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Budget gamers, get set to spend – Nvidia’s GTX 960 said to launch in late January

It doesn’t take a psychic to anticipate next week’s Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas will be, as always, brimming of sizzling hot new PC gear. Ultra-high-res monitors, slimmer than ever convertible laptops, Lilliputian mini desktops, you name it, the expo will bring them to light.

One thing you probably shouldn’t hold your breath for, though, is a sneak peak at next-gen AMD or Nvidia GPUs. Worse, postponed current-gen graphics cards like the elusive GeForce GTX 960 are expected to dodge a CES 2015 announcement.

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Once rumored to launch alongside the quicker GTX 970 and 980 in September 2014, the Maxwell-based budget contender encountered a number of mysterious hiccups on its way to market. Some say it was simply held up by robust 970/980 sales.

At the end of the day, we’re not particularly interested in the reasoning behind the delays. We just want the GeForce GTX 960 around, and the latest ETA suggested by “inside sources” is January 22. That’s awfully specific, isn’t?

Assuming this Hermitage Akihabara somehow scored the right, legit, extremely precise scoop, odds are the GTX 960 will be priced at around 25,000 Yen in the Land of the Rising Sun. That’s roughly $210, so hitting the sub-$250 mark stateside feels feasible.

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A 28 nm product, obviously, the 960 is rumored to make use of a new GM206 GPU architecture. Energy efficiency and low noise should be the mid-range GPU’s main concerns, but raw speed won’t be neglected altogether either. In fact, we have reason to believe the middling Maxwell family member will be a match for Kepler’s upper tier GTX 770.

Related: Nvidia GeForce GTX 960 review