Pre­par­ing for the Next-Gen GPUs

Nvidia’s next GPU ar­chi­tec­ture is likely com­ing in Au­gust

Maximum PC - - IN THE LAB - JARRED WAL­TON, SE­NIOR EDI­TOR

FALL IS FAST AP­PROACH­ING, and we should see new GPUs from Nvidia in the near fu­ture. The com­pany has been tight-lipped as usual, but I do know a few things, and can make some rea­son­able guesses at the rest. Co­de­named Tur­ing, the GTX 1180 (pos­si­bly 2080) will be the first com­mer­cial use of GDDR6, and it will be man­u­fac­tured on TSMC’s 12nm FinFET process. Nvidia has big plans for Gamescom, which means hard­ware should be in our hands shortly be­fore you read this.

Nvidia looks set to tran­si­tion to a split ar­chi­tec­ture this round. Pascal had pro­fes­sional fea­tures, such as half-speed FP64 and HBM2, on cer­tain chips (GP100 ver­sus GP104, for ex­am­ple), and it looks like Volta will be ex­clu­sively the do­main of su­per­com­put­ing and pro­fes­sional so­lu­tions. Tur­ing will likely skip the Ten­sor cores and have 1/32-speed FP64, but the dou­ble-- speed FP16 should be present. GDDR6 will move from 11GT/s for the 1080 Ti to 14–18GT/s for Tur­ing, prob­a­bly 16GT/s, for a nearly 50 per­cent gen­er­a­tional in­crease in band­width.

I’m look­ing for­ward to see­ing a sin­gle graph­ics card that can break 60fps at 4K ul­tra set­tings in most games. Now that 4K 120Hz dis­plays are avail­able, the need for faster graph­ics cards is more press­ing than ever. If the 1180 fol­lows past pat­terns, it will be 20–35 per­cent faster than the 1080 Ti, which means games where the 1080 Ti comes up a bit short should fi­nally move over the 60fps bar­rier—or I can just drop set­tings a notch, and hit 90–120fps for ul­tra­smooth high-res gam­ing. I can’t wait!

As for AMD, Vega 7nm should ar­rive by the end of 2018, but will it be for gamers? I hope so, as there’s noth­ing else on the roadmaps.

What­ever the next GeForce is called, it will be fast.

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