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Nvidia GTX 580M top-end laptop graphics unveiled; already showing up in Origin and Alienware systems

The Alienware M18x and Origin EON now offer Nvidia's newest high-end laptop GPU, announced today.

Alienware M18x: upgraded with the GeForce GTX 580M.
Alienware M18x: upgraded with the GeForce GTX 580M. Dell

Today Nvidia unveiled its latest high-end laptop GPUs, the GTX 570M and 580M. That's not a huge surprise: the new GTX cards round out the "500 series" of GT and GTX graphics that have been available throughout the year. One feature Nvidia's particularly touting is the GTX 580's Optimus automatic switching, which should offer up "5 hours of battery life in Facebook," in case you measure your juice through social networking.

Nvidia promises that the GTX 580M is the fastest laptop graphics card anywhere, ever--the benchmark comparisons were leveled against the AMD Radeon 6970M. That bears watching, but at least know for now that the GTX 580M will be available on the Alienware M18x in single- or dual-card configurations and soon on the Alienware M17x, as well as on Origin's EON laptops, the Clevo P170HM3 and P270WM. MSI's GT780R gaming laptop will feature the slightly stepped-down GTX 570M.

We'll report more when we have a GTX 580M laptop to test, but here's one question that bears answering: who's gaming with top-end graphics cards?