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NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1080 Review - Hail to the King, Baby

By: Anthony Garreffa | NVIDIA GeForce GPU in Video Cards | Posted: May 17, 2016 1:00 pm
TweakTown Rating: 95%Manufacturer: NVIDIA

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PC Perspective


GeForce GTX 1080 Founders Edition Review


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It's So Good, It's Like NVIDIA Has Hacks Turned On


The GeForce GTX 1080 is an incredible card; it's almost like NVIDIA has hacks turned on. I feel like I need to question how they were able to do this, but it's the holy trinity of technology that has allowed NVIDIA to make such a gigantic leap with the GTX 1080.




First, we have the mouth-watering new 16nm FinFET process, the next-gen Pascal architecture, and then the new GDDR5X technology from Micron. All of these technologies allow NVIDIA to leap frog AMD in such a big way that it's almost embarrassing. The GTX 980 Ti and Titan X are nothing to GTX 1080, which just destroys them in everything - 1080p, 1440p, 4K, and even VR. Nothing steps in the way of the GTX 1080.



When AMD launched the Radeon R9 Fury X with its HBM1 technology, this is how I expected to feel. Blown away. Surprised. Excited. Yet, I wasn't - the R9 Nano was an amazing card, and still is - but the new GeForce GTX 1080 is just unbelievable.



Final Thoughts


The GeForce GTX 1080 is the most exciting video card in years, blending the new 16nm FinFET process and next-gen Pascal architecture into an amazing mix of GPU technology. Right behind those two exciting factors of the GTX 1080 is the 8GB of GDDR5X that NVIDIA has used on the GTX 1080 alone, with the GTX 1070 powered by the cheaper, slower GDDR5 technology.




All three of these technologies are infused together for the GeForce GTX 1080, a card that not only has more performance than every other single-GPU video card on the market, it uses far less power. We have a card on our hands that used just 230W of power, which I have to highlight as incredible, compared to the Titan X and its 315W and the Radeon R9 Fury X with its 300W of power consumption.


We also have a huge improvement to the VR side of things, with VR Works Audio and improved rendering in VR for additional performance - something that truly makes it the new monster VR video card. We have a GTX 980 Ti here in the labs and it powers my HTC Vive setup, and in the coming days and weeks I'll be shifting over to the GTX 1080 and seeing how the performance and VR experience is amplified from the new GTX 1080.


Something that NVIDIA made a big deal about with the new GeForce GTX 1080 is that it had some impressive overclocking headroom on both the GPU and GDDR5X. Instead of having a single page for the OC results, we're going to be following up with a smaller article that looks at the overclocking experience, performance and results on the GTX 1080. NVIDIA has teased the GPU is capable of 2GHz+ on the GTX 1080 Founders Edition, so I'm expecting somewhere in the vicinity, with a nice boost in performance.


I've known for a while now that whatever Pascal-based GeForce video card that NVIDIA released would kick ass, but by this much? The new GeForce GTX 1080 is an absolute monster of a video card, completely beating down everything in its path, including the HBM1-based Radeon R9 Fury X from AMD. We tested the more mid-range R9 390X 8GB, and the GTX 1080 beat it down for its lunch money like a bully in the school yard. There's nothing that can take on the GTX 1080, not even the $999 beast in the form of the Titan X.




But, it's not all about brute performance and speed. The GeForce GTX 1070 with its 8GB of GDDR5 (not the GDDR5X found on the GTX 1080) will be the big seller while the GTX 1080 will become the new GTX 980 Ti/Titan X. The GTX 970 was a massive hit, and still is one of the best cards you can buy - with this going back to the GTX 770, GTX 670, and so on. The expensive card is usually 15-30% faster, but also rocks a 50%+ increase in price.


AMD is not going to be able to compete against the GeForce GTX 1080, and that's not a bad thing. AMD's upcoming Polaris 10 GPU will reportedly be powering a slew of new mid-range video cards that will be priced at under $299. At this price point, AMD has nothing to worry about with the GTX 1080 because NVIDIA's latest and greatest is a smaller part of the market compared to the high-end/enthusiast market.


All in all, NVIDIA has absolutely blown the doors off of the GPU game with the GeForce GTX 1080. This is the card you've been waiting for, especially if you skipped over the GTX 980 Ti. With our whole system using 230W, running silently, and pushing through games at up to 4K and VR, the GTX 1080 is an incredible new video card that deserves all the attention it gets.

Product Summary Breakdown

TweakTown award
Performance (overclocking, power)95%
Quality (build, design, cooling)95%
General Features (display outputs, etc)95%
Bundle, Packaging & Software95%
Value for Money95%
Overall TweakTown Rating95%

The Bottom Line: NVIDIA is here to kick ass and chew bubblegum with the GeForce GTX 1080, and it's definitely not all out of gum. The GTX 1080 is a tour de force of technology, engineering, herbs and spices and a shot of whiskey. It's bloody amazing.

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