Date: Sunday , September 23, 2018
It has now been several days since the release of NVIDIA’s GeForce RTX 2080 Ti and RTX 2080 video cards. By now gamers are fully immersed in the light and glory that is Ray Tracing and DLSS in their games. Gamers are raving at how great the gameplay experience has been improved by NVIDIA RTX features. People are selling their GeForce GTX 1080 Ti’s in droves, and plopping down hard cash on shiny new GeForce RTX video cards. A new world peace has just erupted. Psych, gotcha.
We aren’t exactly reveling in the sweet shiny bath of Ray Traced lights, or high resolution DLSS pristine images. It seems the entire game developer community missed the memo about NVIDIA’s RTX Ray Tracing and DLSS features. As it stands right now, almost a week since launch, there are literally no games that have NVIDIA RTX features enabled. Even if there were, Windows 10 currently does not support these features.
Shadow of the Tomb Raider newly released on September 14th won’t support Ray Tracing till a patch comes out, who knows when. Another Ray Traced game, like Battlefield V has been delayed until November 20. As it stands, there is no way to test real-world gameplay and image quality of NVIDIA GeForce RTX features Ray Tracing and DLSS. The two key components of what make a GeForce RTX card, an RTX card.
As it stands, all we can do is use the video cards as they’ve always been used, for good ole rasterized gaming. That is, gaming as we’ve known it for the last couple decades.
In today’s "Preview" evaluation we are going to take two custom retail ASUS ROG STRIX factory overclocked video cards based on GeForce RTX and evaluate game performance. There will be full reviews to come, but for now, we wanted to give our readers some good solid real-world information to help them in their buying decision at 1440p. A 4K preview will follow this one shortly.
As we mentioned, we have two custom retail boxed ASUS ROG STRIX branded GeForce RTX video cards to test today. We will go into full descriptions and analysis in the full reviews, for now here is a quick summary of specifications as it compares to the reference non-Founders and Founders Edition GeForce RTX 2080 Ti and 2080 specifications.
The ASUS ROG STRIX GeForce RTX 2080 Ti O11G GAMING video card is currently not for sale anywhere yet, but the MSRP will be $1,249. The video card sports a custom cooler with Max Connect Technology and a three Axial-tech fan design. There is a dual-BIOS switch atop the video card to put the video card in a Performance state or a Quiet state. Performance state is the default shipping mode, and this is the mode we tested in. The video card runs at a factory overclocked "GAMING Mode" frequency out-of-the-box. There is a software selectable higher "OC Mode" but you must install GPU Tweak II to achieve it via software. We are testing in the default shipping "GAMING Mode" frequency.
The default shipping "GAMING Mode" factory overclock is 1350MHz for the base clock and 1650MHz for the boost clock. A non-Founders Edition reference GeForce RTX 2080 Ti runs at a base clock of 1350MHz and a boost clock of 1545MHz. A Founders Edition reference GeForce RTX 2080 Ti runs at a base clock of 1350MHz and a boost clock of 1635MHz. As you can see, the ASUS ROG STRIX RTX 2080 Ti runs 105MHz faster than the non-Founders Edition and 15MHz faster than the Founders Edition. Keep in mind that with the custom cooling GPU Boost may set the real-time actual frequency higher while gaming on the ASUS ROG STRIX model.
The ASUS ROG STRIX GeForce RTX 2080 Ti comes equipped with 11GB of GDDR6 running at 14GHz on a 352-bit bus. That provides a memory bandwidth of 616GB/sec. The video card requires two 8-pin power connectors and the recommended PSU is 650W. The video card measures: 12x5.13x2.13 inches.
The ASUS ROG STRIX GeForce RTX 2080 O8G GAMING video card is currently $869.99 at Newegg. The video card sports the same custom cooler with Max Connect Technology and a three Axial-tech fan design. Same as the above video card there is a dual-BIOS switch to put the card in Performance or Quiet mode. There is also a "GAMING Mode" frequency and "OC Mode" frequency. The video card ships in the "GAMING Mode" frequency and for "OC Mode" you must select it in software with GPU Tweak II.
The default shipping "GAMING Mode" factory overclock is 1515MHz for the base clock and 1860MHz for the boost clock. The non-Founders Edition reference GeForce RTX 2080 runs at a base clock of 1515MHz and a boost clock of 1710MHz. The Founders Edition reference GeForce RTX 2080 runs at a base clock of 1515MHz and a boost clock of 1800MHz. Therefore, the ASUS ROG STRIX RTX 2080 runs 150MHz faster than the non-Founders Edition and 60MHz faster than the Founders Edition. Once again, the improved cooling should allow GPU Boost to well exceed the boost clocks.
The ASUS ROG STRIX GeForce RTX 2080 comes equipped with 8GB of GDDR6 running at 14GHz on a 256-bit bus. That provides 448GB/sec of memory bandwidth. The video card requires two 8-pin connectors and a recommended PSU of 650W. The card measurements are: 12x5.13x2.13 inches.
In our full evaluation we will show you graphs that show the GPU frequency of each video card in-game for long gaming sessions. This will show how the GPU frequency operates, fluctuates (if any) and the maximum and minimum frequencies of the GPUs while gaming after the GPU has been heat-soaked. Kyle just completed a full Overclocking review of the RTX 2080 Founders Edition that is worth taking a look at.
For this preview, we ran some tests already to make sure the GPUs were performing normally. We are happy to report that on both ASUS video cards the real-time frequency while gaming was well above the rated ASUS factory overclock boost clock.
In the case of the ASUS ROG STRIX 2080 Ti it was running between 1800MHz and 1920MHz, averaging close to 1850MHz. This is well above the boost clock of 1650MHz. In the case of the ASUS ROG STRIX 2080 it was running between 1920MHz and 1980MHz, averaging about 1950MHz. That is above the boost clock of 1860MHz. Therefore, performance should be at the high-end level of the new RTX GPUs.
While many other sites have tested performance across the 4K spectrum, we feel 1440p has sort of gotten the raw deal this generation. Therefore, for our first preview evaluation today, we will show all results at 1440p. Note that yes, there can possibly some CPU limited situations with the GeForce RTX 2080 Ti, and we will point those out as we see those.
We are going to use five games today: Shadow of the Tomb Raider in DX12, Far Cry 5, Kingdom Come: Deliverance with high resolution textures, Wolfenstein II: The New Colossus under the Vulkan API, and Mass Effect: Andromeda at maximum settings.