Nvidia’s new $700 1080 Ti in theory beats $1200 Titan X

With Nvidia‘s long dominance of the top end of the graphics card market potentially under threat from AMD’s upcoming RX Vega line, they’ve just offered a speculative riposte. The Nvidia GTX 1080 Ti is a buffed-up take on the year-old 1080, and though conventional wisdom (i.e. Nvidia naming traditions) would place it between that card and their $1200 Titan X, the claim is that their $700 new’un actually beats the X.

Official numbers – and that is all they are, until reviewer and end-user benchmarks arrive – claim that the Ti is some 35% faster than the vanilla 1080. Nvidia also claim that it will outperform the Titan X, despite having 1GB less on-board RAM (it has an unorthodox 11GB rather than 12, but still up from the 1080’s 8) and on-paper reduced memory bandwidth.

This is due to a combination of 10% faster memory and a boost clock that jumps slightly from the Titan X’s 1.53GHz to 1.58GHz. CUDA cores are identical to the X, at 3584 (compared to the plain 1080’s 2560), and by and large we’re otherwise looking at something very similar to, if not slightly better than, the Titan X, for 60% of the price.

That price is the humdinger here. $700 is crazy money for a graphics card for most of us, of course, but if you’re dead-set on 4K PC gaming, this is in theory (let’s wait for those benchmarks) the answer in a way that a $1200 card was not. This is, again in theory, the most powerful graphics card on the market for $700, which is quite a shake-up from the situation just yesterday.

Better news for more of us is that the Ti’s release has resulted an a $100 price-drop from $599 to $499 for the vanilla 1080, which still means maxed-out games on anything below 4K and quite a few at 4K. The 1080 carried too high a price at launch, so this redresses the balance – and potentially sets the stage for a pricing cold war once AMD reveals exactly what’s what with Vega. I’m hoping for great things there, given I’ve got a FreeSync monitor (oh, how I wish the adaptive sync wars would end).

The 1080 Ti is due for release on March 10 at $699 in the US, but no word on UK prices yet I’m afraid.

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30 Comments

  1. vorador says:

    For the people that bought a Titan X this is a kick in the nads.

    Rumors are that AMD Vega has gotten nvidia a bit scared. Same reason why Intel just dropped considerably the price of their entire processor lineup, just before Ryzen arrives.

    • FriendlyFire says:

      1) Every Titan released so far was outmatched by a regular card not that long afterwards, and often of the same generation. The 780Ti, 980Ti and now the 1080Ti all had a similar effect. If you buy a Titan today, you either know that it’s going to get matched by a card half the price in 6-10 months, or you’re a really good sucker and Nvidia loves you. Titans are just “I want it now”.

      2) Nvidia’s not scared, they’re using the exact same strategy they did last time: release their strongest consumer card right before AMD releases theirs. It’s suffocated the Fury last time, so they’ve no reason not to try it again.

      • Asurmen says:

        Slightly apples and oranges though. They knew they had a large advantage over whatever AMD produced with the Fury. Less so with Vega. Combined with current investor trends, they could be scared.

      • geisler says:

        Actually, it’s a lot more than “i want it now instead of 10 months later”. For certain people that put high requirements on graphical fidelity, the Titans have been the only consumer solution for years. This is simply because they’re the only product that offered enough VRAM to play games at their max settings at 4K (in case of the first Titans 1440p, a resolution which only now has started to become kind of mainstream) with additional downsampling and/or other AA solutions. I’ve been playing maxed out AAA titles in 4K going on 3 years now. This is the first Ti product that has enough VRAM to do the same.

        Don’t get me wrong, i agree that these are silly cards for a silly price aimed at a very small group of consumers (which i wouldn’t be quick to call “suckers”). If you can afford them, they do have a use, and in case of Titan SLI systems, you’re much more ahead of the curve than 10 months.

