Nvidia Releases GeForce GTX 580M Laptop Graphics Chip

The GTX 580M offers up to 384 CUDA cores running at 1.24GHz and up to a 1.5-GHz memory clock. The 256-bit memory interface connects to 2GB of GDDR5 memory. Along with the faster speeds, Nvidia has maintained many of the features already found in the GeForce GTX lineup, including support for the Nvidia Optimus technology that prolongs battery life.

Optimus technology allows the laptop to switch between discrete and integrated graphics processing, depending on the requirements of specific workloads. Alienware will include Optimus alongside the GTX 580M in its M17x notebook, a move that, “will deliver 5 hours of battery life in Facebook, and 100 frames per second performance in Call of Duty: Black Ops,” according to Nvidia.

“We think we have more than one thing that really sets us apart, but if I had to pick our biggest weapon, it would be the Optimus technology,” said Brian Burke, a public relations manager for Nvidia.

Additional features of the GTX 580M include the Nvidia SLI technology, which allows two chips to work together for performance improvements, and a reported six-fold increase in tessellation performance over the competition. Tessellation performance is the ability of the GPU to render the complex geometry built into many games.

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Nvidia also released the GeForce GTX 570M GPU, which is a toned down version of the GTX 580M with 336 cores and up to a 1.15-GHz core clock. The chip is 20 percent faster than the previous model it replaces, according to Nvidia.