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NVIDIA GeForce RTX Super Cards
GeForce RTX turns Super
NVIDIA's supremacy in the high-end graphics space is best demonstrated by the firm's ability to keep rival AMD at arm's length. Whenever Team Red decides to introduce a new GPU, Team Green tends to thwart any such effort with a superior release of its own.
Those who follow PC graphics will know that AMD plans to launch two 7nm 'Navi' GPUs - the Radeon RX 5700 XT and RX 5700 - on July 7, in an attempt to challenge NVIDIA's existing GeForce RTX 2070 and RTX 2060. Not wanting to be caught unprepared, NVIDIA is today launching a pre-emptive strike with three Super additions to its line-up.
The new GeForce GPUs, dubbed RTX 2060 Super, RTX 2070 Super, and RTX 2080 Super, are headed to retail priced at $399, $499, and $699, respectively. Bog-standard Founders Edition pre-orders officially start on July 2 for the cheaper duo, with a full roster of custom-cooled partner cards becoming available a week later on July 9. Of course, Scan Computers will offer a full range on day one.
The RTX 2080 Super, meanwhile, will be released on July 23, which is about the same time as we expect partner cards to come into view.
But what actually makes the new RTX additions deserving of the 'Super' moniker, and has NVIDIA done enough work behind the scenes to fundamentally change the performance footprint of existing Turing GPUs? To find out exactly what's what, let's take a closer look at the specification table.
|GeForce RTX Super: where does it fit in?|
|RTX 2080 Ti||RTX 2080 Super||RTX 2080||RTX 2070 Super||RTX 2070||RTX 2060 Super||RTX 2060|
|Launch date||Sep 2018||July 2019||Sep 2018||July 2019||Oct 2018||July 2019||Jan 2019|
|Die Size (mm²)||754||545||545||545||445||445||445|
|Base Clock (MHz)||1,350||1,650||1,515||1,605||1,410||1,470||1,365|
|Boost Clock (MHz)||1,545||1,815||1,710||1,770||1,620||1,650||1,680|
|L2 cache (KB)||5,632||4,096||4,096||4,096||4,096||4,096||3,072|
|Power Connector||8-pin + 8-pin||8-pin + 6-pin||8-pin + 6-pin||8-pin + 6-pin||8-pin||8-pin||8-pin|
To those of you who managed to resist and sit on the fence awaiting the second batch of Turing cards, we can only say well done, as the new additions, on paper at least, show plenty of promise. Let's start with RTX 2060 Super. This time around, NVIDIA has kept more of the 445mm² TU106 die intact, resulting in 2,176 shaders: almost 15 per cent more than the outgoing RTX 2060. More shaders naturally result in a rise in texture units, Tensor cores and RT cores, but the real goodness is around back, where both memory interface and size have been expanded to 256-bit and 8GB, respectively. Great news for higher-resolution gaming, where the frame buffer can pay dividends, and RTX 2060 Super's composition is such that performance should be eerily similar to a regular RTX 2070.
So how about the RTX 2070 Super? Appreciating that there's only so much performance available from the smaller TU106 die, NVIDIA has made the surprise decision to launch an RTX 2070 variant based on the more capable 545mm² TU104. That means shader count rises from 2,304 on the regular card to 2,560 on the Super, while texture units, Tensor cores and RT cores all benefit from a proportional increase. This is joined by higher clock speeds on both Super cards, too.
The RTX 2080 Super uses the full force of the TU104 silicon as it carries 3,072 shaders and 48SMs - the most the design will allow. This extra up-top power, which is further boosted by a faster core clock, is augmented by speedier memory, running at 15.5Gbps, so expect this Super version to be at least 10 per cent quicker than the regular RTX 2080 you see today. RTX 2080 Ti, meanwhile, will continue as king of the RTX hierarchy.
QHD Gaming Credentials
Benchmarks from leading review sites confirm that the on-paper promise lives up to expectations. RTX 2060 Super is, for all intents and purposes, on a par with the previous RTX 2070. At $499, the 2070 Super card ups the ante by slotting in a lot closer to RTX 2080 in the charts. RTX 2080 Super is not present because it's available later than the cheaper duo.
Going back to NVIDIA's pre-emptive strike, remember that AMD's upcoming Radeon RX 5700 XT and RX 5700 are thought to be challengers for the RTX 2070 and RTX 2060. That by all accounts was the plan, but with the Super variants NVIDIA has moved the goalposts, and may well have scuppered the Radeon game plan.
Both Super cards are well-suited to high-quality gaming at a QHD resolution, but the pricier RTX 2070 Super also has the muscle to deliver 4K60 performance in a raft of modern titles. Impressive stuff at the $499 price point, and it will be fascinating to see how the upcoming Radeons compare.
Even if they do well, it's unlikely they will be able to challenge the might of the RTX 2080 Super, which will undoubtedly be faster than the regular RTX 2080.
They say that competition in the marketplace is a good thing, and though AMD has posed minimal threat in what can now be described as a prolonged period of GeForce supremacy, the impending arrival of new Radeon GPUs has spurred NVIDIA into action.
Enhancing the appeal of the firm's RTX portfolio, Team Green has announced the RTX 2080 Super and introduced the RTX 2070 Super and RTX 2060 Super GPUs to stave off any potential Radeon challengers. The new additions offer generous performance uplifts when compared to their direct predecessors, and, right now, there's nothing better for high-resolution gaming at their respective $499 and $399 price points. Time will tell if the RTX 2080 Super lives up to its expected performance potential.
A full range of NVIDIA GeForce RTX Super graphics cards will, as always, be available to purchase right here at Scan Computers.