Famous for an obvious reason
This is the one that’s destined to top Steam Charts for the most popular gaming card on the freaking planet for at least as long as its forefather or fore grandfather the GTX 1060 did. But that assumes a couple of things, doesn’t it? One, that it’s any good. And of course number two, is that NVidia can make enough of them.
It got even better with time.
It’s hard to believe that the GTX 1060 is nearly five years old at this point. That’s how long it’s been since anything has even come close to the level of bang for the buck that this card represented. It beat out the contemporary Polaris-based RX 480 and AMD’s hey at least you tried RX 580 Refresh, then NVidia themselves tried to make the magic lightning strike again.
Gamers craving for more and got it in the shape of the RTX 3060
First with the RTX 2060, then with their GTX 1600 series. I mean those are both good products but 1060 is still the top dog on Steam’s Hardware Survey, so it’s clear that mid-range gamers were hungry for something better. That’s why so much is riding on the RTX 3060.
NVidia will gain your attention.
NVidia is explicitly targeting you, the nearly 10% of you out there who are using a 1060 and spoiler alert, this is it. This is going to be the GPU to finally topple it. At least that’s what someone would say, if the replacement were coming in at the same price point while the $329 US price tag does make sense next to the GTX 1060 6 GB Founders Edition at $299 at least after we adjusted for inflation there is no Founder’s Edition this time around just a reference design.
The RTX tax
So you are still paying an RTX tax. This may give AMD and in with their tease there of what is almost certainly their RX 6700 series.
50% more GDDR6 memory
Unlike the RTX 3060 TI which does have a Founder’s Edition, the RTX 3060 comes with 50% more GDDR6 memory but that’s constrained to a slower 192-bit bus for its faster-clocked CUDA Cores.
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Well, they’re faster clocks, but they’ve been cut to just shy of three-quarters of its TI sibling.
Compared to the GTX 1060 though, the RTX 3060 gets all the goodies that come with Nvidia’s latest Ampere architecture like Ray Tracing, HDMI 2.1 for up to 4K 120 Hertz displays, Nvidia broadcast, and the Turing NVENC engine that’s just so good for streaming.
Nvidia will probably be more than worth it.
That means that as long as performance is good the extra ask from NVidia is likely to be more than worth it. Starting the Shadow of the Tomb Raider then, it’s no surprise that in traditional rasterization the GTX 1060 falls way behind the new RTX 3060.
What is a little surprising?
And this could be good news for you. Is that the RTX 2060 SUPER come so close?
So if you did shell out for the last generation, well you shouldn’t feel too compelled to upgrade here. Back to those who didn’t though, well this might finally be the card that makes RTX mainstream.
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I mean check this out, with RTX on the 3060 managers higher performance numbers at 1080p and the RTX 3060 manages to significantly outpace the last-gen RTX 2060 SUPER, let alone the geriatric 1060 where that card it’s rendering performance can charitably be described as adequate if you don’t value your time.
The RTX 3060 TI widens its lead.
The RTX 3060 easily doubles even the 2060 SUPER scores across the board up until we hit OctaneBench where the gap does narrow but then interestingly, the RTX 3060 TI widens its lead.
The RTX 3060 draws more power than the 6-Pin GTX 1060, and this is reflected in its official power rating. At peak, it drew a cool 40 watts less though than the more powerful RTX 3060 TI with a peak of just over 160 watts.
Let’s do some comparison.
That’s good, but what’s more, impressive is that it drew less power than even the RTX 2060 SUPER which peaked at over 175 watts. While the older GTX 1060 certainly did manage lower power consumption on average though, it manages to spike to around the same maximum. So RTX 3060 is looking pretty darn good as far as thermals and power consumption. I mean overall there’s very little to complain about in terms of performance. It’s just that, and this is at risk of beating a dead horse here.
Availability may be a different issue. Now, these may be more widely available than previous RTX 30 series launches but while Nvidia seemed confident that there would be lots of supply, a couple of retailers that we’ve spoken to locally have some doubts about that, at least out of the gate.
So if that’s true, today could be yet another payday for filthy scalpers. We can only hope then that supply is good enough that demand falls and those scalpers end up with a whole bunch of extra cards they have to liquidate into actual gamers as quickly as possible. So that’s it, go upgrade your GTX 1060 or your RX 580, guys, it is time