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NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2080 and 2080 Ti review: Guess who has the fastest cards, again

By Koh Wanzi - 19 Sep 2018

Test setup & gaming performance

Test Setup

The detailed specifications of our new graphics card testbed system is as follows:-

  • Intel Core i7-8086K (4.0GHz, 12MB L3 cache)
  • ASUS ROG Strix Maximus X Hero (Intel Z370)
  • 4 x 8GB G.Skill Ripjaws V DDR4-3000 (Auto timings: CAS 15-15-15-35)
  • Samsung 860 EVO 500GB SSD
  • Windows 10 Pro 64-bit
  • ASUS PB287Q, 4K monitor

The full line-up of graphics cards and their driver versions are listed below:

  • NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2080 Ti (ForceWare 411.51)
  • NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2080 (ForceWare 411.51)
  • NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1080 Ti (ForceWare 399.24)
  • NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1080 (ForceWare 399.24)
  • NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1070 Ti (ForceWare 399.24)

Test cards compared
  NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2080 Ti Founders Edition NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2080 NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1080 Ti Founders Edition NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1080 Founders Edition NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1070 Ti Founders Edition
  NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2080 Ti Founders Edition NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2080 NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1080 Ti Founders Edition NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1080 Founders Edition NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1070 Ti Founders Edition
Launch SRP
  • From S$1188
  • From S$1188
Core Code
  • TU102
  • TU104
  • GP102
  • GP104
  • GP104-300
GPU Transistor Count
  • 18.9 billion
  • 13.6 billion
  • 12 billion
  • 7.2 billion
  • 7.2 billion
Manufacturing Process
  • 12nm FinFET
  • 12nm FinFET
  • 16nm
  • 16nm
  • 16nm FinFET
Core Clock
  • Core: 1,350MHz, Boost: 1,635MHz
  • Core: 1,515MHz, Boost: 1,800MHz
  • 1480MHz (Boost: 1582MHz)
  • 1607MHz (Boost: 1733MHz)
  • Base: 1607MHz
  • Boost: 1683MHz
Stream Processors
  • 4,352
  • 2,944
  • 3584
  • 2560
  • 2432
Texture Mapping Units (TMUs)
  • 272
  • 184
  • 224
  • 160
  • 152
Raster Operator units (ROP)
  • 88
  • 64
  • 88
  • 64
  • 64
Memory Clock (DDR)
  • 11GB GDDR6 14,000MHz
  • 8GB GDDR6 14,000MHz
  • 11000MHz
  • 10000MHz
  • 8000MHz DDR
Memory Bus width
  • 352-bit
  • 256-bit
  • 352-bit
  • 256-bit
  • 256 bit
Memory Bandwidth
  • 616GB/s
  • 448GB/s
  • 484.4 GB/s
  • 320 GB/s
  • 256GB/s
PCI Express Interface
  • 3.0
  • 3.0
  • PCI Express 3.0
  • PCI Express 3.0
  • PCIe 3.0
Power Connectors
  • 2 x 8-pin
  • 1x 8-pin, 1x 6-pin
  • 1 x 8-pin, 1x 6-pin
  • 1 x 8-pin
  • 1 x 8-pin, 1 x 6-pin
Multi GPU Technology
  • Yes (2-way SLI)
  • Yes (2-way SLI)
  • SLI
  • SLI
  • SLI
DVI Outputs
  • No
  • No
  • 1
  • 1
HDMI Outputs
  • 1x
  • 1x
  • 1
  • 1
  • 1 x HDMI 2.0B
DisplayPort Outputs
  • 3x
  • 3x
  • 3
  • 3
  • 2 x DisplayPort 1.4
HDCP Output Support
  • Yes
  • Yes
  • Yes
  • Yes
  • Yes
Stream Processor Clock
  • 1480MHz
  • 1607MHz
  • 1607MHz

 

Benchmarks

Next up, here's a list of all the benchmarks used:

  • 3DMark
  • VRMark
  • Ashes of the Singularity: Escalation
  • Deus Ex: Mankind Divided
  • Far Cry 5
  • Middle-earth: Shadow of War
  • Shadow of the Tomb Raider
  • Tom Clancy's The Division

We used the Fire Strike Extreme benchmark and stress test in 3DMark for our temperature  and power consumption tests respectively.

