The NVIDIA GTX 1080 is releasing on May 27th, and early reviews (see below) indicate it is quite majestic.
This new card will launch at $700 for reference versions, with $600 versions coming later. The card performs between 20-25% better than the $1000 GTX Titan X, the previous generation’s king. Right off the bat, it has some impressive numbers:
- It has higher clock speed (1.6GHz, as opposed to the standard ~1GHz).
- It has high VRAM (8GB — less than the Titan’s 12GB, but more than the 980’s 4GB, and the 970’s… uh… *cough* never mind).
- It has a single 8-pin power connector (as opposed to the typical 6+6 or higher that you expect in other flagship cards). The move from 28nm to 16nm die means that the increased graphical power does not come with a major increase in power draw, temperature, or noise.
All in all, it looks like NVIDIA has scored a total victory.
Of course, nothing in life is perfect, and neither is this card. The card will be pricey at an eventual $600. But you cannot even buy it for $600 right away, as NVIDIA is going to sell the reference card for $700 for a while before letting partners sell the $600 editions.
NVIDIA’s flagship reference cards have had very good cooling solutions starting with the GTX 780 and onwards, so you are still getting a great card for the $700 spent. However, the cooling designs by partners are typically better, offering better cooling and reduced noise levels.
To be fair, when you have the only single GPU card on the market that can play Witcher 3 on max settings and still get ~45 FPS on 4K, you can charge whatever you damn well please. Who is going to stop you? The similar-or-better performing alternative cards from the competition? Ha!
So what does this release mean for us at Logical Increments? As soon as the $700 reference GTX 1080 cards are available for sale, they will find their place in the Enthusiast and Extremist tiers. Once the $600 options are released, the current $600 cards (GTX 980 Ti and R9 Fury X) will probably be removed, unless they get a price cut that makes them a logical purchase again.
The new age of 16nm/14nm graphics cards has just begun. We also look forward to the release of the GTX 1070 on June 10th, with its significantly friendlier price. We are also itching to hear more info about AMD 14nm cards, and we hope that we can get great performance from each company’s new generation of cards, across all price brackets.