Nvidia’s GF110 chip, the one behind the Geforce GTX 580 and 570 is a massive 520 square millimetre core and has some three billion transistors. AMD’s chip is some 30 percent smaller in size and it has some 15 percent fewer transistors than Nvidia’s which is impressive. In the end Nvidia looks like a slightly faster solution, but its core is bigger.
Nvidia’s chip is more complex and more expensive to produce. It ends up with better shader performance, but overall AMD did a good job of making something that is close to the GTX 580 in terms of performance and significantly faster than the now obsolete GTX 480, all with fewer transistors in a smaller package.
The chips are ready and the cards will be available on Tuesday the 15th of December in Europe and in the US in the night of 14th of December. We are not sure about the price as AMD will finalize its pricing literally at the last minute, but we guess it will be less than Nvidia wants for GTX 580 and the recently introduced GTX 570.