Nvidia has just announced a new card in its lineup: the GTX 1060 3GB, set to retail with a starting price of £189.99 including VAT.
The GTX 1060 originally launched
as a 6GB only card last month. AMD, meanwhile, chose to launch both the RX 480
and RX 470
with 8GB and 4GB variants. Those cards with the smaller 4GB frame buffer have been credited for offering solid price-performance: often they will offer virtually the same performance as the 8GB cards but for a lesser price thanks to not having as much GDDR5 onboard. Now, it seems, Nvidia is following suit, by offering a GTX 1060 with a 3GB frame buffer instead of the usual 6GB and dropping the starting MSRP from £239.99 to £189.99, making this the first sub-£200 graphics card to use the firm's 16nm Pascal architecture.
The GTX 1060 3GB actually differs from the GTX 1060 6GB in more ways than one. A different configuration of the 4.4 billion transistor, 200mm2
GP106 GPU sees one streaming multiprocessor (SM) disabled in the new card, leaving it with nine instead of the 10 found in the fully enabled part. This drops the CUDA core count from 1,280 to 1,152 and the texture unit count from 80 to 72.
Despite this specification difference, Nvidia is retaining the GTX 1060 nomenclature for both parts, and will not be offering different frame buffer options for either configuration - all GTX 1060 3GB cards will have 1,152 cores, and all GTX 1060 6GB cards stick to the full 1,280.
Other than that, however, the cards are the same. All 48 ROPs are intact, as is the 1.5MB L2 cache and six 32-bit memory controllers totalling a 192-bit interface. Reference clock speeds are also the same: 1,506MHz base for the core (1,708MHz boost) and 2GHz for the memory giving us an effective speed of 8Gbps and a total memory bandwidth of 192GB/sec. Both cards have the same TDP too: 120W.
Nvidia expects retail availability of the GTX 1060 3GB to filter through 'over the next few weeks
', and a driver update due today will also ready systems for the new card. You can expect all the usual board partners to reveal their offerings in the coming days but a Founders Edition card for this SKU has not been announced by Nvidia (we just didn't know what other image to use, okay?).