Being able to test the difference that Shaders make isn't something that we normally test or get the chance to test very often. The launch of the GTX 480, though, was full of so much drama in relation to yields and its performance. The biggest change that seemed to happen right in front of our eyes was a shift from the 512 Shaders we thought the card would ship with, to 480 Shaders. Sure, we knew it was going to cause a performance hit, but how much of a performance hit? - The decreased amount of Shaders was only one of the issues with the GTX 480, though, with other issues being heat, noise and power draw.
While the latter didn't bother me, the first two were real issues; first we saw Galaxy attack the heat and noise with an awesome looking triple fan, triple slot cooler. We then saw GIGABYTE and MSI attack the model; in the end the GTX 480 looked like a great product and to be honest it still is, especially with some of the bargain prices it can be grabbed for now from some places. We wonder, though, what would've happened if the GTX 580 we looked at today launched as the GTX 480 in March; the same clocks, but the new cooler and more importantly the 512 Shaders that we had hoped to have initially. Read more at TweakTown.