The NVIDIA GeForce GTX 480M is a high-end graphics card for laptops based on the Fermi architecture. As a result, it supports DirectX 11 and is produced in 40nm at TSMC. Featuring 352 cores, the GTX480M is similar to the desktop GTX 465 but with a lower clock rate. The GeForce GTX 480M is combined with 2 GB of fast dedicated GDDR5 graphics memory and the overall performance should be generally superior to the Mobility Radeon HD 5870.

The GF100 (aka. Fermi) chip was redesigned from scratch and features 3 billion transistors, assuming all 512 shaders are present. Compared to the desktop HD 5870 with 2.13 billion transistors or the Mobility Radeon HD 5870 (RV870) with 1.04 billion transistors, the GTX 480M die is physically quite large.

The mobile Fermi chip is stripped down to 352 shader cores (1-dimensional) with 32 ROPs and 44 Texture Units. The memory bus is 256 bit wide, but due to the fast GDDR5 memory, this should not be a bottleneck. The power consumption has been specified to 100 Watt TDP when taking into account the MXM board and the 2 GB GDDR5. AMD usually specifies the TDP of the chip alone, therefore this value is not directly comparable with competing Radeon cards. Still, the GTX 480M is only suited for very large desktop replacement (DTR) laptops with an excellent cooling solution. Originally, only Clevo was offering the GTX 480M in its 17" (D901F) and 18" (X8100) barebones.

The performance of the Nvidia GeForce GTX 480M is about 10% better on average than the ATI Mobility Radeon HD 5870. In demanding DirectX 11 games and benchmarks (that make use of the Tessellation engine), the GTX 480M is even faster. That means the GTX480M is the fastest single GPU graphics solution for laptops as of  early to mid 2010. Modern DirectX 10 games should run fluently in high resolutions and details with antialiasing. Only very demanding games like Crysis or Metro 2033 may need some reduced settings (see list below). Due to the DirectX 11 hardware support (and the good tessellation implementation), the Fermi based laptop graphics card should be well suited for upcoming DirectX 11 games.

As the GeForce 300M series, the GeForce GTX 480M supports PureVideo HD with VideoProcessor 4 (VP4 with Feature Set C). This means the GPU is able to fully decode HD videos in H.254, VC-1, MPEG-2, and MPEG-4 ASP. The graphics card can also accelerate Flash videos by using Flash 10.1 or greater.

The rendering cores of the Nvidia GeForce GTX 480M can be used for general calculations with CUDA or DirectCompute. For example, the encoding of HD videos can be done significantly faster than most modern CPUs by using the shader cores of the GPU instead. PhysX is also supported by the mobile Fermi chip to calculate physics effects in supported games.

Compared to desktop GPUs, the Geforce GTX 480M is comparable to a nunderclocked Nvidia GeForce GTX 465 (607/1200 clock speed) and is therefore on par with a desktop Radeon HD 5770.

GeForce GTX 400M Series
GeForce GTX 485M SLI (compare) 768 @ 575 MHz256 Bit @ 1500 MHz
GeForce GTX 470M SLI (compare) 576 @ 535 MHz192 Bit @ 1250 MHz
GeForce GTX 480M SLI (compare) 704 @ 425 MHz256 Bit @ 1200 MHz
GeForce GTX 460M SLI (compare) 384 @ 675 MHz192 Bit @ 1250 MHz
GeForce GTX 485M (compare) 384 @ 575 MHz256 Bit @ 1500 MHz
GeForce GTX 470M (compare) 288 @ 535 MHz192 Bit @ 1250 MHz
GeForce GTX 480M 352 @ 425 MHz256 Bit @ 1200 MHz
GeForce GTX 460M (compare) 192 @ 675 MHz192 Bit @ 1250 MHz
Pipelines352 - unified
Core Speed425 MHz
Shader Speed850 MHz
Memory Speed1200 MHz
Memory Bus Width256 Bit
Memory TypeGDDR5
Max. Amount of Memory2048 MB
Shared Memoryno
DirectXDirectX 11, Shader 5.0
Transistor Count3000 Million
technology40 nm
Notebook Sizelarge
Date of Announcement25.05.2010
Link to Manufacturer Page


3DMark 11 - Performance 1280x720
min: 2336     avg: 2387     median: 2387 (8%)     max: 2438 points
3DMark 11 - Performance GPU 1280x720
min: 2177     avg: 2184.5     median: 2184.5 (4%)     max: 2192 points
3DMark Vantage
P Result 1280x1024 +
P GPU no PhysX 1280x1024 +
3DMark 2001SE - Standard 1024x768
min: 37908     avg: 39907     median: 39907 (41%)     max: 41906 Points
3DMark 03 - Standard 1024x768
min: 42919     avg: 43732.7     median: 43552 (24%)     max: 44727 Points
3DMark 05 - Standard 1024x768
min: 18745     avg: 20818     median: 19867 (43%)     max: 23842 Points
3DMark 06 Standard 1280x1024 +
Unigine Heaven 2.1 - high, Tesselation (normal), DirectX11 1280x1024
33.7 fps (15%)
Windows 7 Experience Index - Gaming graphics
min: 7.2     avg: 7.3     median: 7.3 (92%)     max: 7.3 points
Windows 7 Experience Index - Graphics
min: 7.2     avg: 7.3     median: 7.3 (92%)     max: 7.3 points
Cinebench R10 Shading 32Bit +
Cinebench R11.5 OpenGL 64Bit +
- Range of benchmark values for this graphics card
- Average benchmark values for this graphics card
* Smaller numbers mean a higher performance

Game Benchmarks

The following benchmarks stem from our benchmarks of review laptops. The performance depends on the used graphics memory, clock rate, processor, system settings, drivers, and operating systems. So the results don't have to be representative for all laptops with this GPU. For detailled information on the benchmark results, click on the fps number.

Mafia 2

Mafia 2

med. 1024x768
67.1  fps    + Compare
high 1360x768
60  fps    + Compare
ultra 1920x1080
40.9  fps    + Compare
» With all tested laptops playable in detail settings ultra.
med. 1360x768
45.2 fps  fps    + Compare
high 1360x768
44.5 fps  fps    + Compare
ultra 1920x1080
36.8 fps  fps    + Compare
» With all tested laptops playable in detail settings ultra.
low 800x600
126  fps    + Compare
med. 1360x768
58.6 fps 69 ~ 64 fps    + Compare
high 1600x900
31.3 fps 34 ~ 33 fps    + Compare
ultra 1920x1080
11.8 fps 12 ~ 12 fps    + Compare
» With all tested laptops playable in detail settings med..
low 1024x768
108  fps    + Compare
med. 1366x768
64.8 fps 97 ~ 81 fps    + Compare
high 1366x768
58 fps 70 ~ 64 fps    + Compare
ultra 1920x1080
37 38 fps ~ 38 fps    + Compare
» With all tested laptops playable in detail settings ultra.
med. 1024x768
78.6 fps  fps    + Compare
high 1366x768
68 68 fps ~ 68 fps    + Compare
ultra 1920x1080
47.9 fps 51 ~ 49 fps    + Compare
» With all tested laptops playable in detail settings ultra.


med. 1024x768
68.4 fps  fps    + Compare
high 1366x768
48.7 fps  fps    + Compare
ultra 1920x1080
33.7 fps 38 ~ 36 fps    + Compare