NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2080 and 2080 Ti: Our Summary And Conclusion
Performance Summary: Let’s break down the performance of NVIDIA’s new GeForce RTX 2080 and RTX 2080 Ti separately, because there’s a lot to cover. The new flagship GeForce RTX 2080 Ti is easily the fastest, single-GPU we have tested to date. With today’s games, the GeForce RTX 2080 Ti is approximately 20 – 45% faster than a Titan Xp and it makes smooth, 4K gaming with ultra-high image quality settings a reality with a single GPU. Performance was especially strong with newer, optimized titles like FarCry 5 and in the VR-related benchmarks, but the card led across the board in all gaming tests. The GeForce RTX 2080 Ti is also a good overclocker that can easily achieve a 2GHz+ GPU frequency and power consumption, while somewhat higher, is in the same realm as previous-gen cards.
The GeForce RTX 2080’s performance, whether considering the NVIDIA-built Founder’s Edition or customized EVGA and MSI cards we also featured, is a little more difficult to summarize. The GeForce RTX 2080 clearly outpaces the GeForce GTX 1080 by a wide margin across the board. Its performance was also strong in newer titles and in the VR-related tests, and it generally performed on-par or somewhat better than a GeForce GTX 1080 Ti, though it did nudge past the Titan Xp on a couple of occasions as well. Overclocking the GPU into the 2 – 2.1GHz range should also be possible with most RTX 2080 cards and power consumption is in-line as well.
Performance is clearly a strong point for the GeForce RTX series and we’ve only just gotten a taste for what the cards can do when DLSS or Ray Tracing are introduced into the mix. With current games, the GeForce RTX series looks good, but it’s what they’ll offer in the future when game developers fully embrace their new technology and capabilities that they will truly be set apart. So far, developer support seems strong and an array of titles that support Ray Tracing, DLSS, or both, are coming down the pipe.
The pricing of these new cards is a bit of a minefield at the moment, however. We haven’t seen any cards advertised at the “reference” non-Founder’s Edition pricing NVIDIA’s CEO mentioned on stage during the initial unveiling. Pricing for the GeForce RTX 2080 Ti Founder’s Edition starts at $1,199 and customized partner boards are about $50 - $100 more. The GeForce RTX 2080 Founder’s Edition is priced at $799, but some partner boards are currently listed in the $749 range. Their branding suggests comparisons should be made between the RTX 2080 Ti and GTX 1080 Ti, and RTX 2080 and GTX 1080, but pricing is more in-line with RTX 2080 Ti versus Titan Xp, and RTX 2080 versus GTX 1080 Ti comparisons. In GeForce RTX 2080 Ti’s case, it’s a significantly faster card, that’s cooler, quieter, and offers and array of forward-looking technologies for about the same price. Yes, it’s expensive, but in light of the current GPU landscape and the lack of competition at the high-end, it’s easy to see why the RTX 2080 Ti is price as it is. The GeForce RTX 2080 offers performance on-par with or better than the GeForce GTX 1080 Ti, with the same support for future-looking technologies, at prices about 10% higher.
In the end, like most of you, we wish NVIDIA took the introduction of the GeForce RTX series as an opportunity to discount Pascal and that these new GPUs had lower introductory prices, but looking back at the numbers (and new architecture features), it’s easy to see where the current pricing comes from. After all, Turing is a much larger GPU with completely new Tensor and RT core processing resources. Until AMD (or maybe Intel) put more pressure on NVIDIA at the high-end, it is what it is – enthusiasts have always had to pay to play, so to speak.
Pricing concerns aside, we’re excited that Turing and the GeForce RTX series is finally here. NVIDIA has not only upped the ante in terms of performance with current gaming titles, but introduced innovative new technologies that promise even greater performance and new levels of in-game realism in the future.