Graphics Cards

NVIDIA Unveils Newest High-End GPU

23 Jul, 2013 By: Nancy Spurling Johnson

Quadro K6000 said to offer unprecedented levels of real-time photorealistic visualization.

At the SIGGRAPH International Conference and Exhibition on Computer Graphics in Anaheim, California, NVIDIA today unveiled what it is calling a new flagship GPU (graphics processing unit) for visual computing. The NVIDIA Quadro K6000 features the world’s largest and fastest graphics memory to date, according to the company, and will dramatically improve real-time photorealistic visualization, analysis, and animation.

Measuring 4.4” × 10.5”, the NVIDIA Quadro K6000 is said
to feature the world’s largest and fastest graphics memory.

Using the NVIDIA Quadro K6000, organizations such as Pixar and Nissan to tackle projects of unprecedented size and scope, NVIDIA reported. Product designers can reduce model-preparation time in advance of design reviews and support faster photorealistic visualization of entire models. Architects  will benefit from improved high-end visualization of complex building models.

Andrew Cresci, general manager for Manufacturing Industries at NVIDIA, told Cadalyst, “Doing photorealistic visualization in real time is such a big deal; there’s a huge pent-up demand for it. The K6000 is a breath of fresh air for those at the high end.”

The company also launched a new line of professional graphics GPUs for mobile workstations and, meanwhile, Lightworks announced developments that aim to broaden the reach of NVIDIA iray rendering technology.

NVIDIA Quadro K6000

The Quadro K6000 GPU is based on the NVIDIA’s fast and efficient Kepler architecture. Key performance features and capabilities include:

  • 12GB ultrafast GDDR5 graphics memory, which lets designers and animators model and render characters and scenes at unprecedented scale, complexity, and richness;
  • 2,880 streaming multiprocessor (SMX) cores, which deliver faster visualization and compute horsepower than previous-generation products;
  • support for four simultaneous displays and up to 4k resolution with DisplayPort 1.2;
  • ultralow latency video I/O and support for large-scale visualizations; and
  • a power-efficient design.


The NVIDIA Quadro K6000 GPU reportedly
delivers five times higher compute
performance and nearly double the graphics
capability of its predecessor, the Fermi
architecture–based Quadro 6000.

Advanced Product Design Visualization

Product designers today are using many of the same tools as amimators who must render highly complex characters and scenes, Cresci said. In the past, for example, vehicle designers “had to work with chunks of the car model to view it in real time, and no interior [was rendered] in exterior visualization shots. Now, that is changing and having great impact on people making decisions.”

Today, it’s a “night and day difference,” Cresci continued. “Designers are starting to make decisions now based on the virtual model. … This year, for the first time, I heard of a major automaker that made a decision based on the virtual model. The board used the virtual model, without going to a clay or other physical model. It’s a real big deal.”

Dennis Malone, an associate engineer with Nissan North America, said, “[With 12 GB of memory,] I am now able to load nearly complete vehicle models into RTT DeltaGen and have stunning photorealism almost instantly. Instead of spending significant time simplifying the models to fit into previous hardware, we can now spend more time reviewing and iterating designs up front, which helps avoid costly changes to tooling.”

This image from Dassault Systemes’ CATIA features an airplane interior complete with global
illumination, tabletop and glass reflections, and exterior visualization — all enabled in real time
by the new NVIDIA Quadro K6000 GPU.

Pricing and Availability

The NVIDIA Quadro K6000 will be available beginning this fall from Dell, Lenovo, and other major workstation providers; from systems integrators including BOXX Technologies and Supermicro; and from authorized distribution partners including PNY Technologies in North America and Europe, ELSA and Ryoyo in Japan, and Leadtek in Asia–Pacific.

The NVIDIA Quadro K6000 will have roughly the same cost and technical requirements as the Quadro 6000, Cresci said. More information about Quadro GPUs is available on the NVIDIA Quadro web site.

New Mobile Workstation GPUs

The NVIDIA Quadro K5100M is the new flagship professional graphics GPU for workstation notebooks. It delivers the highest levels of performance and graphics memory available on notebook platforms, the company reported, and anchors a new line of workstation notebook GPUs that includes the Quadro K4100M, K3100M, K2100M, K1100M, K610M, and K510M.

Lightworks and NVIDIA Team Up  

Also at SIGGRAPH this week, rendering toolkit developer Lightworks announced it has formed an exclusive reseller relationship with NVIDIA and has released Iray+, a GPU ray-tracing rendering SDK built on NVIDIA iray 3D rendering technology. Iray+ aims to broaden the accessibility of iray to companies of all size and types requiring high-end visualization for design and simulation applications.

Dave Forrester, Lightworks CEO, said, "Our new product launch and relationship with NVIDIA uniquely positions us to bring the power of iray in an easy-to-use format to 3D designers and engineers. I feel this is a pairing set to shake up visualization in the CAD industry, with NVIDIA's exceptional iray rendering technology combined with Lightworks’ industry-leading expertise in bringing high-end visualization to the masses. We're excited to be exclusive resellers of iray and are perfectly placed to deliver further releases, including cloud- and grid-based solutions, with Iray+ in the near future."
Bob Mayer, chief operating officer of IMSI/Design, a long-time Lightworks customer, added, "The introduction of the Iray+ technology alongside the existing Lightworks products is an exciting development that will provide additional visualization technology to our users; we're looking forward to seeing what products Lightworks develops with this new GPU-focused ray-tracing technology.”

About the Author: Nancy Spurling Johnson

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