The Chinese Whispers are working overtime today, with speculation that NVIDIA will release a GeForce 7800 AGP card - all GeForce 7 series cards to date have been PCI Express.
The boys in the know are, as always, HKEPC
who got their hands on a GeForce 7800GS - a card NVIDIA say was never intended for public use. NVIDIA's Brian Burke posted the following on the nV News forums
"I want to clear up a bit of confusion about the GeForce 7800 GS PCI Express articles that have surfaced recently.
Without getting into the nitty gritty details, NVIDIA provides boards to our developers for their in house game development. These boards are meant for the sole purpose of inhouse engineering and QA. In the case of the recent GeForce 7800 GS PCI Express reviews that you may have seen, some of these developer boards were mistakenly given out to end users at an event the developers sponsored. These boards were never meant to ship in the open market.
NVIDIA has NO plans to release a commercially available GeForce 7800 GS PCI Express board. For any end users that many have received this board as a prize, NVIDIA will be happy to swap this out for a GeForce 7800 GT PCI Express board, or a GeForce 6800 GS PCI Express board, as these two boards are commercially available."
How you choose to interpret this statement is a matter of perspective. Cynics will say that PR people are paid to lie for a living, and that of course NVIDIA will deny these plans until the day they decide to release it anyway. Perhaps, but unlikely.
Eagle-eyed optimists will note that AGP was not specifically mentioned. NVIDIA may have "NO plans to release a commercially available GeForce 7800 GS PCI Express board" but that does not mean they aren't considering releasing an AGP-based GeForce 7800 GS board. Or if you really want to split hairs, there could be a card, but it just isn't based on 7800 GS...
We contacted NVIDIA's European PR staff for a statement, and quite predictably were told they couldn't comment. Which means for now, we're left with idle speculation and the hopes & dreams of everyone still on AGP.
For those who can't read Chinese, here is a rough translation of the HKEPC forum post:
NVIDIA is showcasing the new 7800 GS to select companies to sell in the future. They say it will be the successor to the 6800 GT/Ultra for AGP owners. They say it'll sport a 375MHz core clock with 256MB of GDDR3 and 256-bit memory interface. Memory at a 1000MHz. All the same technology from a G70 except it'll have 16 pixel pipelines instead of twenty or twenty-four.
I think this is great news for people with solid AGP systems looking for a card that will increase performance in newer games. A 6800 GT/Ultra, or a X800 XL/XT AGP can run you from anywhere of $280 to $450. Seeing as you can get a 7800GT PCIe for $279 at newegg.com it hardly seems fair to AGP owners like myself. Since the card is of the "GS" name like the 6800GS it'll will probobly be easy on your pockets to.
Will you be maxing out your Socket 478/462 system? Or are you saving for an SLi monstrosity?
Sincere thanks to Adrian Diaz for the translation.
How about it folks? Would you spend £150 / $250 on a new AGP card, or prefer to save for a new, PCI Express system? Cast your vote in the Discussion Thread
and let's see if there is a demand for this kind of card.