Up close with Nvidia's latest-gen graphics tech: the GeForce GTX 780

But Nvidia hasn't done anything to change the GPU, or any of the power components - as was the case with the change from GTX 480 to 580 - but it has introduced a brand new level of graphics memory to the mixing pot and more of it to boot. The GTX 770 will have a full 2GB of GDDR5 that's running at a headline-grabbing speed of 7Gbps. So yeah, it should easily outpace the GTX 680, and, according to Nvidia, it's either on par or better than a HD 7970 GHz edition.

Costing up

GTX 780 bare

Pricing is inevitably going to be key for these two new cards, and that's likely to be our main concern with them. At the time of writing Nvidia hasn't released final prices, but did confirm to me the GTX 780 was going to come out pricier than the GTX 680 was at launch.

This is simply feeding into the ever-growing cost of the top-end cards in a generation. I wouldn't expect to get much change out of £450, but I also wouldn't be surprised to see some manufacturers' SKUs coming in closer to £500.

The GTX 770 is again likely to cost more than a GTX 670, but given that it's going to be level in performance to the HD 7970 GHz I'd hope that it wouldn't be much more than £300. I'm not going to hold my breath though. Manufacturers are going to be allowed to mess with the cooling and introduce their own versions this time around, despite the Titan-esque aesthetic the reference cards are sporting.

Whether many will is another question. The chromium plating and general design of both the GTX 780 and GTX 770 (it's not going to filter all the way down to the GTX 760, sadly) is still quite beautiful, and most AIBs' cooling solutions are likely to look amateurish by comparison.

By contrast though, AMD is unlikely to have its new cards - themselves probably still using AMD's existing architecture - until Q3/Q4 this year, "by which point it wont be too long until Maxwell - which is a very exciting new architecture," says Berraondo with a final tease.

Before then, why not check out our 14 best graphics cards for every budget?