On the previous pages you can see a comparison between the new GeForce GTX 260 with 216 processors and a myriad of video cards. We’d like make here a summary comparing this new release to the “old” GeForce GTX 260 with 192 processors and to its main competitor, Radeon HD 4870.
The addition of 24 processing engines made the new GeForce GTX 260 to be a slight faster than the older model on several scenarios – but not on all of them. On Fallout 3 both cards achieved the same performance, on Unreal Tournament 3 the new card was faster (7%) than the old model only at 2560×1600, and on Call of Duty 4 and FarCry 2 both cards achieved the same performance level at 1680×1050, with the new model being 3% faster at 1920×1200 and 5% (CoD 4) or 6% (FC 2) faster at 2560×1600.
The new GTX 260 was up to 7% faster on 3DMark06, up to 12% faster on 3DMark Vantage, up to 16% faster on Crysis and up to 5% faster on Half-Life 2: Episode Two than its older version.
Radeon HD 4870 had the advantage compared to the old GeForce GTX 260, but now the new GeForce GTX 260 with 216 cores is the one that has the advantage. Radeon HD 4870 was faster than GeForce GTX 260 with 216 processors at only one game, Half-Life 2: Episode Two, where it was between 15% and 18% faster.
GeForce GTX 260 with 216 processors was between 6% and 29% faster on Fallout 3, up to 14% faster on Far Cry 2, between 4% and 8% faster on Unreal Tournament 3, up to 15% faster on Call of Duty 4, between 4% and 16% faster on 3DMark Vantage and up to 4% faster on 3DMark06. On Crysis it was between 6% and 13% faster with no image quality enhancements enabled, but when we maxed out image quality both video cards achieved the same performance.
Then comes pricing. Both cards can be found on the same price range (USD 250-290), but some Radeon HD 4870 can be found a little bit lower at USD 230, but probably it is just a matter of time for the prices of this new release to drop a little bit as well.
Unless you can find a Radeon HD 4870 being sold today below USD 230 the new GeForce GTX 260 with 216 cores is certainly our recommendation if you have between USD 250 and USD 290 to spend on a video card.
Of course if you are looking for at more affordable price range there are several other options on the market that will give you a better cost/benefit ratio, like Radeon HD 4850 and Radeon HD 4830, depending on your budget.
In summary, it is clear to us that NVIDIA successfully “fixed” the GeForce GTX 260 to correctly compete with Radeon HD 4870.
The only question now is how they and their partners will promote this new product, since it has the exact same name of an older and slower product. We simply hate when manufacturers release different products using the same name. It wouldn’t be easy to consumers if they released this product as GeForce GTX 261 or something like that?