WINHEC 2000, NEW ORLEANS, LA. — April 26, 2000 — Taking a giant leap on the quest for truly interactive, cinematic-quality real-time graphics, NVIDIA Corporation (Nasdaq: NVDA) today introduced the GeForce2 GTS™, the first per-pixel shading graphics processor unit (GPU) for the desktop PC market. The combination of blazingly fast graphics processing and powerful new features, such as sophisticated per-pixel shading, provides unprecedented interactive realism never before available on the PC platform. The GeForce2 GTS will be available from a wide variety of PC OEMs and add-in-card manufacturers over the next few weeks.
Both the desktop graphics and animated film industries are striving to create spectacular, lifelike worlds. Film quality realism requires complicated per-pixel operations, previously impractical for desktop graphics which must render frames as fast as 60 times per second. The GeForce2 GTS is the first GPU with the 3D performance and enhanced feature set necessary to approach this distinct level of realism.
"Achieving Pixar-level animation in real-time has been an industry dream for years," explains Jen-Hsun Huang, president and CEO at NVIDIA. "With twice the performance of the GeForce 256 and per-pixel shading technology, the GeForce2 GTS is a major step toward achieving that goal."
The GeForce2 GTS includes the NVIDIA Shading Rasterizer (NSR), a radical new technology that enables advanced per-pixel shading capabilities. This breakthrough technology has the ability to process seven pixel operations in a single pass on each of four pixel pipelines, simultaneously.
The NSR allows per-pixel control of color, shadow, light, reflectivity, emissivity, specularity, gloss, dirt, and other visual and material components used to create amazingly realistic objects and environments. Per-pixel shading delivers the next-generation of visual realism by going beyond the limited texture mapping techniques of previous graphics processors.
John Carmack, id Software stated, "Per-pixel shading, utilizing cube environment mapping and normalized dot product bump maps look incredibly good across an entire world. Everyone at id is way psyched about developing new content with the GeForce2 GTS."
A Discontinuity in the Desktop Graphics Industry
The GeForce2 GTS achieves an astounding four pixels per clock (dual-textured) or eight texels per clock and delivers 1.6-billion texels (or 1.6 GigaTexels) per second -- more than twice the performance of the award-winning GeForce 256™ and more than three times the texture processing power of any competitive consumer graphics product. GeForce2 GTS drives the most extreme resolutions and color depths of up to 2048 x 1536 x 32 at 75 MHz.
Another key feature of GeForce2 GTS is its High-Definition Video Processor (HDVP), which enables a variety of crystal-clear HDTV solutions when combined with a mainstream CPU and a low-cost DTV receiver. The HDVP allows mainstream high-performance processors to support all 18 Advanced Television Standards Committee (ATSC) formats with a simple, cost-effective DTV receiver card.
Major 3D features of the GeForce2 GTS include:
§ Second generation transform and lighting engines
§ Hardware full-scene anti-aliasing (FSAA)
§ NVIDIA Shading Rasterizer (NSR) – multi-operation per-pixel rendering engine
§ Integrated TMDS transmitter supporting flat panels up to 1280 x 1024
§ Up to 128MB of high-speed double data rate frame buffer memory
§ AGP 4X and PCI support
§ Full support for Microsoft® DirectX® and SGI OpenGL®
§ Optimal performance for current and future CPUs from Intel and AMD
"GeForce2 GTS' support for the DirectX 7 API gives developers the capability to incorporate transform, lighting and per-pixel shading, and deliver a new era of real-time, cinematic 3D effects in Windows-based gaming", said Jason White, lead technical evangelist for DirectX at Microsoft Corporation.
"AMD is excited that NVIDIA is bringing cutting edge features to desktop graphics and AMD processor platforms, such as their new NVIDIA Shading Rasterizer in the GeForce2 GTS" said Richard Heye, vice president and general manager of the AMD Athlon™ Product Division. "We are working closely with NVIDIA to help ensure that platforms based on AMD processors maintain and advance our performance leadership. We believe end users implementing NVIDIA's GeForce2 GTS are fully optimized to harness the raw power of an AMD Athlon processor will be thrilled with the tremendous level of performance delivered to their desktops."