Nvidia has delivered a first in mobile gaming by bringing the GTX 980-equipped desktop PC’s equivalent performance to notebook PCs by using a desktop (non-M) GTX 980 GPU that is validated for this new platform aimed at enthusiast notebook gamers. Previously, high-end mobile gamers have had to compromise and settle for less than desktop performance, but no longer!
The GTX 980 that is now used for Nvidia’s high end notebook platform uses the same 256-bit, 2048 core, 7Gbps memory as the GPU used in generally large desktop video cards with a similar 165W TDP. The only differences are in the “binning” – only GTX 980 chips with the best power characteristics are chosen and are validated for notebooks that have to meet Nvidia’s specifications for this new platform. And these are not special “limited edition” GTX 980s as there are a half-dozen high-end notebook models being launched by Nvidia’s partners, including by MSI, ASUS, Aorus, and Clevo.
Nvidia is aiming for notebook overclocking of both the unlocked CPU and the unlocked GPU including adjustable fan profiles which are mostly unheard of now. This means that premium components must be used by Nvidia’s notebook partners to match the characteristics of the desktop GTX 980. The power delivery has to be top notch.
7 Gbps Memory Clock
4-8 Phase Power Supplies
Unlocked Mobile CPUs
Engineered For Overclocking
Most notebooks using the mobile part, the GTX 980m, use 3-phase power while the desktop GTX 980 chosen for notebooks uses much more heavy duty 4-8 phase power supplies.
Using 4-8 phase power supplies, means that there is about 50% more peak power available to the specially selected GTX 980 over the mobile variety. It also means that the new notebook GTX 980 is about 35% faster than the GTX 980m!
Notebooks built for VR
Nvidia claims that their new GTX 980 notebook platform is the first one built specifically for VR. VR using the Oculus Rift requires about 3.75 times more processing power than for regular 1080P gaming at 60 frames per second. A GTX 980m isn’t powerful enough as the minimum video card for the Oculus Rift is the (desktop) GTX 970. In fact, Nvidia has demonstrated the new notebook GTX 980 running 3-screen Surround!
So finally, notebook gamers no longer have to compromise. We now have a new class of overclocking-friendly notebooks that match desktop performance. If you want GTX 980 performance, you just need to pick the form factor that is right for you – notebook or desktop.