If you’re shopping around for a new graphics card, make sure to check out the GeForce GTX 1080. It’s the latest offering from Nvidia, along with the GTX 1070 and the rumored GTX 1060, and it’s said to be the most powerful option in the market as of the moment.
GTX 1080 SPECS
The GeForce GTX 1080 is built with Pascal GP104 architecture that comes with a 16-nanometer transistor node. If you’ve been keeping a close eye on the graphics processor industry, you probably already know that efforts to move to 20nm nodes have been unsuccessful, which has left the industry stranded on 24nm transistors for four years. This means that the GTX 1080’s 16nm transistor represents the advancement of two full generations of GPUs and provides the GTX 1080 with a big boost in performance.
As if that’s not enough, this new GPU also comes with 8GB of GDDR5X memory, which is a bigger and more improved version of the GDDR5 memory that has become a standard in graphic cards. The GDDR5X runs at 10 Gbps and pushes the GTX 1080’s memory bandwidth to 320GBps, despite the fact that it has a 256-bit bus that older GPUs also have.
The 16nm transistor node and the GDDR5X combine to make the GTX 1080 a fast and powerful force to reckon with. This becomes more obvious when the new GPU is compared with the GTX 980, which runs on Maxwell architecture and has been considered to be one of the best graphics card for several years until now. GTX 1080 unsurprisingly leaves its older sibling behind in several categories, with its 1607 MHz base clock, 1733 MHz GPU boost clock, 8873 GFLOPs, 10,000 MHz data rate, and 277.3 Gigatels per second texel fill rate. The GTX 980 lags behind with its 1126 MHz base clock, 1216 MHz GPU boost clock, 4981 GFLOPs, 7,000 MHz data rate, and 155.6 Gigatels per second texel fill rate.
One of the best things about the GTX 1080 is that it’s built to handle virtual reality technology. With VR headsets and VR games in the market (and more to come), this makes the new GPU a great investment for the future.
PRICE AND AVAILABILITY
Nvidia announced the GeForce GTX 1080 on May 2016, and it’s widely available on almost every part of the world. It’s available in both Founders’ Edition (which used to be called reference cards) as well as non-Founders Edition units, and you can purchase it directly from the GeForce website or from retailers like Amazon, Best Buy, and newegg.com. Its price starts at $699, although this can increase, of course, depending on the tweaks that manufacturers have done on the PCB design.
PROBLEMS WITH VIVE
As mentioned above, the GeForce GTX 1080 is built to be compatible with virtual reality. However, there have been numerous reports that the card has compatibility issues with the popular VR headset HTC Vive. Nvidia has said that they’re looking into the issue, but they have not yet released any solution for it. Several users have tried to fix the problem by using an adaptor to turn the Vive’s HDMI port into a DisplayPort and make it compatible with the GTX 1080.