    • Sleepy Will says:

      Nah, I would guess that most Titan owners got them for video editing, whch they are still significantly better for, even older Titans heartily defeat any non titan card unless you go quadro, in which case you won’t be gaming.

      • Dezmiatu says:

        There’s non-gaming uses for . . . graphics cards?

        That sounds like Heresy.

      • Sakkura says:

        Titans don’t really bring anything special to the table anymore, after Nvidia nerfed their FP64 performance.

        • Sleepy Will says:

          12Gb vram is the special sauce for video editing. The luxuary of driving 3 screens, each showing you a 4k display with zero slowdown even with heavy edits in Resolve is not something a gaming focused card can do.

          I mean honestly, rendering, which is where the FP64 performance makes a difference is, let’s say going to take 8 hours on a 4k 1 hour video – OK, maybe you could skim it to 4 with the full performance – but you’ve spent 30 hours editing it, and saved 10 hours or more by not having to bend over backwards to accomodate a gaming focused card, so the nerfed performance really is a red herring.

    • Arioch13 says:

      I usually have a machine with Titans (now Titan X SLI) and a guest machine with something else. Around now that would usually be 1080s. Frankly, I got fed up with Nvidia. I get a Titan X. Looks good, delivers well. Then I get a new card thinking this will replace my Titans. Looks good online. Get it home, never matches up. End up sticking with the Titans in my main gaming machine. This has happened ever since the first series. It could be because I am using them in an extreme water cooled environment (Benchmarks or BF1 take them to about 36 degrees maximum temperature.). So I have the clocks very high compared to default. But I have found the better memory quality and overall range of the Titan series so far has meant they last longer. Particularly where I am watercooling them.

      However, I got fed up with Nvidia when the rumours came out they were going to stop support for cards such as 780ti and even 980 series very early. Trying to force upgrades. In many respects, they appear to have done that anyway. Some very bad driver releases even for mainstream games. Combined with a price hike for products which really arent adding value.

      I maintain SLI machines but this year I am selling off the hardware and staying with a single card. Literally only 1 game I got for the last 12 months has SLI support. Ark, Conan and pretty much anything else I like and actually pay wont touch it.

      Got bored with benching so there is no point. I am about to build a new machine based on the AM4 architecture. I am hoping to sell off my extra Titans bar one and then go AMD for the first time in 15 years. The price gouge and lies about pascal performance and DX12 supporting hardware were the final straw.

      Nvidia’s business practices and underhand marketing and pricing mean I would take anything from AMD that isnt actually terrible. As long as its prices ok and comparable, I think AMD will win out in the end. With better history with Vulkan, the understanding of CPU technology and Freesynch 2 coming later in the year. I think the open technologies will win and Nvidia’s time to enjoy the short term benefits of their short term strategic drive to proprietary technologies is about to come home to roost.

      Much hinges on the Vega release of course.

      • vorador says:

        There was an interesting piece about a guy that allegedly worked for nvidia on the driver team, circa Vista release.

        link to gamedev.net

        Between plenty of tidbits he says than an insane amount of effort was dedicated to just getting multi-gpu to work on games. I guess they got tired of it, since as you said since last year the games with multi-gpu support can be counted with the fingers of one hand.

  2. Vedharta says:

    Seems like its time to pickup that second 1080 soon…..

    • Nosada says:

      Try to hold out for Ti and VEGA benchmarks and reviews, chances are prices will take a substantial dive afterwards as people start selling their 1080’s second hand.

      • Vedharta says:

        That was indeed the thinking!

      • Premium User Badge

        AutonomyLost says:

        Yep. I run a dual 1080 rig and I will be retiring them in order to run the first single-card system I will have owned. The 1080Ti should prove to be what I’ve been waiting for.

        I’ll be selling them for a very competitive price, as it’s that or just keep them in a box and never look at them again. It’s better they find a new home!

  3. Baron von Noodles says:

    Here I was, sad that my 980 Ti crapped out on me and now it feels like a blessing in disguise to have just now happened. At least I can upgrade early and feel like I’m on pace with technological process for all of the two months that it remains top of the line.

