The Nvidia GeForce GTX 1080 Ti is easy to forgive that exorbitant price if you can afford it. After investing in the Nvidia GeForce RTX 2080 Ti, it’s hard to look back if you’re looking for high-end gaming. You can really get the most out of both, especially when paired with the best processors and gaming monitors.
Nvidia GeForce RTX 2080 Ti Review
The Nvidia GeForce RTX 2080 Ti graphics card is still a monster in the gaming department. It brings impressive ray tracing technology and AI-powered Tensor cores to any graphics-based task, these features make it worth buying the most expensive graphics cards, it can also generate over 60fps at 4K when gaming.
Cooling and Design:
The Nvidia RTX 2080 Ti and the entire Turing-based RTX series feature the first dual-fan cooling system we’ve seen on the Nvidia Founders Edition cards. First-party cards usually always come with a blower-style cooler that basically sucks cool air through a fan and transfers heat through the back of the card.
The dual fan system, meanwhile, essentially takes in cool air and splashes it on an open heatsink, dissipating heat in all directions. Blower-style coolers are good at isolating heat from the rest of the components, but cooling capacity has historically been much smaller because a single fan can only move so much air.
Dual and multi-fan systems, on the other hand, can move a lot more air, but eventually, build up more heat inside the PC case. A lot of debate in the computer industry about which one is better is still unresolved.
In addition to the new fans, the Nvidia RTX 2080 Ti sports a full-length vapor chamber that covers the entire printed circuit board (PCB) of the card. With this system and its dual fan system, Nvidia promises that the whole system will work to deliver a very cool and quiet performance.
During our own testing, we found that the new cooling system in the Founders Edition worked as promised, leaving the GPU running cool and quiet. However, the RTX 2080 Ti and RTX 2080 ran a few degrees hotter than their predecessors even at idle, so the new cooler looks like much more than Nvidia is letting go.
None of the graphics cards went above 80 degrees Celsius, but I can imagine they would have easily overheated if they were equipped with a standard blower-style cooler.
Performance and hardware:
After thoroughly benchmarking the card, we can confidently say that the Nvidia RTX 2080 Ti is currently the most powerful consumer graphics card in the world. Not only does it run laps around the GeForce GTX 1080 Ti, but it also outperforms the Nvidia Titan XP. Nvidia’s new flagship GeForce card has a 2,000-point lead in almost all synthetic benchmarks, delivering at least 10 frames per second (fps) in each game-based test.
At Nvidia’s GeForce Gaming Celebration event at Gamescom 2018, we saw the Nvidia RTX deliver far more realistic results at varying intensities everywhere depicted in the stone ruins of the rainforest. We also saw the walls glisten as light is reflected and refracted.
In terms of frame rates, the initial builds of Shadow of the Tomb Raider ran at a near-consistent 40-50 fps. This is impressive in that, in addition to all the new ray tracing technology, the game is running on a single GPU. I’ve also played Battlefield IV with Nvidia RTX turned on, and have seen performance running more than 100 fps on 4K and Ultra settings.
You can watch Battlefield V with Nvidia RTX gameplay captured via the Nvidia GeForce Experience app (shared with PC gamers). Surprisingly, to reach this level of performance, the Nvidia RTX 2080 Ti actually consumes less power than the Titan XP and 1080 Ti. This means this GPU draws twice the minimum power and heats up quickly, so make sure you are ready to dissipate all the heat before installing your PC.
Features of Nvidia GeForce RTX 2080 Ti
Although it costs almost twice as much as an alternative graphics card, the Nvidia GeForce RTX 2080 Ti offers incredible specs with 11GB of GDDR6 VRAM, 4,352 CUDA cores, and a boost clock of 1,635MHz. Thanks to Nvidia’s first self-implemented 90MHz factory overclock. Comparatively, the Nvidia GeForce GTX 1080 Ti boasts 11GB of last-generation GDDR5X VRAM, 3,584 CUDA cores, and a 1582MHz max frequency.
These GPUs also offer two additional core types that were not present in their predecessors in the form of RT and Tensor cores. With the RTX 2080’s Ti’s 68 RT Core power ray tracing, this graphics card is capable of rendering much more complex real-time lighting scenarios and natural shadows than the 1080 Ti.
In the meantime, 544 Tensor Cores are blending artificial intelligence (AI), which Nvidia hopes to use for more efficient anti-aliasing. According to Nvidia, Turing is 8x faster at handling anti-aliasing than Pascal with machine learning. Tensor Core also powers a new technique called deep learning supersampling that can simultaneously apply anti-aliasing while increasing resolution.
During testing, we ran the Epic Infiltrator benchmark to gain experience with temporal anti-aliasing for DLSS. The former was able to sustain rendered frame rates from a minimum of 34 frames per second to a maximum of 117 fps, but later it was between 35 and 89 fps.
You will also find a surprising number of new ports on this new GPU. The high-bandwidth connector that Nvidia has been using for multi-card setups for years has been replaced by NV Link, promising 50 times the transmission bandwidth of previous technologies. The RTX 2080 Ti specifically has two of these connectors, giving you up to 100GB of total bandwidth, which you can use to power multiple 8K monitors in surround.
There is also a newly added USB-C video output port on the back, which is popular with new monitors. The USB-C 3.1 Gen 2 port supports UHD video and delivers 27 watts of power, so you only need to connect one cable to power future virtual reality headsets.
If you’re a PC gamer waiting for a more powerful graphics card, or truly believe in Nvidia’s vision for a ray-traced future, the Nvidia RTX 2080 Ti is the new top dog in the graphics card world. A sound investment for you. After seeing the realistic lighting that ray tracing can create, I honestly don’t want to go back to the traditionally rasterized dark pools we expect to have incredible reflections in.
Also, more and more games are supporting the new technology, with Cyberpunk 2077 and Call of Duty: Modern Warfare being the latest technology. Tensor Core, on the other hand, seems to pay long-term dividends by reducing the overhead of anti-aliasing and supersampling.