Opinion PC

What the rumoured NVIDIA GTX 1070 Ti means for gaming

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A while ago rumours of a new Nvidia graphics card started making their rounds on the web. What could this be? A new Titan? Thankfully not, but what we did hear is of a card that is potentially more interesting. A GTX 1070 Ti is rumoured to be in the works which offer similar performance to a 1080 with the main intention being the crushing of AMD’s Vega 56; a card that has snatched away the price/performance crown from the GTX1070 (if you could even find a Vega 56 at RRP that is). So what does this new card mean for you, the consumer, and is it even worthwhile?

At this point, this rumour is all but confirmed. After a leaked screenshot from the typical Chinese sources, an accidental image posting from Gigabyte and heaps of “confirmed” industry insider testimony; it’s pretty clear what’s happening here. It seems like Nvidia wasn’t very happy that the V56 was able to best the 1070 and since the 1070 is just a cutdown 1080 in the first place; they saw a gap to squeeze this Ti card into the lineup. The CUDA core count is the one point the leaks can’t quite agree on; earlier leaks had the 1070 Ti pegged at 2304 shaders (up from the 1070’s 1920) however, more recent info has indicated that the core count could be as high as 2432(!) only 5% less than a 1080’s 2560!  

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One way Nvidia is attempting to differentiate the 1080 from the 1070 Ti seems to be the memory, whereas the 1080 uses GDDR5X, the 1070 Ti will be limited to the GDDR5 that comes on all the lower-tiered cards. What would this mean for the card’s performance? Probably not much, memory bandwidth is often not a very limiting factor in a GPU’s performance and with some adjustments to the memory clock of the Ti, we can expect it to basically perform the same as the 1080 in every area for all intents and purposes while costing a rumoured ~75$ less (430$ RRP)…all but one area, where the 1070 Ti will perform substantially better.    

So, in other words, a great deal right?! Right. Such a good deal in fact that a number of people who would forgo purchasing a 1080 and instead of picking up a 1070 Ti will probably be 90% of those looking to buy a card in this segment. Even in the worst-case scenario, 95% of the performance for 15-20% less is a great deal which is why this card will absolutely cannibalise the sales of the 1080 and I’m of the belief that the card probably won’t be around long because of it.

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I anticipate the 1070 Ti to be a bit of a paper-launch card only, there would perhaps be a couple initial shipments to prove that the card actually exists and that Nvidia once again has taken the price/performance crown from AMD. After which, I anticipate supply to plummet.

“Why the negative outlook?”

Well, Nvidia is known to get the most out of their cards as they possibly can; most of the time at the expense of consumers. Let us not forget that they released Titan X (Pascal) at the start of the Pascal era (which in itself was a cut-down chip) and a GTX 1080 at 700$, only for that price to fall 200$ a couple months later with the release of the 1080 Ti.

This was then followed by the release of the NEW Titan XP which did finally come with the full GP 102 die, effectively obsoleting a flagship they had released only a few months prior to that.

My story only gets worse from here. Remember that area I said the 1070 Ti will beat the 1080 in? That area is Crpyto Mining.

The biggest reason few miners buy the GTX 1080 and 1080 Ti to begin with, is because of their memory type. GDDR5X doesn’t play nice with mining algo’s even though the compute performance of these cards is the highest of the GeForce cards to date. This is where the 1070 Ti comes in; basically, being a 1080 without GDDR5X, the mining performance of this card will be exceptional.

And it's exactly for these reasons that I believe you can expect Gamers to never SEE the 1070 Ti, let alone own one (at RRP anyway). I really hope I'm wrong.

The rumoured announcement date of the 1070 Ti is the 26th of October, lending, even more, credence to Gigabyte's Halloween image. Only time will tell. 

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