Nvidia’s beastly GeForce GTX 1080 and GTX 1070: The 10 key things you need to know – PCWorld

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Nvidia’s long-awaited GeForce GTX 1080 is real and it’s spectacular—at least on paper. If you missed Friday night’s big reveal, here are the 10 things you need to know about Nvidia’s ferocious, cutting-edge GeForce GTX 1080 and the just-as-impressive GeForce GTX 1070.

1) Ludicrous speed

The most important thing to know: This thing is fast. Ridonkulously fast. “Faster than dual GeForce GTX 980s in SLI” fast, which is hands-down faster than Nvidia’s flagship Titan X, the most potent single-GPU graphics card ever released. During a demo, the new Doom topped out at roughly 200 frames per second at 1080p resolution with all the graphics settings cranked. As I said in my initial coverage: Hot damn.

2) Ludicrous speed redux

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Nvidia-supplied performance comparison of the GTX 1080 vs the GTX 980. Click to enlarge.

Remember how I said the Titan X is the most potent single GPU ever released? That high-water mark is the new mid-range for Nvidia’s Pascal GPU architecture. The step-down GeForce GTX 1070 outpunches the Titan X too, Nvidia says—though it never said exactly what was being compared.

3) Black magic

The secret sauce behind those jaw-dropping performance gains lies in the adoption of several cutting-edge technologies, all at once. After being stuck on the 28 nanometer transistor manufacturing process for four long years, Nvidia’s Pascal GPUs are being built on the 16nm process—a two-generation technological leap. What’s more, the chips embrace advanced FinFET technology, as well as 8GB of an improved form of memory dubbed GDDR5X that allows for whopping 10Gbps speeds. No, that’s not as fast as the cutting-edge high-bandwidth memory found in AMD’s Fury graphics cards, but HBM’s currently limited to 4GB capacities and the GDDR5X is still plenty speedier than the GTX 980’s 7Gbps memory.

You can find the full set of announced GTX 1080 tech specs on Nvidia’s website if you’re interested.

4) Power efficiency

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The move to a 16nm process gives Nvidia’s newest GPU an insane jump in performance and efficiency.

Beyond enabling eye-watering performance, those technological leaps helped the Pascal architecture become Nvidia’s most energy-efficient GPU yet, with the GTX 1080 boasting three times the efficiency of the Maxwell GPU-based Titan X, according to Nvidia. Yet despite offering more performance than dual GTX 980s, the GTX 1080 only demands 180W of power over a single 8-pin power connector. That seems like it shouldn’t be possible—powering a pair of GTX 980s demands the use of four 6-pin power connections, by comparison.

5) Overclocks like a beast

But the there’s still plenty of overclocking headroom for people who want MOAR POWER hiding behind that modest power draw. While the GTX 1080 offers clock speeds hundreds of megahertz higher than the GTX 980 out of the box—with a max boost clock of 1733MHz—Nvidia showed a Paragon demo running on a GTX 1080 overclocked to a blistering 2114MHz. And it was air-cooled, and still running at a comparatively chilly 67 degrees Celcius.

6) Simultaneous multi-display

Nvidia’s loading the GTX 1080 down with some new software tricks, too. Simultaneous multi-display improves how games look on multiple displays or VR headsets, using technological tricks to prevent the distortion that naturally occurs when you’re projecting an image onto multiple displays tilted at slightly different angles. (Think of a straight line drawn on a piece of paper, then how it appears when you fold that paper instead—angled, rather than straight.)

Nvidia’s beastly GeForce GTX 1080 and GTX 1070: The 10 key things you need to know – PCWorld