Amid a sea of rumor and speculation, the GTX 1060 graphics card has finally been officially announced by Nvidia. The newest entry in the 10-series of Pascal graphics cards, the GTX 1060 will reportedly offer consumers GTX 980-level performance for only $249. This price point and power level puts rival AMD’s own RX 480 directly in the crosshairs of the graphics card giant.
According to the official announcement by Nvidia, the GTX 1060 has been crafted, like all of the Pascal GPUs, with speed and performance per watt in mind. Utilizing the newest FinFET 16nm process, the GTX 1060 will, according to Nvidia, give gamers GTX 980-level performance and twice the VR efficiency as previous GPU models. It does all this while only requiring 120 watts of power. This is important to note, as AMD’s RX 480 has come under fire recently for drawing too much power from consumer’s PCs, so if Nvidia’s 1060 can stay at the 120-watt claim, it’s a definite bump over their competitor.
The GTX 1060 will be available not just from Nvidia themselves, but the card boasts many board partner variants such as ASUS, Colorful, EVGA, Gainward, Galaxy, Gigabyte, Innovision 3D, MSI, Palit, PNY, and Zotac.
In terms of raw numbers, AnandTech has a great table breaking down the comparison numbers between the different 10-series cards, as well as comparing the GTX 1060 to it’s spiritual predecessor, the GTX 960. According to Nvidia, the GTX 1060 will sport 1,280 CUDA cores, 6GB of GDDR5 memory running at 8Gbps, and a boost clock of 1.7GHz, which Nvidia claims can be overclocked to 2GHz for even greater performance. Nvidia also purports that the GTX 1060 will run on average 15 percent faster as well as over 75 percent more efficient than the closest competitive product. Whether the product Nvidia is hinting at is one of their own previous cards or they’re comparing it to AMD’s board is unclear.
Additionally, as with all the GTX 10-series cards, the GTX 1060 will support Nvidia Simultaneous Multi-Projection technology, which allows 10-series cards to project a single image to both eyes, simultaneously. This, according the the GPU giant, yields a 3x VR performance over previous GPU generations. It will be incredibly interesting to see benchmarks when they are available comparing the GTX 1060 with the RX 480, as both are designed to give great VR performance at a lower cost. AMD’s offering does perform well in other areas, but as Tweak Town’s VR expert Jason Evangelho reported in their review of the RX 480, he questions whether or not the RX 480 is truly “future-proof” for the entry-level VR user, something that the GTX 1060 will need to prove as well.
“See, AMD is pushing the RX 480 as a GPU to experience premium VR,” Evangelho writes, “but they’re also pushing the idea of it being somewhat future-proof, mentioning that they want to respect the user’s investment. But will the RX 480 be viable next year when the second generation of Rifts and Vives inevitably hit the market, and developers keep pushing the visual envelope forward?”
It’s that mindset that makes the direct comparison between the GTX 1060 and the RX 480 so interesting. Both are targeting the same price range. Both boast, and the RX 480 has been proven, to provide insane levels of gaming quality for the low cost. And both have claimed to bring VR to a lower price point. How the two fare against each other in terms of that VR performance will shake up the lower tiered card’s market.
However, for fans hoping to SLI the GTX 1060, it was reported that the new card will not support SLI, as the adapter is missing from the board. While many won’t see this as an issue, it’s worth noting that the other models in the 10-series do support the feature, so this is shame for anyone looking to dual-wield 1060s. However, it does make a modicum of sense, as someone who is going to SLI the units can simply spend a bit more and get the GTX 1080.
The GTX 1060 will be available starting at $249 on July 19. The GTX 1060 Founder’s Edition board will be available as well for $299.
[Image via Nvidia]