors will be replaced with variety of NV4x solutions. The NV36X will be replaced by NV41, whereas the GeForce FX 5200 aka NV34 will be succeeded by the NV43. There will be also the NV42 to come in the middle of 2004, but I am not sure what it is. In fact, this may be either a faster or a slower incarnation of the NV43. Also by the end of the second quarter next year NVIDIA will set another enthusiast chip to go – the NV45.

All NV4x chips except NV40 support only PCI Express interconnection, so, poor you if you just got an AGP 8x platform.

Please keep in mind that the information is preliminary and is subject to change. Besides, it comes from an unofficial source over here.

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