It’s a tough question and really you have to think if you’ve waited months and months for the GTX 400 series what is another month? At the moment we know the product is going to launch at PAX 2010 on March the 26th.
While it’s clear that come March 26th, if you’re lucky enough to be at PAX 2010 you’ll have a chance to play with the GTX 470 and GTX 480. It’s not so clear that I’ll be playing with it at that stage for the simple reason no one has been able to lock in a sample with most companies not wanting to send reference cards.
So will we see reviews as the stage show kicks off? We should. I’m not sure how many you’re going to see but if that is the official launch date as NVIDIA suggest then reviews should be going up the same time.
Paper launches are long gone, no longer do we have an NDA lifted without the ability to buy the product. Saying that though we do have an NDA lift which is then followed by extremely short supply. Is the GTX 400 series going to hold this fate as well? Absolutely, and not just because of the delays we’ve had and issues we’ve heard. High end products are just in short supply come launch day, sure the HD 5800 series was available but you did pay a premium to own one and it wasn’t long before you got an email saying you’re purchase will be sent out in the next batch.
To be honest though if you’ve held out for a new video card this long though another month isn’t going to kill you. Well I hope not anyway. Waiting is ultimately win win for you.
For starters if the price we received on the GTX 470 is right with it lining up with the HD 5850 yet it offers performance better then a HD 5870 this will become a great buy. Throw in the fact you have CUDA, PhysX, 3DVision and those other features and you’ll probably find yourself extremely happy.
Secondly if you’ve got the money and the GTX 480 does become the top single GPU card on the market you’ll be glad that you’re the owner of that model.
Thirdly, if NVIDIA do decide to be semi aggressive with pricing then ATI will probably become hyper aggressive, to think they would’ve had almost 6 months worth of good profits from the HD 5800 series, if they have to drop the % a bit now who cares. The HD 5800 series has a better run then most other models in recent years.
Finally stock is pretty good these days on the HD 5800 series, but between now and March 26th we should see the 2GB model of the HD 5870, the HD 5830 will launch and more stock to help bring price a little lower. So in the event the GTX 400 series does suck you’ll be able to pick up a HD 5800 series card for a good price.
If you bought a HD 5800 series in the first month or two of launch you’ve been able to enjoy the best video cards on the market for months. Even if the GTX 400 series does come out and spank the HD 5800 series you’ve had an awesome run, and at the end of the day the release of the GTX 400 series isn’t going to make the HD 5800 series performance worse, it’ll simply make it look worse. Personally while I think NV can make it look worse in the performance numbers I think that the ATI models will still retain the massive value for money perception.
Wait, Don’t Wait; it really doesn’t matter. If the GTX 470 perform the same as the HD 5850 and the GTX 480 performs the same as the HD 5870 it has to be cheaper, if they’re faster they can only be slightly more expensive.
If you want something that’s budget orientated though then you’ve got the HD 5700 series and below. Considering NVIDIA hasn’t shown us anything about mid range cards if you’re tossing up between getting a HD 5770 or lower or waiting for NVIDIA; do yourself a favour and don’t wait. Go buy a new card now and enjoy the power from it today.