On the eve of the HD 6800-series launch, the GPU battle is heating up to a feverish level with claims, counter claims and price drops.
Over the last 24 hours we have seen claims of everything from underhanded marketing practices to phantom benchmarks coming out of the NVIDIA and AMD camps. This may be a good time to be a consumer but it’s more than obvious the PR and marketing teams on both sides of the GPU fence are working overtime.
As many of you know, AMD will soon be releasing their HD 6800 series which could catch NVIDIA with their pants down when it comes to price / performance ratios. Early this morning the response from Santa Clara was made clear: a reduction in the SEP (suggested e-tailer price) of the GTX 460 1GB and the higher-end GTX 470. The new pricing is as follows:
GTX 460 1GB – $199 USD
GTX 470: $260 USD
The GTX 460 768MB will remain at its already-reduced price of $155 to $170 for the reference version (naturally, overclocked versions will carry a price premium) while the GTX 465 still sits at $210 to $225.
This news seems to have ruffled some feathers over at AMD. In a carefully worded email to editors, they have spelled out their belief that any price drops on NVIDIA’s part are temporary. There have indeed been more than a handful of times where “new” prices have been announced in this industry only to rebound a month or two afterwards. So we were inclined to believe AMD, especially considering they included an internal memo (in French) supposedly sent from NVIDIA’s sales team to a retailer in the EU. It states that any shipments currently in transit or shipped between October 21st and November 14th would be subject to reduced pricing but it doesn’t mention that the reduction would not be carried on after those dates. Since we cannot confirm the validity of this memo, we won’t post it for the time being.
With questions aplenty we went to the source: major retailers and distributors in Canada and the US. Our contacts’ responses were unanimous: NVIDIA’s new prices will take effect within the next 12-24 hours and have no cut-off date. NVIDIA’s own response was clear enough as well:
“These new prices are permanent” – Brandon Bell, NVIDIA
We have largely avoid posting about this “he said, she said” game being played these days but in this case, we have finally seen that it has led to lower prices for consumers.