NVIDIA kicked off CES 2019 on Sunday night by outlining plans to put to work the new graphics technology of real-time ray tracing in gaming and content creation in an array of laptops and desktops.
NVIDIA CEO Jensen Huang announced the GeForce RTX 2060, which at $349 makes NVIDIA’s new Turing architecture accessible to tens of millions of PC gamers.
NVIDIA says that the RTX 2060 is 60 percent faster on current titles than the prior-generation GTX 1060, NVIDIA’s most popular GPU, and beats the gameplay of the GeForce GTX 1070 Ti. With Turing’s RT Cores and Tensor Cores, it can run Battlefield V with ray tracing at 60 frames per second.
The RTX 2060 features a major upgrade of the core streaming multiprocessor to more efficiently handle the compute-heavy workloads of modern games. It supports concurrent execution of floating point and integer operations, adaptive shading technology and a new unified memory architecture with twice the cache of its predecessor. Modern games can utilize these features to achieve up to 2x the performance of the GTX 1060 GPU, according to NVIDIA.
|NVIDIA GeForce Specification Comparison
|RTX 2060 Founders Edition
|GTX 1060 6GB
|Memory Bus Width
|Single Precision Perf.
FE: 7.9 TFLOPS
|TSMC 12nm "FFN"
|TSMC 12nm "FFN"
The RTX 2060 comes equipped with 6GB of GDDR6 memory and 240 Tensor Cores that can deliver 52 teraflops of deep learning horsepower, which can improve gaming performance through a feature known as Deep Learning Super Sampling (DLSS).
DLSS leverages a deep neural network to extract multidimensional features of the rendered scene and intelligently combine details from multiple frames to construct a high-quality final image. The result is a crisp image with similar quality as traditional rendering, but with higher performance.
Electronic Arts and DICE will shortly release an update to Battlefield V that will incorporate DLSS support, as well as additional optimizations for real-time ray tracing.
Anthem is the anticipated online multiplayer action role-playing game from BioWare and represents Electronic Arts’ first original IP in over a decade. Anthem is also the latest AAA title to announce support for DLSS.
Anthem is poised to be the biggest game in the history of BioWare, a record that includes blockbuster franchises such as Mass Effect, Dragon Age, Baldur’s Gate and Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic.
Game developers in China are stepping up to the world stage in terms of graphics realism, led by NetEase and their hit game, Justice. Announced at GTC China in November, Justice will also use real-time ray tracing and DLSS at the same time. At CES, we featured a Justice tech demo that shows the power of RTX.
The Justice demo is the first RTX game content out of China. The demo features ray-traced reflections, shadows and caustics. It’s the first time that real-time ray tracing has been used for caustics.
Benchmark creator United Laboratories has launched a new benchmark to measure real-time ray-tracing performance. The 3DMark Port Royal benchmark will support ray tracing for realistic specular reflections and pixel-perfect hard shadows as well as DLSS. 3DMark Port Royal will be available Jan. 8, with a DLSS update coming shortly thereafter.
Moscow-based Mundfish is currently crafting Atomic Heart, an alt-universe first-person shooter with a unique look, feel and style set during the height of the Soviet Union. Gamers got a look at an Atomic Heart tech demo highlighting ray-tracing and DLSS at CES.
First previewed at Gamescom, Atomic Heart features RTX with DLSS and multiple varieties of ray tracing. Using visual cues made popular by the great Hollywood directors, long creeping shadows and reflections of what is behind the player give a hint as to the new gameplay made possible by using RTX technologies.
Let's have a look at the specifications of the GeForce RTX 2060 (6GB) Founders Edition.
The card sports 1920 CUDA cores, meaning we’re looking at a 30 SM configuration, versus RTX 2070’s 36 SMs. As the core architecture of Turing is designed to scale with the number of SMs, this means that all of the core compute features are being scaled down similarly, so the 17% drop in SMs means a 17% drop in the RT Core count, a 17% drop in the tensor core count, a 17% drop in the texture unit count, a 17% drop in L0/L1 caches, etc.
Clockspeeds are close to NVIDIA’s other TU106 card, RTX 2070. The base clockspeed is down a bit to 1365MHz, but the boost clock is up a bit to 1680MHz. So on the whole, RTX 2060 is poised to deliver around 87% of the RTX 2070’s compute/RT/texture performance.
The card is shipping with just 6GB of GDDR6 VRAM, as opposed to 8GB on its bigger brother. The result of this is that NVIDIA is not populating 2 of TU106’s 8 memory controllers, resulting in a 192-bit memory bus and meaning that with the use of 14Gbps GDDR6, RTX 2060 only offers 75% of the memory bandwidth of the RTX 2070.
NVIDIA is rating the RTX 2060 for a TDP of 160W. This is down from the RTX 2070, but only slightly, as those cards are rated for 175W.
For a limited time, gamers buying a qualifying GeForce RTX 2060, or a new desktop PC equipped with the RTX 2060, can choose to receive Anthem or Battlefield V. This bundle promotion is available in most regions around the world.
GeForce RTX-powered laptops will be available starting Jan. 29 from the world's top OEMs, including Acer, Alienware, ASUS, Dell, Gigabyte, HP, Lenovo Legion, MSI, Razer and Samsung. They will also be available from local OEMs and system builders, including Aftershock, CyberPower PC, Hasee, Maingear, Mechrevo, Mouse, Origin PC, PC Specialist, Scan, Schenker, Terrans Force and Thunderobot.
