It’s been what feels like a lifetime coming, but Nvidia has finally unveiled the pascal GPU. Or at the very least, the GTX 1080 and 1070. The other, cheaper cards will come later. First impressions are promising, but don’t start throwing your money at the screen until we see some real world benchmarks.
The facts we do know is that the founder’s edition of the 1080 will be out May 27th for $699. Once manufacturers get their hands on the card and start releasing their custom boards, pricing is expected to start at $599. The founders edition of the 1070 is $449, with custom boards at $379.
Founders edition refers to the reference cards that Nvidia has shown. They’ll be sold all throughout the card’s lifetime, but chances are until you want one of the new cards immediately, you’ll be better off waiting until the pascal cards from Nvidia’s partners are out. You’re basically paying an extra $100/$80 to be an early adopter. There’s even a good chance the partners’ cards will outperform the reference ones, and perhaps have better cooling, too. No date on those yet, but they won’t be too far behind the founders editions.
Nvidia claims a big boost in performance between the Maxwell cards and the new 10 series of Pascal cards, and the raw numbers seem to support those claims. Of course, we won’t know their real world performance until people in the real world gets their hands on them, but skepticism aside, if you’re on the verge of buying a 900 series Nvidia card, your best bet is to wait for these new cards to release. It’s almost guaranteed that they’ll be faster, but just how much faster remains to be seen.
As for raw performance? The 1080 boasts 9 teraflops (basically a measure of a graphics card’s speed) and the 1070 clocks in at 6.5. For comparison, Nvidia’s Titan X clocks in at 6.6, and the 980 Ti is at 6.5. So just in terms of raw horsepower, the new cards seem as though they’ll trump any of the old ones, but to what extent we’re still gonna have to wait a few weeks to see.
Still, Pascal cards seem as though they’ll live up to the months of hype. Now we just have to wait and see how the AMD Polaris cards stack up to Nvidia’s. Both cards should be out within the next few months, and like Nvidia, AMD has boasted some impressive numbers with Polaris as well.
When the dust settles, it’ll be interesting to see who comes out on top.