Nvidia quickly responded to AMD's announcement of the new HD 4850 and 4870 graphics chips on Monday, with the announcement of the 55nm GeForce 9800 GTX+.
Nvidia's new graphics chip will be manufactured using the 55nm manufacturing process, essentially matching the "advantage" of AMD's HD 4850 and 4870 graphics chips, also announced
earlier this week.
Current Nvidia processors including the just-released GTX 200 series are made on a 65nm process.
The 9800 GTX+ is described by Nvidia as an enthusiast category graphics product that will be offered at a lower price of $229 next month.
AMD's new HD 4850 and 4870 graphics chips will start at just less than $200 and range up to about $300, making the 9800 GTX+ a direct competitor.
Specifications for the 9800 GTX+ include a core clock speed of 738MHz, a shader clock running at 1836MHz, and 512MB GDDR3 memory rated at 1100MHz. The prior-generation 9800 GTX model (65nm) had a core clock speed of 675MHz a shader clock speed of 1690MHz and a memory clock of 1000MHz.
Compared to Nvidia's GTX 260 and 280 graphics processors
, the GeForce 8800 GTX+ offers support for Physics and CUDA, Nvidia's C language programming environment. CUDA technology allows programmers to offload the most intensive processing tasks from the CPU to the Nvidia GPUs.