Update August 2, 2016: The new, Pascal-based, GTX Titan X has just been released and you can now spend your $1,200 on the most powerful consumer GPU that’s ever been made.
If you can’t quite stretch to that much, check out our review of the Nvidia GTX 1060, a much more affordable GeForce.
But it’s only available from Nvidia’s regional GeForce online store, with the board partners unlikely to get a look in any time soon. And if you want a UK price…this beefy new card is selling for £1,099. There will though be full machines with the cards pre-installed if you’re looking to drop a sizeable chunk of cash on a big-boy rig straight off the bat.
All the important information has been pre-released, but we’ll find out for sure whether Nvidia’s claims of a 60% performance boost over the existing Maxwell-based GTX Titan X hold true once we’ve got the hardware in our hands.
Considering the actual size of the GP102 silicon is around 27% smaller than the GM200 chip of the original GTX Titan X that would be an impressive achievement for the 16nm process.
But while it is the most powerful consumer GPU around, it’s not the outright fastest around. Nvidia unveiled their Quadro P6000 pro-graphics card at SIGGRAPH, where AMD strapped an SSD to their latest professional offering. The P6000 is also based on the new GP102 silicon, but uses the full potential of that serious Pascal-based processor. While the GTX Titan X has to make do with 3,584 CUDA cores, the full GP102 GPU in the P6000 has 3,840.
But the Quadro is probably going to be around $6,000, so I wouldn’t worry overmuch about the new GTX Titan X being a second tier offering…
Original story July 22, 2016: Nvidia’s big bossman, Jen-Hsun Huang, announced the new GTX Titan X at an event about artificial intelligence at Stanford University in California last night. And the big news: it’s based on a new Pascal GPU and will be out on August 2, less than two weeks away.
But get saving because the Nvidia GTX Titan X is going to cost a rather staggering $1,200, which is a couple hundred dollars more than the mighty Maxwell Titan X cost when it first launched.
The new top-end graphics card will be based on the new GP102 GPU, a hefty 16nm graphics processor packing in an astonishing 12 billion transistors. That’s a rise of four billion on the original Titan X and almost five billion more than the GTX 1080.
Inside are 3,584 CUDA cores, likely arrayed across 28 Streaming Microprocessors (SMs), which is exactly the same number Nvidia jammed into the super high-end Tesla P100 card designed for serious supercomputing. But they couldn’t use the exact same GP100 chip that processing beast uses for the consumer variant, because for the new GTX Titan X Nvidia still aren’t using high-bandwidth 3D memory. Like the GTX 1080, the Pascal GTX Titan X is going to be using GDDR5X, but with the same 12GB configuration used in that previous Titan X.
Compared with the existing Pascal-based cards though the GP102 silicon is being clocked at a relatively modest speed. The new Titan X will be released sporting a base clock of 1,417MHz, boosting to 1,531MHz on average. Though if it’s got the same sort of overclocking headroom as the current Pascal GPUs then we should see clockspeeds in the wild going far higher than that – though maybe not all the way up to 2GHz with that much logic inside it.
On the performance front Nvidia is estimating a 60% speed bump over the existing GTX Titan X, which isn’t surprising given the GTX 1080 is able to outmuscle Nvidia’s previous big boy card.
“We said our GTX 1080 delivers an “irresponsible amount of performance.” It was a bit reckless,” said Nvidia’s senior PR manager, Bryan Del Rizzo. “But this is even more reckless.”
It’s also going to be a bit more reckless about power too in order to keep that beefy graphics processor fed. The new Nvidia GTX Titan X is going to be a full 250W card with one 8-pin and one 6-pin connector to glug the juice from your PSU.
So where can you get one, Mr. and Mrs. Moneybags? This is one of the really interesting things – Nvidia are only selling the new GTX Titan X through their own retail site, meaning there aren’t going to be any coming from the board partners at all. You will still be able to buy machines with them in as system integrators will be able to stock them, but for the wealthy upgrade crowd there’s only one place to go.
Given the likely very limited numbers of cards that are going to be produced that’s probably not a huge surprise – if you thought it was tough finding stock of a GTX 1080, a chip of the complexity of the GP102 is not going to be easy to produce in huge numbers…