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NVIDIA Unveils GTX 1080 and GTX 1070


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Last night, NVIDIA took the wrap off its latest flagship card, the GTX 1080. If the rumors were true, this card is the one to make all others irrelevant when it comes to both brute horsepower and energy efficiency. Throughout the night’s revelation and demo, NVIDIA CEO Jen-Hsun Huang kept the the crowd entertained with the latest feature sets and additional capability layers of NVIDIA’s Pascal architecture. First up we had a look at Ansel, a new package that takes in-game photography to new heights. By allowing users to take screenshots at up to 1,000 times the monitor resolution, or at up to 61,000k pixels wide, you can safely crop your game images and still retain pixel density. Additional features in Ansel are the ability to gain a 360 degree perspective via either a VR headset or through the use of an NVIDIA app and Google Cardboard on your Android phone.

VRWorks gets a boost with physically directed audio. With VR becoming a big selling point, the performance needed to deliver truly revolutionary performance has been maximized with the GTX 1080. Taking that point to another level, NVIDIA has delivered a new technology called Simultaneous Multi-Projection. This technology allows the GTX 1080 to deliver up to 16 different view points to deliver up to 90+ FPS to the VR headset by using special programming that allows the frames to be rendered in a single pass, so you do not take the performance hit rendering pixels that won’t be seen. That’s with a single GPU folks. Along that vein, users with surround monitor setups will see a tremendous benefit in the look of the peripheral screens. NVIDIA uses Simultaneous Multi-Projection technology to fix the look of the side screen images. No longer do you get stretched images and off kilter images. NVIDIA nails it with this one.

This all adds up to stellar improvements on just the GPU alone, but the added tech really helps the user experience. So, you wonder how all this happens with a new GPU? If you look at the specs, NVIDIA has dropped a bombshell with the performance specs. While this list is basic at best, you get the first GPU in the Pascal architecture family running on a 16nm FinFET node with 8GB of GDDR5X, totally bypassing HBM as the choice of memory. It does this with a transistor count of 7.2 billion, a bit shy of the GTX TITAN X's eight billion. Clock speeds viewed during the demos showed that the card was capable of reaching speeds of 2100MJz+, all while running at a cool 67 °C.

What you end up with is a card that delivers ground breaking performance at a price point that comes nowhere close to that of NVIDIA’s current flagship, the $1000 GTX TITAN X. NVIDIA will be delivering the GTX 1080 with an MSRP of $599 and $699 for a special Founders Edition card. Tagging along with its big brother, the GTX 1070 is going to be priced at $379, with the Founders Edition card hitting $449.

If FPS performance greater than a GTX 980 SLI setup in a single card is on your wish list, the GTX 1080 is the go-to at this point. Only time will tell how it performs by comparison, but from what I have seen this is a promising step. Up to twice the performance of the GTX TITAN X and three times more efficient are lofty goals that have been realized by way of the huge R&D investment. Stay tuned for more on the release of this beast that will be available on May 27, with the GTX 1070 on June 10.


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