Nvidia's first consumer graphics cards based on its Pascal architecture are here: the GTX 1080 and GTX 1070. The GTX 1080 will retail for $599 (~£450), $50 more than the GTX 980 cost at launch, while the GTX 1070 will retail for $379 (~£270), again $50 more than the previous generation card—but only for cards made by partners like Asus and MSI.
Those after Nvidia's stock cooler design have to pick up "Founders Edition" cards bought directly from Nvidia.com, which will sell for $699 and $449 respectively. The 1080 launches on May 27, with the 1070 following on June 10.
The performance boost comes from the combination of a new GPU microarchitecture (Pascal) with a leaner TSMC 16nm FinFET manufacturing process. The GTX 1080 also makes use of faster Micron GDDR5X memory, resulting in an impressive 10Gbps memory pipe. Meanwhile, the GTX 1070 will use standard GDDR5 memory.
Nvidia has also finally updated its stock cooler design, which debuted with the GTX Titan back in 2013. It is, as the leaks suggested, a metallic shroud with a striking angular design that sports a single cooling fan in a blower design at the rear. Alongside the new cooler, Nvidia claims that it has improved power delivery too (120mV peak-to-peak), allowing for more stable overclocking.
Both features come at a price though. The new cooler will only feature on "Founders Edition" cards bought directly from Nvidia.com. The GTX 1080 Founders Edition will retail for $699, with the GTX 1070 Founders Edition costing $449. Those after the lower priced cards will have to look to partners like MSI and ASUS, which will use their own cooler designs.
Personally I've always been a fan of Nvidia. Do I so much appreciate their efforts to make speed affordable.