NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1060 Brings GTX 980 Performance To Battle Radeon RX 480 For $249

NVIDIA is launching an all-out assault on AMD in the PC graphics segment. In May, NVIDIA released the new graphics king: the GeForce GTX 1080. The company followed up on that beastly chip in June with slightly cut down GeForce GTX 1070. That trickledown effect is now reaching the mainstream market with the arrival of the GeForce GTX 1060.

The GTX 1060 can be seen as a direct response to the AMD Radeon RX 480, which offers a ton of performance at the $200 price point. While still built using a 16nm FinFET process, the GP106 core on the GTX 1060 features 1280 CUDA cores; exactly half that of the GTX 1080 (the GTX 1070 fits smack dab in the middle of the two). Base clock for the GPU is 1506MHz, while the boost clock is 1708MHz (NVIDIA is quick to point out, however, the GPU core can easily be overclocked to 2GHz+ levels if you’re looking for even more performance on a budget). The GTX 1060 features a 192-bit memory bus and comes with 6GB of GDDR5 memory running at 8Gbps. The card has a 6-pin power connector and has a 120W TDP.

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All of this makes for a potent graphics card that hits the sweet spot of the graphics card market.

Although our review of the card isn’t quite ready yet, leaked benchmarks show the GTX 1060 outpacing the Radeon RX 480 in the 3DMark Firestrike Performance/Ultra benchmarks. The benchmark results also place the GTX 1060 in close contention with the Maxwell-based GeForce GTX 980, a card that was priced at $549 when it launched. NVIDIA claims that the GTX is on average 15 percent faster than its closest competitor (i.e. the Radeon RX 480) while also being over 75 percent more power efficient. It’s also twice as power efficient at virtual reality (VR) gaming that the GTX 980.

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Given that this is still a Pascal-based card, the GTX 1060 supports all the latest DirectX 11/12 games, NVIDIA VRWorks Simultaneous Multi-Projection technology, and the NVIDIA Ansel game-capture tool. NVIDIA also announced that its VR Funhouse carnival game will be available later in July for free on Steam.

The NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1060 will be available starting July 19th from a wide variety of third-party partners including ASUS, EVGA, Gigabyte, MSI and Zotac (among many others) with a starting price of $249. The NVIDIA-built GeForce GTX 1060 Founder Edition will be available for $299.