 

3DMark

The synthetic 3DMark benchmark tests graphics and computational performance at different resolutions, starting at 1080p and going all the way up to 4K. A series of two graphics test, one physics test, and then a combined test stresses your hardware in turn to assess its performance.

The GeForce RTX 2080 Ti is the undisputed king of the pack here. It is roughly 13 per cent faster than the GeForce RTX 2080 in 3DMark Fire Strike, and nearly 30 per cent quicker than the GeForce GTX 1080. At the 4K Fire Strike Extreme test, it gained a 23 per cent lead over the GeForce RTX 2080.

That said, the GeForce RTX 2080 was actually a good 22 per cent faster than the GeForce GTX 1080 in the Fire Strike Extreme benchmark. That's a modest generation leap, but it's also worth noting that it was basically neck-and-neck with the GeForce GTX 1080 Ti for most of the tests (save for the Time Spy tests), something that carries over to the rest of the benchmarks as well. 

 

VRMark

Futuremark’s VRMark benchmark is designed to assess a PC’s ability to handle high-performance headsets like the HTC Vive and Oculus Rift. If a PC passes the Orange Room test, it is ready for the latter two systems. The second graph also shows how the cards fared against the benchmark's target of an average FPS of 109. 

All the tested cards are more than capable of handling the benchmark, and it looks like they're actually so fast that the CPU is starting to become a limiting factor (and that's considering we've already plugged in the fastest stock-clocked Intel processor in our test rig). In fact, there's hardly any significant difference at the upper end between the top Turing and Pascal cards. 

 

Ashes of the Singularity: Escalation

Ashes of the Singularity has long been the poster child for the performance benefits a low-level API like DirectX 12 can bring. It is based on the Nitrous engine and can be extremely punishing thanks to the huge number of onscreen units and the sheer level of detail accorded to each unit. However, the CPU does become the limiting factor at lower resolutions and settings. 

As a result, the Turing cards don't really get to show their full potential at the less demanding settings. 

However, they start to come alive at the 4K resolution, where the GeForce RTX 2080 Ti gained a 17 per cent lead over the GeForce GTX 1080 Ti. The GeForce RTX 2080 was also a good 25 per cent ahead of the GeForce GTX 1080, although it once again performed very closely to the GeForce GTX 1080 Ti.

 

Deus Ex: Mankind Divided

Mankind Divided features just about every trick to make your game look pretty, including things like volumetric and dynamic lighting, screenspace reflections, and cloth physics. Even though it was released in 2016, the game is capable of bringing even the most powerful systems to their knees. 

The GeForce RTX 2080 Ti tore ahead of the previous generation cards here, and the GeForce RTX 2080 even gained a lead over the GeForce GTX 1080 Ti. At a 4K resolution and Ultra settings, the GeForce RTX 2080 Ti was 35 per cent faster than the GeForce GTX 1080 Ti. Similarly, the GeForce RTX 2080 posted a similar lead over the GeForce GTX 1080.

 

Far Cry 5

The latest installment in the Far Cry series is actually an AMD launch title, so it'll be interesting to see how the green camp fares here. 

The flagship Turing card truly impressed here, managing more than 60FPS at a 4K resolution and Ultra settings. It was 22 per cent faster than the GeForce RTX 2080, which also managed a nice 30 per cent improvement over the GeForce GTX 1080.

 

Middle-earth: Shadow of War

The GeForce RTX 2080 Ti handily dealt with anything Shadow of War threw at it, posting over 60FPS at a 4K resolution as well. The GeForce GTX 2080 didn't fare too shabbily either, coming in at 38 per cent quicker than the GeForce GTX 1080. 

 

Shadow of the Tomb Raider

NVIDIA has mentioned Shadow of the Tomb Raider a lot lately, largely because it will be one of the first games to support its RTX technology through a post-release patch. At the time of writing however, the patch hasn't dropped yet, so the results still deal with conventional performance metrics. 

Once again, the GeForce RTX 2080 Ti had no problem handling the game at 4K. Shadow of the Tomb Raider shows some signs of becoming CPU-limiting at 1080p resolutions, and the performance differentials are only really obvious at 4K. 

 

Tom Clancy's The Division

The GeForce RTX 2080 Ti hardly broke a sweat in The Division. When it came to the GeForce RTX 2080, it managed a 35 per cent advantage over the GeForce GTX 1080, and even edged ahead of the GeForce GTX 1080 Ti. 

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