Nvidia GTX1080 Founders Edition Review
Published: 21st May 2016 | Source: nVidia | Price: |
What else is new?
Beyond the obvious elements such as the amount of CUDA Cores and the clock speed, what else does GTX 1080 bring to the party?
GPU Boost 3.0
If you're the type of person who wasn't comfortable overclocking a card that costs a months wages, then the GPU Boost 2.0 technology was a star. It enabled the card to keep overclocking all the while there was thermal headroom so that you ended up with an on-the-fly overclock, yet the moment you were back at your desktop checking Twitter it backed right off to save you power. There was, however, a problem inherent to the way the technology was implemented in that it linearly matched the voltage offset, leaving some un-utilised space between the potential maximum and the actual clock.
The Pascal GPU comes equipped with GPU Boost 3.0 which has negated this minor flaw, allowing you to take full advantage of any headroom available. If you're the type who likes manually tinkering about you can also plot the voltage offset curve yourself to ensure that every last polygon is wrung from the GTX 1080.
We spoke before about how marketing brochures always list the proprietary technologies on a particular model, which are usually interesting for about a month until it's clear that no developer will take advantage of them. Mantle. G-SYNC. 3D. The list of nascent offerings that never evolved into fully-fledged market-defining technologies is long. The latest attempt by nVidia to bring the clarity of a VSYNC image with the high-frame-rates and thus responsiveness demanded by, and available to, e-Sports titles is Fast Sync. It promises all the triple digit FPS you require whilst never tearing, nor demanding specific hardware to take advantage of it. Think of it like Adaptive VSYNC on steroids. With the need of developers to provide their products to the widest possible audience the limitations of the aforementioned technologies were obvious, so it's nice that this is just related to the GPU and not reliant upon whichever monitor you happen to own.
Just like 3D was a few years ago, the latest display technology that is all the buzzword rage is HDR - High Dynamic Range - which promises a far broader palette than has previously been obtainable. Much like GSYNC this requires you to have a HDR capable display, something which is unlikely to reach a mass audience before we've moved on to Volta. Still, if you're particularly flush with disposable income then it's nice to know you can take full advantage of your latest purchase.
Lastly Ansel. Something which might slip under the radar with all the talk about 3D Mark scores or what ever else will dominate discussion, Ansel unleashes your creativity. Have you ever had an awesome gaming moment you captured with a screenshot but wished it didn't have the UI in it, or wasn't limited to your own viewpoint? Ansel is that technology. It's basically a screenshot mode that gives you a free camera. With a multitude of filters, enhancement options, and even CUDA image stitching allowing you to create seriously high resolution images or even ones importable into a VR system or your phones 360° image viewer, it's something that's best explained in images rather than words.