NVIDIA A100 Ampere benchmarked, is now the 'fastest GPU ever recorded'

NVIDIA's new Ampere-based A100 accelerator destroys benchmarks, NVIDIA's first 7nm GPU is 43% faster than Turing in Octane Render.

8 minutes & 43 seconds read time

NVIDIA announced its Ampere GPU architecture with the introduction of the Ampere A100 accelerator earlier this year, the company's first 7nm GPU -- and also its first PCIe 4.0 card too. But what good is a next generation GPU if it hasn't been benchmarked yet?

This is where Jules Urbach, the CEO of OTOY -- a cloud graphics company famous for its Octane Render software, has benchmarked NVIDIA's new A100 accelerator. The new Ampere-based NVIDIA A100 accelerator was benchmarked on OctaneBench -- a benchmark designed to test the performance in OctaneRender.

OTOY benchmarked the GA100-based card which consists of 6912 CUDA cores, and 40GB of super-fast HBM2 memory.

Ampere is around 43% faster than Turing in OctaneRender, and that's with RTX off. It will be impressive to see how those radically tuned Tensor and RT Cores crank on the Ampere silicon, versus its Turing brethren.

More reading:

NVIDIA A100 Ampere benchmarked, is now the 'fastest GPU ever recorded' 04
  • Traversal coprocessor: We have had more leaks on NVIDIA's next-gen GeForce RTX 3000 series than any family of graphics cards before it, with an interesting "traversal coprocessor" on the new GeForce RTX 3080 and GeForce RTX 3090 graphics cards. You can read more on that here.
  • NVCache: Ampere is meant to have something called NVCache, which would be NVIDIA's own form of AMD's HBCC (High Bandwidth Cache Controller, more on that here). NVCache would use your system RAM and SSD to super-speed game load times, as well as optimizing VRAM usage. You can read more on NVCache here.
  • Tensor Memory Compression: NVCache is interesting, but Tensor Memory Compression will be on Ampere, and will reportedly use Tensor Cores to both compress and decompress items that are stored in VRAM. This could see a 20-40% reduction in VRAM usage, or more VRAM usage with higher textures in next-gen games and Tensor Memory Compression decreasing that VRAM footprint by 20-40%.
  • How fast is the GeForce RTX 3090? Freaking fast according to rumors, with 60-90% more performance than the current Turing-based flagship GeForce RTX 2080 Ti. We could see this huge performance leap in ray tracing titles, but we'll have to wait a little while longer to see how much graphical power NVIDIA crams into these new cards. You can read more on those rumors here.
  • Power hungry: As for power consumption, GA102 reportedly uses 230W -- while 24GB of GDDR6X (which we should see on the new Ampere-based TITAN RTX) consumes 60W of power. You can read more on that here.
  • Production begins soon: NVIDIA is reportedly in the DVT (or Design Validation Test) range of its new GeForce RTX 3000 series graphics cards. Mass production reportedly kicks off in August 2020, with a media event, benchmarks, and more in September 2020 as I predicted many months ago. More on that here.
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I've already written about rumors that NVIDIA's next-gen Ampere GPU architecture would be up to 75% faster than current-gen GPUs such as the Turing architecture, right after rumors that Ampere would offer 50% more performance at half the power of Turing. This is pretty crazy stuff right there.

Not only that, but we've got some rumored specs on the purported GeForce RTX 3080 and GeForce RTX 3070 graphics cards, which will both be powered by NVIDIA's new Ampere GPU architecture.

We've already heard that Ampere would offer 50% more performance at half the power of Turing, which sent the hairs on my neck standing up. Better yet, you can read about the leaked specs on the purported Ampere-based GeForce RTX 3080 and GeForce RTX 3070 right here.

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Even more reading:

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Anthony joined the TweakTown team in 2010 and has since reviewed 100s of graphics cards. Anthony is a long time PC enthusiast with a passion of hate for games built around consoles. FPS gaming since the pre-Quake days, where you were insulted if you used a mouse to aim, he has been addicted to gaming and hardware ever since. Working in IT retail for 10 years gave him great experience with custom-built PCs. His addiction to GPU tech is unwavering and has recently taken a keen interest in artificial intelligence (AI) hardware.

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