The wait is finally over, NVIDIA has announced their next generation GPUs aimed at gamers. Being branded under GeForce RTX, these next gen graphics cards will bring a wealth of new technology that will allow games to run at higher FPS and the new chips also introduce real-time ray tracing.
NVIDIA is promising big performance gains with the new generation of cards and there is no doubt that these cards will best the prior generation with new Turing GPU architecture. But for most users, the improvements will come with the new real-time ray tracing capabilities.
Simply put, ray tracing is how light reacts with objects in the digital world. With this new functionality, lighting inside the virtual worlds is about to become significantly more realistic in how it reflects and refracts off of objects in the environment.
While this lighting functionality could be constructed with current gen chips, it requires a significant amount of overhead to achieve realistic results. The benefit of the new generation of chips is that this effect can be done in real-time with less impact on the performance of the game which gives the end-user, a more immersive gaming experience.
Of course, the adaption of this technology will take time and older games won’t be able to take advantage of this functionality but NVIDIA is working with gaming studios to make it easier to include support for real-time ray tracing.
That being said, games are already being built that will support this feature including the upcoming title, Shadow of the Tomb Raider.
The new Turing chip will be the first consumer GPU with Tensor cores for AI processing. NVIDIA is attempting to use this new functionality to make its cards smarter and better at adapting to the specific game that you are playing to maximize the graphical performance of the application.
The new series of GPUs will be under the RTX 20XX branding with the top end being the 2080Ti. If you are familiar with how NVIDIA has been branding their various GPUs, that naming convention does not change with this generation of cards.
If you want to buy these new cards, they will be shipping soon but be prepared to dip into your wallet as the GeForce RTX 2080 Founders Edition will set you back $799 and the 2080 Ti Founders Edition runs$1,199. Both of these cards are up for pre-order now and will ship in September.
If you don’t want the top of the line card, the 2070 will cost $599.
These new GPUs will likely stick around for the next couple of years; if you like to be on the bleeding edge of gaming GPUs, now is the time to buy. But, if you don’t need all the new performance, you can likely find a good deal in the near future for a 1080Ti.