Date: Sunday , January 20, 2019
At CES 2019 NVIDIA announced the announced the NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2060 video card. This is the least expensive video card to support NVIDIA’s RTX features including NVIDIA Ray Tracing and DLSS. It also has the least amount of RT Cores and Tensor cores out of the lineup of RTX video cards. Priced at $349.99 MSRP, it is poised to bring NVIDIA Ray Tracing capability into more gamer’s hands. Unfortunately for it, there is only one game currently available that supports NVIDIA Ray Tracing, Battlefield V, but that hasn’t stopped us from diving deep into the waters of NVIDIA Ray Tracing performance across its RTX lineup.
If you have not been following our in-depth coverage of NVIDIA Ray Tracing performance in Battlefield V here is what you can catch up on. Battlefield V NVIDIA Ray Tracing performance on RTX 2080 Ti, Battlefield V NVIDIA Ray Tracing performance on RTX 2080, and Battlefield V NVIDIA Ray Tracing performance on RTX 2070.
We also tested the possibility of CPU Cores affecting NVIDIA Ray Tracing performance by also comparing on a 9700K CPU and then a 9900K CPU. Our results are that our fast 5GHz 4C/8T 7700K CPU is giving us the best gameplay experience and performance with DXR enabled in Battlefield V.
Today we are going to conclude our testing of the NVIDIA RTX GPU lineup by testing the new GeForce RTX 2060. We are going to find out what kind of performance it can deliver with NVIDIA Ray Tracing in Battlefield V. We are using a MSI GeForce RTX 2060 GAMING Z 6GB video card ($389.99 MSRP) for testing.
We will be performing a full review of this video card after this evaluation, which means we will be testing the "non-RTX" performance in all other games that RTX 2060 can deliver.
We will go over the full specifications of the NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2060 in our full review. For now, just note the differences in RT Core and Tensor Core count and VRAM capacity and bandwidths which are relevant to NVIDIA Ray Tracing performance in Battlefield V.
RTX 2060 has 30 RT Cores and 240 Tensor Cores. It also only has 6GB of VRAM. With the reduction in cores and the limitation of 6GB of VRAM we are initially concerned about the performance of NVIDIA Ray Tracing in Battlefield V.
We have concluded in previous testing that GeForce RTX 2070 was not playable with NVIDIA Ray Tracing at 1080p, and not the card for it, and it has more cores and 8GB of VRAM. We also concluded that the GeForce RTX 2080 was the entry level card for 1080p NVIDIA Ray Tracing performance with the 2080 Ti being the best overall. It is going to be a struggle for the GeForce RTX 2060. Jensen did show us the RTX 2060 running BFV at 1440p on stage at the launch event, so surely we should expect real gameplay to "just work" at 1440p, right?
The video card we are using for testing today is a retail custom video card from MSI, the MSI GeForce RTX 2060 GAMING Z 6GB card. This is MSI’s fastest version under the GAMING Z branding. It has a rated boost clock of 1830MHz. The reference specification for RTX 2060 is 1680MHz boost clock. Therefore, the boost clock is already set very high on this MSI video card.
Since it also has very good cooling GPU Boost is able to clock the GPU much greater than the boost clock. In our testing the MSI GeForce RTX 2060 GAMING Z 6GB video card maintains 1965MHz while gaming in Battlefield V. This means we have a good representation of a high-end, highly clocked video card.
The RTX 2060, and of course MSI GeForce RTX 2060 GAMING Z has 6GB of GDDR6 VRAM on board. In our last round of GeForce RTX 2080 Ti testing we looked specifically at VRAM utilization with NVIDIA Ray Tracing in Battlefield V. We found that the game eats VRAM when DX12 is initialized with DXR turned on. The game was consuming so much VRAM that it was at or near 8GB of usage just at 1080p with DXR enabled and exceeded 8GB at "Ultra" DXR!
This makes us worry about the 6GB of VRAM capacity on this video card. Will it be a hindrance? We are going to look at VRAM utilization at every setting in this evaluation today.