Nvidia CEO Jen-Hsun Huang Apologizes For 'Miscommunication' On GTX 970 Specs

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ny-tech

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Miscommunication? I fail to see how engineering and marketing can not be in sync over the course of the 12-18 MONTH cycle of product development. Publishing deflection only makes it worse. How about a live polygraph interview? No regret over how you have tarnished your product line with inept management or collusion to defraud? Unfortunately, having you publish the words "We won’t let this happen again" does nothing to allay the fear that your company or frankly any company will twist facts and outright lie if it gets those quarterly earnings up. It was bonus season afterall. I had a GTX 970. I was satisfied with its performance. I sent it back in protest of your fraud. I filed a complaint with the FTC and the BBB. I plan to join the class actions. Heck, I even wrote Elizabeth Warren a letter. Your product came into my space and on its label was a lie. That can not stand. There should be consequences for lying, for screwing up. If you get away with it others will try to as well. You should just be happy you don't make faulty ignition switches for automobiles!
 

Steveymoo

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Well, technically, the cards did have 4gb of memory, even though 512MB of it is practically unusable. So I should imagine, if someone attempts a class action lawsuit here, they will not really get very far.
 

Maxx_Power

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If he is correct, then it is a huge lack of oversight for the Nvidia's engineering team. Apparently they do not read reviews of their own labor or Nvidia disregards what the engineers have to say. Either seems highly unlikely. Jen-Hsun apparently doesn't read reviews either.

Anyone else read about these cards supposedly crashing freezing or causing poor performance in other 3D software (non-gaming) ?
 

Onus

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I am perfectly willing to accept this answer, IF the future bears it out; that means to me a tight leash on the marketing droids.
Engineering would understand this memory design and its implications, but it is the marketing droids that would relate it to existing product descriptions without regard to any limitations.
Yes, it was a screw-up, and I don't blame people for being upset. I think it is an issue that can be mitigated in software though, and in product literature and advertising by clearly segmenting the RAM there too.
 

Corey Carroz

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I really don't get why people are getting so bent out of shape over this. There is 4GBs on the card just 512 of it is slower then the other 3.5. My guess is people who purchased the card bought it because of the benchmarks they saw and the value of the card. How the card uses the last 512 does not change the benchmarks that everyone saw or the bang for your buck for the card. The first comment by ny-tech sounds like someone that wants to find a reason to sue someone and get a free pay day. "I fail to see how engineering and marketing can not be in sync over the course of the 12-18 MONTH cycle of product development." Really??? Do you think marketing calls up the engineering department and asks to review the memory architecture because they want to make sure all 4GBs on the card is accessible at the same speed? No, they would see that the card has 4GBs and advertise the card for having 4GBs on it because it does. MS tried to do the same thing regarding the total memory bandwidth of the XBOX one (only a small subsection of the RAM is as fast as what they advertised). Was MS statement incorrect? No. Misleading yes. It is unfortunate the way all of this came to light but I don't see this as a company trying to mislead people into buying their product. If you are really this concerned over this kind of stuff, do more research before you buy,
 

RCguitarist

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So 970 owners, you would have had only 3GB of memory had they not used that process to get it to 4GB. So you got an additional free 500MB of speedy memory out of this. Would you have rather they released it as a 3GB card?
 

Nossy

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LOL. I bought the MSI 970 GTX despite knowing this. Big deal? It performs just like the benchmarks.

#1
Sales/Marketing guys often recycle old technical data sheet because they either are too lazy to update it, or the engineers have not provide an updated version after changes in specs.

#2
Also, lab performances are often times different from a production sample so they have to tweak it a little bit, which isn't always communicated to the sales team as long as the production samples met product specifications.
 

jeffbrandt

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O, all this hateful spite ! You have all been ripped off ! Really, Then just send your cards back for a refund. I will keep my maxwell. My hat is off to Mr Huang actually.
He is far more kind and humble than I am. These people at Nvidia work about 20 times harder than the couch potato gamers to keep giving us more graphics power. It is a insanely difficult job. You people have your 4 GB, now give it a rest or just build your own fab and make your own graphic cards. If you want to villanize someone I will tell you who to throw rocks at. Microsoft, thats the enemy.
 

Oldbutstillatit

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Come on, this is corporate spin jabber for getting caught with your hand in the money jar. Fake apology for a "new feature" and no mention of the other rubbish specs they lied about and hid as long as they could. He'd been better off saying "Ok you caught me but, next time I'll not be caught so easily, thanks for the money, screw you later!".
 

Onus

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This reinforces the lesson taught by the Bulldozer fiasco that Marketing needs to be called to heel. With unsophisticated users of unsophisticated products, these droids can get away with bending the truth, or misinterpreting it in what looks like favorable ways, but in this market, they can't, and it is going to hurt company reputations, sometimes badly. This is not a case of outright lies (as in the case of PSUs not good for their labels), but of a more or less accurate "label" (the card does have 4GB of VRAM) that is easily misunderstood. Ignorant, yes (marketing droids, remember), but malevolent? No.
 

