Nvidia rocked the world when they originally stated that they would release their 8800gt gpu at an msrp price of 200 – 250$, while it outperformed their already available 8800gts 320mb and 8800gts 640mb gpus (both with more expensive msrp prices) while still being available on the market.  Anandtech.com called nvidia crazy, and I actually agree with such sentiment.  Look at the high volume vendors such as newegg.com, you will find not a single 8800gt in stock at the moment, the cheapest 8800gt available for preorder upon restock is at 270$, the most expensive is at 320$, at the same time you will find the cheapest 8800gts 320mb which the 8800gt destroys in benchmarks to be priced at 300$, and the cheapest 8800gts 640mb to be priced above 340$.  Nvidia only had 50,000 8800gt’s at launch which seems obvious now as the only 8800gt I can find in stock is on amazon.com for 340$!  How on earth did nvidia think that releasing the 8800gt before getting rid of their previous 8800 gts inventory would be good for business? I don’t envy sony’s business stance in most cases, but they have always been intelligent of selling out of a give sku of a playstation model before releasing their newer sku, this is something nvidia should have done. I have the utmost respect for nvidia though, as I write this post from a 7950gt 512mb, and desire an 8800gt.  We will find ourselves in interesting transition times in the short term future though, as we see nvidia transition out the 8800gts series and transition in the 8800gt, as well as Ati transition out the hd2900xt and in with the hd3850’s.  We can only ponder the future of pricing schemes of the gpus that will be transitioned out, and when exactly the future generation of gpu’s, mainly the geforce 9 series will make a debut.

Ati/Amd hd 3850 released!

November 15, 2007

Ati/Amd has just released their hd 3850 graphics card!  The card is basically a refresh of the original hd 2900 card and is built on a 55nm process making it a much cooler running and less expensive to manufacture card. The card is roughly 10 – 20 % less powerful than nvidias recently released and highly popular 8800 gt card, yet is supposed to be released at the 220 $ price point which is significantly less than the 250 $ msrp 8800gt which has been selling in the upwards of 300$ price point.  Hopefully Ati/Amd will have plenty of these cards available, as we have seen 8800gt’s sell out faster than grateful dead beany babies as of lately.  Its very refreshing to see nvidia and ati release very powerful mid range cards, but leaves us with the ongoing question of when will the next full iteration come to market, as these recently released cards of simply refreshes of the current generation of cards.

We have all been waiting for some time now for two things, one for hd capable players, whether it be blue ray or hd-dvd to become affordable, and two for the format wars between those two formats to be resolved with a clear winner to become the new “dvd”. Toshiba has recently announced the availability of 100$ hd-dvd players, which is finally an accessible price point for the masses. I’m interested in getting one simply based on the fact that all hd-dvd players upscale existing dvd’s to 1080i, while also giving you the option to watch true high definition movies as well. Most high end dvd players ranging from 50$ – 100$ have this ability, therefore adding the ability to view hd-dvd content at that price range is very impressive. We are still waiting for a bargain blue ray player to reach the masses, most see the PS3 as the the most bargain based player as it also comes equipped with the functionality to play games. We are also waiting for the format wars to end, it still appears that many studios are publishing to one format and not the other as they have contracts with only one side. You can watch spiderman 3 (a sony film) on blue ray and dvd, yet not hd-dvd, you can watch transformers on hd-dvd and dvd, yet not on blue ray. As great news as this is having affordable hd-dvd players reach the market, we are still plauged with the question of will the movies you want to watch be available for it, and the even bigger question, will hd-dvd or blue ray win the format battle, yielding your player obselete like vhs rendered the beta max.