When AMD and NVIDIA showed off their brand new graphics cards earlier this year, it was all about virtual reality. The best of the best. Buttery smooth frame rates at 1440p and beyond.
That's all well and good, but not if you're someone who only has a few hundred dollars to spend or you want to build a PC on a console-equivalent budget. As the months have passed, however, both companies have lifted the veil on their budget offerings. And earlier this week under embargo, NVIDIA did precisely that when they announced the GeForce GTX 1050.
Two models of the GTX 1050 were announced: a 2GB model priced at $US109 with 640 CUDA cores, and the GTX 1050 Ti with 4GB VRAM and 768 CUDA cores for $US139. Both will go on sale internationally from October 25, and both cards have an estimated power usage of 75W.
NVIDIA stressed that the card could also operate without the use of a power connector, meaning users will be able to upgrade their computer without having to be concerned about their power supply. NVIDIA's partners — Gigabyte, ASUS, ZOTAC, MSI, ASUS and so on — will be releasing models of the GTX 1050 and GTX 1050 Ti with 6-pin power connectors, however, so check before buying.
The GTX 1050 will start at a base clock of 1300MHz, although NVIDIA said during internal testing they'd seen boards hit as high as (approximately) 1900MHz with overclocking. I wouldn't expect consumers to get anywhere near that level of performance when GTX 1050 and GTX 1050 Ti boards become available in Australia, but getting a few extra hundred megahertz should be more than managable.
It's worth noting that there aren't any Founders Editions of the GTX 1050 or 1050 Ti this time around. That's understandable given that the GTX 1050 is targeted at the very low end of the PC market, the card for people just getting into PC gaming for the first time.
As part of the same presentation, NVIDIA said the GTX 1050 was a 3x performance increase on the GTX 650 and could hit a 60fps on modern games under certain conditions. The GTX 1050 supposedly hit 60fps in Gears of War 4 and GTA 5 on medium settings, and 60fps on World of Warcraft: Legion, Dota 2 and Overwatch on high settings, although we'll have more specifics on October 26 when the global embargo for benchmarks lifts. We'll also share local pricing with you when that becomes available.