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Nvidia RTX 3060 Ti Gets Few Benefits from GDDR6X, Says Reviewer

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Despite its age, the GeForce RTX 3060 Ti is still one of the best graphics cards for modern-day gaming. So there was some excitement when word got out that Nvidia would give the Ampere-based graphics card a GDDR6X makeover. But unfortunately, the memory upgrade may end up disappointing.

Polish news outlet ITHardware has put the GeForce RTX 3060 Ti GDDR6X through its paces against the regular model and the more powerful GeForce RTX 3070. As a quick overview, all three Ampere graphics cards use the same GA104 silicon. The difference is that the GeForce RTX 3070's die comes with 46 enabled SMs for 5,888 CUDA cores, whereas the GeForce RTX 3060 Ti only sports 38 SMs for 4,864 CUDA cores. Of course, it would be foolish to think that a memory upgrade can close a 21% gap in CUDA cores, but it'll be interesting to see how close the GeForce RTX 3060 Ti GDDR6X can get to the GeForce RTX 3070.

Remember that the core specifications for the GeForce RTX 3060 Ti and its GDDR6X counterpart are identical. So we're looking at the same amount of CUDA cores and equal clock speeds. However, the latter arrives with 19 Gbps GDDR6X memory instead of the regular model's 14 Gbps GDDR6 memory. As a result, the GeForce RTX 3060 Ti GDDR6X boasts a memory bandwidth of up to 608.3 GBps, a whopping 36% more than the GDDR6 model. It also commands a 225W TDP, 25W more than the vanilla version.

ITHardware utilized the KFA2 GeForce RTX 3060 Ti GDDR6X 1-Click OC Plus, Asus TUF Gaming GeForce RTX 3060 Ti OC Edition, and Palit GeForce RTX 3070 GamingPro OC for the comparison. The only flaw from the review is that the publication didn't secure the two GeForce RTX 3060 Ti with equal clock speeds for a more fair comparison. The Asus GDDR6 model boosts to 1,755 MHz, and the KFA2 GDDR6X sticks to the reference boost clock (1,665 MHz). The boost clock speed difference will impact the results.

According to the average performance numbers, the GeForce RTX 3060 Ti GDDR6X outperformed the GeForce RTX 3060 Ti by 4% at 1080p and 2% at 1440p and 4K. In return, the GeForce RTX 3070 beat the GeForce RTX 3060 Ti GDDR6X by a 13% margin at 1080p, 14% at 1440p and 4K.

The GeForce RTX 3060 Ti presently starts at $399 and the GDDR6X version has a similar starting price. Even though the performance difference is minuscule, common sense says to grab the GDDR6X variant if available. In other markets where the price varies between the two models, one would need to evaluate if the extra 2% performance uplift is worth the extra money.




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