Connect with us
Advertisement

News

Nvidia unveils GTX 1080, kills Titan X on price and performance

Nvidia lands a critical hit in the GPU wars – and effectively kills its GTX Titan – with the astonishingly fast, low-power, and (relatively) cheap GTX 1080.

Published

on

Nvidia lands a critical hit in the GPU wars – and effectively kills its GTX Titan – with the astonishingly fast, low-power, and (relatively) cheap GTX 1080.

Moore’s law states that the number of transistors in an integrated circuit doubles every two years. What does that mean? In purely simplistic terms, it means that newer versions of complex things – like processors, or in this case graphics cards – are twice as beefy as their forebears approximately 730 days down the road, without needing to get any bigger. In reality it’s not always a perfect fit (and often the bloat of software requirements can offset the benefits of architectural improvements) but it’s been a wonderful yardstick over the years.

TL;DR: Technology gets better. Fast. Really bloody fast.

Forget the shallow, petty console wars; the real video game arms race is in GPU technology, and Nvidia is going all out in the war – and the practical application of Moore’s law – with its unbelievable new GTX 1080 graphics card.

Advertisement

This is ostensibly what happened with Nvidia’s GTX 1080 release announcement:

Nvidia: You want a card that’s more powerful than the best card that went before it, the GTX Titan behemoth currently atop the graphics card pyramid?
Consumer: Great! That would be amazing, actually!
Nvidia: How much more powerful do you want it? Will twice as powerful do?
Consumer: Sweet! Sounds like it could be expensive, though.
Nvidia: So, erm… what do you think you’ll have to pay for this GPU Shangri La?
Consumer: At least the same as the Titan X? One and a half times? Twice as much…?
Nvidia: How about somewhere around half the price? Does that work for you? Oh, and did we mention it’ll use about half the power of the power too? Hello…? Are you still there…? Did you pass out…?

Advertisement

The new GTX 10 series cards, including the flagship GTX 1080 and the still-an-amazing-sounding-card-and-not-really-a-compromise-at-all GTX 1070, are based on 16 nm fabrication and a die size of 294 mm2 – both roughly half the respective values of the GTX Titan series card, the reason behind that reduced power consumption – yet still maintaining around the same number of transistors, roughly 50% higher clock speed, and a 33% increase in preliminary FLOPS figures.

What do FLOPS mean? Prizes? No, not prizes. FLoating-point Operations Per Second (calculations of complex numbers) is a measure of computational power more usually assigned with super computers and rendering farms, but given the tremendous improvements in the latest generation of Nvidia cards – the GTX 1080 and 1070 – are derived their latest Pascal architecture for computational workloads, it’s nice to pay a little bit of respect to the driving force behind our latest super-toys.

Here’s how that looked at the reveal presentation:

Nvidia GTX 1080 graph

And this is all we could think of when that PowerPoint slide graced the big screen:

Friends 'The lines all go up, so I'm happy'

Presumably some lower-end models around the GTX 1050 and GTX 1060 mark will follow, but not so close to the still relatively recent GTX 950, but for now we’ll have to make do with the ludicrously exciting, best thing to happen to graphics cards in a long time, absolute giant of a card that is the Nvidia GTX 1080 (retailing at $599 US) and it’s still bigger than all the other kids in the schoolyard little brother, the GTX 1070 (retailing at $379).

Advertisement
Advertisement
Advertisement

It also looks really rather beautiful, in a Christopher Nolan’s Batmobile kind of way. You know, if you’re into that kind of thing. Until the OEMs get hold of it…

Nvidia GTX 1080 Batmobile


Pick up the GTX 1080 founders edition direct from NVidia’s store, or the third party GTX 1080 – with improved overclockability and funky coolers – from Amazon.

Want more neat stuff?

If you want to keep abreast of the latest news, features, reviews, guides, and sales, we can send all our latest articles and great content straight to your inbox. You know, collated together, once or twice a week, in a newsletter. We wouldn't send them one at a time – that would be weird and annoying!

Recommended for you

Tom is an itinerant freelance technology writer who found a home as an Editor with Thumbsticks. Powered by coffee, RPGs, and local co-op.

Advertisement

Latest from Thumbsticks

Rainbow Six Siege - Xbox Rainbow Six Siege - Xbox
News5 hours ago

Three great games are free to play on Xbox this weekend.

Xbox Game Pass Ultimate and Xbox Live Gold members can play three new games for free until Sunday.

Xbox Games with Gold - Xbox Series X Xbox Games with Gold - Xbox Series X
News1 day ago

Here are the Xbox Games with Gold for December

In case you missed it, here are the four games available through Xbox Games with Gold in December 2021.

Pac-Man - Birth of an Icon cover Pac-Man - Birth of an Icon cover
Reviews2 days ago

Pac-Man – Birth of an Icon review

Pac-Man - Birth of an Icon details the meteoric rise of Namco's groundbreaking arcade game in glorious, vivid detail.

13 Sentinels: Aegis Rim 13 Sentinels: Aegis Rim
News2 days ago

13 Sentinels: Aegis Rim Nintendo Switch release date confirmed

13 Sentinels: Aegis Rim, the critically acclaimed strategy adventure game from Vanillaware, will be released for Nintendo Switch in April...

Icarus - Dean Hall Icarus - Dean Hall
News3 days ago

Icarus from DayZ creator Dean Hall is out this week

Icarus is the latest title from Dean Hall's post-DayZ studio. Will it fly too close to the sun like DayZ...

New PlayStation Store releases - PS4 - PS5 New PlayStation Store releases - PS4 - PS5
News4 days ago

New PlayStation Store releases: November 29 – December 3, 2021

This week's lineup of new PlayStation Store releases for the PS4 and PS5 includes Evil Genius 2: World Domination and Solar...

New Nintendo Switch eShop releases New Nintendo Switch eShop releases
News5 days ago

New Nintendo Switch releases: November 29 – December 3, 2021

Big Brain Academy: Brain vs Brain and Danganronpa Decadence headline this week's lineup of new Nintendo Switch eShop releases.

New Xbox One game releases New Xbox One game releases
News6 days ago

New Xbox releases: November 29 – December 3, 2021

Upcoming Xbox Series X|S and Xbox One releases include Evil Genius 2: World Domination, Beyond a Steel Sky, and Chorus.

Advertisement