MarkW1975

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No, Nvidia. You were afraid the card would not sell with less than 4GB. So you lied about the card really having only 3.5GB of usable memory. In any case, Why not just put 4GB on the card? What's wrong with the architecture that does not allow it?
 

cepheid

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For those who don't understand, the 512mb of slow ram Nvidia used to fluff their card is essentially useless it's so slow. Any basic user who runs benchmarks at 1080p will see the problems with stuttering caused by Nvidia's deceit. This is a terrible non-apology on their part and makes me less likely to purchase their products in the future. I've owned 6 Nvidia cards but I'm skeptical about purchasing from the company again.
 

jasonelmore

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the card still screams guys. a $300 970 is getting 85% of the performance of a $550 980.

It has 4GB end of story.

Stop complaining and either return your card for a full refund, or get over it. again, it has 4GB of RAM. These big two paragraph rage statements are getting tired and old.
 

Gurg

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I would rather that my dual overclocked 970 gaming cards in SLI did not cause stuttering when playing Empire TW a 2009 game on my 1440 monitor on ultra settings. Had I known of this problem I would have either bought 980s or 780Tis the price of which had dropped close to the 970s when I purchased the 970s for around $800 total or just waited for a better card to come along. I have no idea if a 3gb 780TI in SLI or even the 980s in SLI would also stutter badly in playing my game.

I was deceived and didn't get the 970 cards that was advertised. The performance of the 970s that I purchased for $800 is unsatisfactory.
 

cepheid

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@Jasonelmore Many people want what they pay for and don't look kindly on being deceived. For those of us running high resolution screens (the enthusiasts that this card is aimed at) the slow RAM causes stuttering and performance issues. It's not complaining, it's deceitful advertising and not respecting the people who purchase your product. I'm glad you appreciate your card but high-end gamers and enthusiasts should steer clear of Nvidia until they stop their cash grabs.
 

firefoxx04

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Not even going to read this crap. I don't plan on buying any of their products because I have yet to come into an issue with AMD (not that the green team does not have nice products)

This crap though makes me proud I have stayed on one side. My first question, WHY does the ram have to be separated like that? Really? the last 512mb has to be significantly slower? Why? I fail to see why that was needed for a top of the line card.

Secondly, they flat out listed the wrong specs for various other parts of the card? Why? As long as the card performs well it will sell but not f you lie about it.


If intel released some beast cpu with 1 core and it performed astoundingly well in all tasks but they advertised it as a quad core, we would be mad. Yes it still works but why lie? Especially when it is a good products.

The ram thing is really messed up. What if someone is playing a game that actually taps into the last 512mb of ram? Will that game suddenly slow way down because the ram is now bottlenecking the entire system?

Seriously unprofessional.
 

TheGame21x

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Okay, I take issue with them calling the slower .5GB of RAM on the GTX 970 a "feature", because it's not. It's also BS that they say this is the result of them coming up with a new memory architecture that they developed so that the 970 could ship with 4GB of RAM instead of 3. If it's a new memory architecture (and a "feature") developed for Maxwell, why was this not present on the GTX 980?

Oh, right. Because that would've degraded the performance of the 980 and this segmented memory design is likely by design in order to further justify the higher price of the GTX 980, along with the lower ROP count and L2 cache (which they also lied about).

But what irks me most isn't that, it's the condescending tone they take, as if we, the customers, are merely ungrateful little jerks and that they've done us some sort of favor introducing a gimped memory design. Really? That's the tone you take? After misleading customers for so long and getting caught, it's our fault for not being more appreciative? Wow. Just wow.
 

mamasan2000

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Murissokah

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While this was a flop and customers can rightfully claim they stated misleading information with their product launch, Mr. Jen-Hsun is right on.

To those claiming this cannot be a "feature" because it is not present on the 980, well, it is. The feature is the addition of a "buddy" connection that allows a memory controller to address memory on an adjacent cache block. This means that, if one L2 cache is not working and needs to be disabled (the unit will not qualify for 980 but will for 970), you can still retain that one memory controller, thus retaining a portion of memory (1GB) that would otherwise need to be disabled. While this feature is present in all maxwell cards, it is only needed in cards that have sections disabled, which is not the case of the 980. This makes the 970 closer to the 980 than it would have been in a kepler architecture and I find it a very elegant way of increasing performance without incurring higher cost.

Quite frankly, people who are at least somewhat informed will wait for a hardware review before purchasing a product, and those benchmarks won't change no matter how manufacturer markets the product.
 

larkspur

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Jen is a pretty good CEO, but the guy has a lot to learn about damage control. He waited a month and only until after a lawsuit was filed to issue his apology/clarification. And his letter is no apology - he never apologizes. Read it. Here's my favorite part:
Instead of being excited that we invented a way to increase memory of the GTX 970 from 3GB to 4GB, some were disappointed that we didn’t better describe the segmented nature of the architecture for that last 1GB of memory.
Yes, it's too bad Nvidia couldn't convince people to be excited that they bought a 4gb card that performs like a 3.5gb card. It's downright baffling. I will say though, this video featuring an "nvidia engineer" caused me to fall out of my chair: http://youtu.be/spZJrsssPA0
 

agentbb007

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I bought a 970 and this doesn't bother me, the card is fast and quiet and is hitting the benchmarks I looked at before buying. Technically the card does have 4 GB of memory. People are just so dang picky they look for anything to get upset about. I see people upset over the little silliest things everyday, I feel really bad for those people because they probably have miserable lives because of their attitude.
 
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