Seventeen of the new models feature Max-Q design. Max-Q hits the sweet spot of ultimate GeForce gaming and impossibly sleek design, with laptops thinner than 20 mm, narrow bezels, 144 Hz displays and extraordinary battery life.
Running quieter and cooler, many use NVIDIA Optimus technology to deliver up to 2x more battery life.
With up to 2x the performance of a PlayStation 4 Pro, the laptops can play the latest ray-traced games like Battlefield V at 60 frames per second.
Laptops with the latest GeForce RTX GPUs also are equipped with:
- WhisperMode — enables plugged-in laptops with GeForce Experience to run much quieter while gaming by pacing frame rates while also configuring graphics settings for optimal power efficiency.
- NVIDIA Battery Boost — enables laptops with GeForce Experience to have 2x more battery life, so gamers can outlast opponents.
- NVIDIA G-SYNC — enables refresh rates of up to 144 Hz for tear-free gameplay. (Available on select models.)
Custom boards, including stock-clocked and factory-overclocked models, will also available starting Jan. 15 from top add-in card providers, including ASUS, Colorful, EVGA, Gainward, Galaxy, Gigabyte, Innovision 3D, MSI, Palit, PNY and Zotac.
During his presentation at CEW, Huang segued to a demo: a futuristic hero is equipped with armor, with the whole thing rendered in stunning detail, thanks to real-time ray tracing. This demo, though, has a twist. The hero launches himself into the sky, before sticking a suitably heroic landing. And then he gets stuck. The takeaway: real-time ray tracing makes real-time cinematic graphics possible.
Huang announced that RTX will be able to use Autodesk Arnold for interactive rendering. RTX will be able to be used to do 8K RED video editing.
Nvidia also partners with OBS on pro-quality broadcast streaming on a single PC, rather than the two that are currently required. RTX can also be used for high-end VR — with VirtualLink — a single wire that connects the GPU to the head mounted display — and other features with HTC, which the company will announce later at CES.
G-SYNC Compatible Monitors and BFGD Pre-Orders
NVIDIA also continues to push forward the state of the art for gaming displays. Launched in 2013, G-SYNC introduced gamers to smooth variable refresh rate gameplay, with no screen tearing and no V-Sync input lag.
Huang announced plans to bring NVIDIA’s expertise with display technology to the broader pool of adaptive sync displays, announcing 12 G-SYNC Compatible displays and bringing smooth and beautiful gameplay to more gamers.
There are hundreds of monitor models available capable of variable refresh rates (VRR) using the VESA DisplayPort Adaptive-Sync protocol. However, the VRR gaming experience can vary widely.
To improve the experience for gamers, NVIDIA will test monitors. Those that pass Nvidia's validation tests will be G-SYNC Compatible and enabled by default in the GeForce driver.
G-SYNC Compatible tests will identify monitors that deliver a baseline VRR experience on GeForce RTX 20-series and GeForce GTX 10-series graphics cards, and activate their VRR features automatically.
Support for G-SYNC Compatible monitors will begin Jan. 15 with the launch of Nvidia's first 2019 Game Ready driver. Already, 12 monitors have been validated as G-SYNC Compatible.
For the most demanding gamers, G-SYNC and G-SYNC Ultimate HDR displays featuring an NVIDIA G-SYNC processor will represent the very highest image quality, performance and experience. These displays will benefit from an end-to-end certification process that includes more than 300 tests for image quality.
Soon, ASUS will unleash its curved 35-inch, 3440×1440, 200 Hz G-SYNC Ultimate display. It reaches a bright 1,000 nits, has a 512 zone matrix backlight and HDR.
LG has just started shipping its 34-inch, 3440×1440, 120 Hz 34GK950G display, which is the first G-SYNC monitor to feature LG’s Nano IPS technology.
Acer is showing off its 27-inch, 4K, 144 Hz monitor, which is ready to amp up hi-res, high frame rate gameplay with the latest Turing GPUs.
And Lenovo unveiled its 27-inch, 2560×1440, 240 Hz monitor, bringing esports-class refresh rates to QHD resolution for detailed visuals during gameplay.
In February, G-SYNC HDR tech will be available in 65-inch super-sized NVIDIA Big Format Gaming Displays. They’ll feature a full refresh rate range from 1 Hz to the display panel’s maximum rate, plus other advantages like variable overdrive, refresh rate overclocking, ultra-low motion blur display modes and HDR with 1,000 nits, full matrix backlight and DCI-P3 color.
At the heart of BFGDs is the latest G-SYNC HDR technology that synchronizes the display’s 120 Hz refresh rate to that of the game at every moment in time.
The 4K HDR display also features a full-array direct backlight, 1,000-nit peak luminance and DCI-P3 color gamut.
The integration of the Android TV-based SHIELD into BFGDs allows gamers to switch between gaming and other forms of entertainment.
The optional SHIELD remote and game controller allow for navigation and access to all of the world’s biggest streaming apps, including Netflix, Amazon Video, YouTube and Hulu.
With support for the Google Assistant, the entire experience can be controlled simply by using your voice.
These displays bring a big-screen gaming experience to PC games and are ideal for a gaming den or even your living room.
If you want the biggest and best G-SYNC Ultimate PC gaming display, it’s available for pre-order now from HP. Other Nvidia partners will start taking pre-orders as we approach the launch of BFGDs later this quarter.