  4. Premium User Badge

    Styxie says:

    Between Brexit, shipping costs and tax, I have feeling that it’s going to end up costing about a grand to get one of these shipped to Ireland. I’m really sick of getting gouged.

    $700 for Americans is crazy, but that might exclude tax.

    • mattevansc3 says:

      What you need to do is order it in the UK, pay for it in Holland then invoice it to Ireland.

      That should save you on the taxes.

    • Ryuthrowsstuff says:

      That is indeed before taxes. But sales tax varies here. State to state and sometimes county to county. Some states are sales tax free to. In my state you’re taking on an additional 8.625%. So $760.38. Which is currently 720.77 in Euro. The highest sales tax in the US is 9.46% so $766.22, 726.31 Euro. So if tax included retail price end up over that you’re getting the typical raw deal.

      I’d recommend doing what my family there does. Buy all your electronics on a vacation to the US, while conveniently driving through Delaware (no sales tax). Ditch as much of the original packaging as you can, mail the receipts home. Then if you end up having to notify customs about the items claim you brought them with you when you left or list them as gifts from American friends and family. Its also helpful to have American visitors bring that shit in when they come over. We’ve gotten thousands of cheep pairs of Levis over that way, dozens of cameras and laptops. Haven’t tried computer bits yet, but a cousin wants to build a gaming box on the cheap.

      • Premium User Badge

        Styxie says:

        Yes, sales tax in Ireland is 23%. Getting ripped off is a national pastime here. We are in some desperate need of some Republicanesque government shrinkage and tax cuts.

        I just don’t get why these components aren’t more widely available in the EU. I have to buy this stuff at a marked up price from a third party retailer in a different country. I should just be able to go to the Nvidia or their partner’s websites and order one directly from there. They just don’t seem interested in making their products more widely available and competitively priced. Yes, they would probably make less profit on individual units, but they would sell more of them.

        When it comes to tech, anything outside of the US market is just a complete afterthought; and unfortunately me and my family have no connections in the US, and rarely visit (I myself have never been). Anyway, rant over. Your comment was helpful though. I’m just very sick of paying 30% more for everything all of the time because reasons.

    • Premium User Badge

      Drib says:

      The only places in America that I have ever seen include sales taxes in pricing are small restaurants.

      So if I was paying full sales here, that $700 turns into $759 or so.

      But then again, you don’t usually pay sales tax/full sales tax (state, city, county, etc) on online purchases.

      America is a mess with this stuff sometimes.

    • TormDK says:

      Just about 860 Euro converted from Danish DKK prices. (6399DKK), but it is cheaper than I expected, so will be picking one of these babies up shortly.

  5. bfar says:

    It’s coming in cheaper and faster than many expected, but If if Vega really is faster and cheaper than a 1080, even by a small margin, then $700 still looks awfully expensive for the 1080ti.

  6. Premium User Badge

    AutonomyLost says:

    The day EVGA releases their water-cooled version I will be all over this thing. Sweet.

  7. Chorltonwheelie says:

    How many breathless promises of cut price Nvidia beating AMD tech?
    Let’s wait and see eh?
    In the meantime I suppose I can sell my remaining testicle to buy one of these.

  8. zat0ichi says:

    4K = 1500quid for a monitor and graphics card before you even have the actual PC.
    60fps 1440p is where the smart money goes IMO

    Maybe AMD can force the price of a 1070 below £300.
    And not just a reference blower model, I’m talking MSI twin frozr jobber.

    That’s the performance I want and I’ve adjusted my budget for inflation.
    SAying that I’m still waiting for the kids (2 & 4) to move out so I can start gaming properly again.

    • TormDK says:

      At 2 and 4 it seems like you’re out of the game for quite a number of years :)

      But I agree on the 1440p comment, thats where I’ll be staying even though I’m picking up one of these babies ASAP to replace my current 980Ti.

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