Published in Graphics

Nvidia Geforce GTX 1080 is the new performance king

by on17 May 2016

Reviews and full specifications are out

Nvidia has finally lifted the NDA on its GP104 Pascal based Geforce GTX 1080 graphics card allowing us to see some of the official performance numbers as well as all the specifications of the new current flagship graphics card.

Specification wise, the Geforce GTX 1080 is based on 16nm GP104 GPU with a die size of 314mm2 and packs 7.2 billion transistors. The GP104 has four Graphics Processing Clusters (GPCs), each packing five Stream Multiprocessors (SMs). Each Stream Multiprocessor has two blocks of 64 CUDA cores, adding up to a total of 2560 CUDA cores, 64 ROPs and 160 TMUs.

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According to some of the first reports, GTX 1070 will only have three GPCs enabled, leaving it with 1920 CUDA cores, 120 TMUs and 64 ROPs.

According to Nvidia, the new Geforce GTX 1080 provides 8.2 TFLOPs of single-precision compute performance. Similar as the Maxwell GM204 GPU, the Pascal GP104 GPU also comes with 48KB of L1 and 2MB of L2 cache so it will be interesting to see if the GTX 1070 will have a lower cache.

The Nvidia Geforce GTX 1080 is also the first graphics card to use the new GDDR5X memory. It comes with 8GB of GDDR5X memory and a 256-bit memory interface, leaving it with a total memory bandwidth of 320GB/s.

On its reference Founders Edition, which have been reviewed today, Nvidia decided to set the GPU base clock at 1607MHz while the maximum GPU Boost is set at 1733MHz. According to the reviews, the GTX 1080 is quite overclocking-friendly so it will be interesting to see how far will Nvidia AIB partners push their custom versions. Some rumors suggest that we might even see a 2.5GHz clocked liquid cooled versions.

The 8GB of GDDR5X memory on the GTX 1080 is clocked at 2500MHz (10GHz effective). The TDP of the GTX 1080 is set at 180W and it comes with a single 8-pin PCI-Express power connector. Display output configuration includes DVI, HDMI and three DisplayPort outputs.

The new Pascal GPU also brought plenty of new features, including the new HB (High Bandwidth) SLI, which will apparently be limited only to 2-way SLI while 3-way and 4-way SLI will be somehow unlocked to enthusiasts and available at a later date.

As noted, the new Pascal-based Geforce GTX 1080 brings plenty of new features including the fourth generation delta color compression, which should bring up to 1.7 times higher bandwidth compared to Maxwell based graphics cards and supports Asynchronous Compute, fixing the flaw found on Maxwell GPUs. Nvidia actually uses Dynamic Load Balancing for Asynchronous Compute and overlapping workloads, which should significantly improve async compute performance.

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Nvidia also brought the new Nvidia Fast Sync feature, which can be both used with G-Sync and targets FPS gamers. The Fast Sync separates the render engine from the display by using a third buffer which mans that the engine acts as if the V-Sync is off but provides no tearing as Fast Sync chooses which rendered frames will actually be displayed.

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The VR Audio is yet another new technology that should give developers a way to provide better virtual audio by simulating GPU reflections. The Pascal GPU also brings Simultaneous Multi-Projection (SMP), which provides a more precise picture quality for those using three monitors as well as plenty of new Multi.GPU modes, including the Multi Display Adapter (MDA) Mode and Linked Display Adapter (LDA) mode. The LDA Mode has two versions, Implicit LDA Mode which uses Nvidia SLI and Explicit LDA Mode, which allows developers and applications to take care of the multi-GPU mode.

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The Pascal GPU also brings the new GPU Boost 3.0 mode, which allows cards to be set in three voltage control stages and allow GPU to be even more adaptive, providing higher maximum Boost GPU clock.

As revealed earlier, the Geforce GTX 1080 is expected on retail/e-tail shelves on May 27th with a price set at US $699 for the Founders Edition and US $599 for the standard reference version while custom factory-overclocked version are expected at Computex 2016.

Performance wise, the Geforce GTX 1080 is obviously the new performance king, outperforming even Nvidia GTX Titan X. It is significantly faster than anything AMD has to offer. Most sites agree that the Founders Edition is simply overpriced and that cheaper GTX 1080 versions will most likely be a better choice. Of course, that is still left to be see as we have yet to see some reviews.

You can check out some of the reviews below.


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