Nvidia's upcoming replacements for the GeForce 9M notebook graphics products have now gone public with the advent of the latest beta ForceWare driver package. Some initial versions of the graphics cores aimed at mobile
computers are already listed by Asustek and the other top-tier graphics cards manufacturers.
However, the new driver package unveils the fact that some of the new models will replace the older 8M series of graphics chipsets that ship with a broad range of mobile computers. The most important novelties are the advent of the mid-range GeForce 9600M GS and GT chipsets, that are expected to ship with the systems that are currently powered by 8600M chips.
Most likely, the first notebook offerings to undergo the graphics facelift are the Dell XPS M1530 and Apple's MacBook Pro, two high-end notebook PCs.
The other chipsets on the slate will probably reach both the high-end and budget mobile market. For instance, the 9700M chips is slated to immediately replace the older 8800M-based offerings in mid-range and entry-level systems delivered in the Gateway FX series or the HP Pavilion HDX.
The drivers also unveil the presence of a high-end workstation graphics processor, called the Quadro FX 3700M, but the details about it are still scarce. Mainstream users will be able to enjoy the new offerings in the GeForce 9200M, 9300M, and 9400M series, that are expected to come at an affordable price, although the company has not announced anything officially.
The new series of graphics chips from Nvidia will kick in as an incremental upgrade, and will boost the graphics performance as compared to the earlier 8M parts. The 9M series will be built on the 65-nanometer manufacturing process, that will account for smaller chips with lower power requirements and minimized thermal envelopes.
Although the company has not announced a release date for the new series of chips, they are expected to arrive in early June, which means that they will be ready just in time for the Intel Centrino 2 homecoming.