Maxwell Extends to Laptops

Last month (Display Monitor Vol 21 No 37), Nvidia introduced the GTX 970 and GTX 980 desktop GPUs, based on the new Maxwell architecture (Display Monitor Vol 21 No 8). Now, the company has ushered in Maxwell-based notebook cards: the GTX 970M and GTX 980M. Nvidia claims that Maxwell shrinks the performance gap between these cards and their desktop equivalent to 80% (Kepler notebook cards were about 60% as powerful as their desktop equivalents).

The new cards include features common to the Maxwell architecture, such as Batteryboost, multi-frame sampled anti-aliasing (MFAA), PhysX, GPU Boost 2.0, Voxel Global Illumination and Dynamic Super Resolution. Nvidia says that it has improved Batteryboost. Through OEM partnerships, more systems are now compatible with the feature. An improved governor, to enhance battery settings, has been built in. Features have also been added to Geforce Experience, so gamers can set specific game settings for use while on battery, along with a one-click optimise-for-battery button.

Both cards will work with Nvidia’s Gamestream and support UltraHD resolution via DisplayPort.

The GTX 980M has 1,536 CUDA cores and a base 1,038MHz base clock (plus boost clock). The GTX 970M has 1,280 cores, a base clock speed of 924MHz (plus boost clock). Both use GDDR5 memory (256-bit bus on the 980M, 192-bit on the 970M) and a PCIe-3.0 bus. Both are available now.