nVIDIA’s Fermi Finally Faces Front – Almost Page: 1

nVIDIA’s Fermi graphics card has finally seen the light of day today at CeBIT 2010. OC3D was at the incident site when nVIDIA’s armed guards delivered the much awaited graphics card to each of the manufacturer’s partners.

From MSI to XFX, every partner received the same, sealed unit. Constructed to keep out intruders and hide from the general populace what’s inside, the black box has fans covering every possible entrance.

And there’s not a word on the box about what it does… the only thing it says is SLI. But the single set of connectors at the back deliver a different story entirely. OC3D could just manage to get a shot of Fermi’s back, but thereafter, nothing else.

But we did manage to get a shot at analyzing the card’s performance, though at a very basic level. The box was running a new nVIDIA demo with a cartoon character being blasted across an empty desert on a rocket-powered railway cart. What we found was definite shearing, which means Fermi is unable to get up to the 60fps necessary for v-synch even in the demo.
We also found signs of low, or even worse, no anti-aliasing in the card, particularly around the edges of the water towers in the demo. The second half of the demo has a slowed down crash when the cartoon character shoots off the track. While the slowing down has been designed to show off the card’s “real world physics effects”, we found Fermi making a near mess of the geometry. For example, solid things are actually split in strange ways.

So much for hype! However, the real attributes of the card and its capabilities will only be revealed when OC3D Labs gets its hands on the final chip. Until then, our vote is strongly in favour of the second launch of the day – the 4GB 5870x2 graphics card from a certain competitor!

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