NVIDIA Proclaims New Chip “The Doom III GPU”

Graphics Giant Introduces GeForce 6600-series Graphics Chips

by Anton Shilov
08/12/2004 | 06:17 AM

UPDATE: NVIDIA Corp. has corrected statement in regards the number of vertex processors in the GeForce 6600 and GeForce 6600 GT GPUs.


NVIDIA Corp. introduced Thursday its new series of graphics processing units for the mainstream market. Following its general strategy, the new mainstream parts inherit feature-set and capabilities from the company’s high-end offerings introduced earlier this year.

Doom III GPU for $199

The new lineup of graphics processing units to serve the mainstream market – the GeForce 6600-series earlier code-named NV43 – now contains two graphics processors: the GeForce 6600 GT and the GeForce 6600. Typically the Santa Clara, California-based graphics technologies developer offers three flavours of its graphics processing units: standard version, more powerful GT version and premium speed Ultra version.

NVIDIA GeForce 6600 reference graphics card

The innovative GeForce 6600 graphics processors deliver substantially higher performance compared to NVIDIA’s current mainstream products, such as the GeForce FX 5700 Ultra, and are also said to deliver higher speed than competing offerings from the arch-rival ATI Technologies, such as RADEON X600 XT.

NVIDIA proclaimed the GeForce 6600-series of GPUs “The Doom III GPU” saying that it delivers decent – GT scores around 42fps in 1600x1200 with High Quality settings – framerate in the recently released Doom III title amid affordable price.

NVIDIA GeForce 6600 GT reference graphics card

The fresh GeForce 6600 lineup also sports capabilities found in the GeForce 6800-series graphics processing units unveiled earlier this year, such as Shader Model 3.0, video engine and UltraShadow II.

NVIDIA Jumps on 0.11 Micron Bandwagon

The GeForce 6600-series graphics processing units include 8 pixel and 3 vertex pipelines and contain about 146 million of transistors. NVIDIA manufactures the GeForce 6600-series graphics processing units at TSMC using 0.11 micron fabrication process. The GeForce 6600-series is intended for platforms equipped with PCI Express x16 slots; “bridged” AGP flavours of the GeForce 6600-series may be available at a later date.

NVIDIA's and ATI's high-end GeForce 6800-series and RADEON X800-series graphics processors contain 12 - 16 pixel pipelines. NVIDIA's GeForce 6800 Ultra includes 220 million of transistors, ATI's RADEON X800 XT includes 160 million of transistors. Both high-end chips are produced using 0.13 micron technology.

NVIDIA suggests its partners among makers of graphics cards to clock the GeForce 6600 GT and GeForce 6600 graphics processing units at 500MHz and 300MHz respectively. The GPU developer recommends to equip the “GT” parts with 128MB of 128-bit GDDR3 memory operating at 1000MHz. Memory type to be used on the standard version of the GeForce 6600 is to be determined by manufacturers of add-in graphics cards themselves.

NVIDIA GeForce 6600 GT graphics processing units

The GeForce 6600 GT graphics cards should also be able to work in the so-called SLI Multi-GPU mode. SLI is a technology that enables two NVIDIA-based graphics cards to operate in a single workstation delivering higher graphics horsepower.

Available in September 2004

Graphics cards based on the GeForce 6600 GT and GeForce 6600 will be available in September 2004. Recommended retail price for the GT flavour is $199 for the USA and 229 euro for the EU. Reviews of the GeForce 6600-series are expected in weeks from now, NVIDIA said.