nVidia RTX GPUs

Updated on September 9, 2018
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I'm just a small time guy working a normal job as a physician assistant. My passion is building PCs and testing/reviewing PC hardware.

nVidia

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Nvidia finally introduced the highly anticipated, next generation of GeForce graphics cards, the GeForce RTX 20-series GPUs at Gamescom 2018 in Germany on August 20, 2018. During the Gamescom presentation, nVidia founder and CEO, Jen-Hsun Huang took the audience through the history and evolution of computer graphics, reaching the pinnacle of what the new nVidia cards would be targeted to, ray tracing. Ray tracing is a rendering technique that enables realistic, photo-like CGI to be rendered in real time. Per Mr. Huang, ray tracing will bring monumental change to the face of gaming and other visual effects.

Over 10 years of research and development went into the development of the RTX chip and will allegedly introduce a never-before-seen level of realism to games. The ray tracing technology will provide capabilities within these cards to render objects and environments with physically accurate shadows, reflections, refractions, and global illuminations in ways that were only seen previously in pre-recoded demonstrations, Hollywood work, or other Triple A gaming titles.

In the current landscape, ray tracing is far too powerful of an affair to be the sole engine behind graphics. nVidia has chosen to optimize its CUDA cores, using a hybrid approach which in turn takes the best of both worlds to render the scenes. In these GPUs, the optimized “raster engine” works with the ray tracing engine to allow for maximized visual quality.

nVidia RTX Graphics Cards

The new cards will also introduce a tensor core cluster which will add machine learning and artificial intelligence capabilities to the overall image processing. This will allow for intelligent predictive decision-making and other steps to improve the image while it is being processed in the internal pipeline. This combination of improvements, per nVidia, is allegedly so complex that a new metric had to be invented in which they have dubbed themselves as, “RT Operations.”

The new nVidia GPUs will finally bring about the new “Turing” microarchitecture which is the same microarchitecture that powers the professional line of nVidia Quadro GPUs. The cards are going to be called the GeForce RTX 2080 Ti, GeForce RTX 2080, and GeForce RTX 2070. There should be no expectation for exponential growth in frames per second rendered, there is substantial growth and improvement in graphical performance, and for these first-generation ray tracing products, this should actually exhibit a lot of promise. nVidia showed a number of gaming demos to the audience and treated them to a large scale spectacle of lighting effects which allowed for another level of depth to those games.

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There were not many performance comparisons discussed by Mr. Huang and nVidia but he did mention that shaders were roughly 1.5 times more efficient than the current GTX 10-series cards and if there were to be a comparison made for ray tracing capabilities, a GTX 1080 Ti would provide just 12.5% of the ray tracing capability and power of the Turing GPUs.

Huang also praised the nVidia Founders’ Edition cards. According to nVidia, these Founders’ Edition cards will come factory overclocked and will included advanced power management features. They will move away from the blower-style cards and onto dual-fan cards. This setup will produces just 20% of the noise of the Founders’ Edition GTX 1080 Ti. Also helping noise reduction on these cards is the fact that they are the first stock vapor chamber design by nVidia.

The overclocking and card design will incur a premium price however. nVidia will launch the Ti and standard flagship cards at the same time. nVidia usually released the base cards first and would later introduce the Ti model. The RTX 2080 Ti will start at an MSRP or $999, the RTX 2080 will have a price tag starting at $699, and the RTX 2070 will have an MSRP at $499. The cards can currently be preordered from nVidia and also, partner cards may still be available for preorder at places like Newegg and Amazon.

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Specifications

 
GeForce RTX 2080 Ti (FE- Current price)
GeForce RTX 2080 (FE)
GeForce RTX 2070 (FE)
Price
$999 ($1,199)
$699 ($799)
$499 ($599)
Launch
9-20-2018
9-20-2018
TBD
Architecture
Turing
Turing
Turing
Process
12nm
12nm
12nm
CUDA Cores
4352
2944
2304
RT Engine
10 Giga Rays
8 Giga Rays
6 Giga Rays
RTX Ops
78 Trillion
60 Trillion
45 Trillion
Base Clock
1350MHz
1515MHz
1410MHz
Boost Clock
1545MHz (1635)
1710MHz (1800)
1620MHz (1710)
Memory
11GB GDDR6
8GB GDDR6
8GB GDDR6
Memory Bandwidth
616 GB/s
448 GB/s
448 GB/s
TDP
250w (260w)
215w (225w)
175w (185w)

Conclusion and Final Thoughts

Keep in mind there are no real official numbers on performance at this time but an nVidia spokesman has stated that the RTX 2080 Ti will only offer 35-45% performance boost over the GTX 1080 Ti. However, that performance remains to be seen. Given this information and the current pricing of the cards, I would hold off on buying one until legitimate benchmarks come out. Stay tuned and check back often as I will get these numbers as soon as I can physically get my hands on them. Thanks for stopping by and I hope to see you next time. Have a great day.

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