Some Benchmarks (Kind Of) From Nvidia's RTX 2080

When Nvidia launched their RTX 20 series cards prior to Gamescom kicking off, there was a notable element missing: benchmarks. Specifically video game benchmarks, a reliable go-to for people assessing the worthiness of a new GPU.

Following a closed-door session with the press, the GPU maker released some more figures about how their cards perform in the real world. Sort of.

As was the case with the Pascal launch a couple of years ago, Nvidia held a closed-door editors day to dive more deeply into the Turing architecture and the RTX feature set.

The majority of that content is under embargo, although press were allowed to report on small snippets. And partially to alleviate concerns about not having anything to report for a long period, Nvidia emailed around some presentation slides from the day, as well as two performance-specific slides for the new RTX 2080 (not the 2080 Ti).

Most of the livestream on Monday evening was theoretical or technique related, and so avoided discussion of real-world frame rates in existing titles that regular gamers would typically use to gauge the worthiness of a new GPU. Two of the slides provided by Nvidia go some way to addressing that void, by comparing the performance of an RTX 2080 to a GTX 1080 across multiple games, running at 4K resolution and with the deep learning super-sampling AA technique enabled (if possible).

Image: Nvidia
Image: Nvidia

As you can quickly see, though, there's some caveats here.

Firstly, it's not known what settings were used for the tests. Some extrapolation can be done from the first slide to get some kind of idea as to how the GTX 1080 performed - if the RTX 2080 is hitting 60 FPS at 4K in HDR, and it's more than 2x the performance of the GTX 1080, then the logical conclusion is that the GTX 1080 isn't playable on whatever settings the test ran at.

The general gist of this is that the RTX 2080 - again, not the 2080 Ti - is about 50 percent faster than the GTX 1080 in these particular games. Typically more details about tests are provided in the footnotes, but the performance images were provided separately and as thus the information is a little murky.

But it does help colour a few things in, at least. Mass Effect: Andromeda, for instance, isn't a game that will take advantage of any of the new RTX technology. It supports HDR, but it's not likely to get DLSS support or special RTX features anytime soon. And as a result, it's useful here to illustrate what users could get out of the RTX 2080 versus the previous generation.

Remember, only 21 games in the near future will have some kind of support for the RTX feature set, the DLSS advanced anti-aliasing, or both. (And if you're looking for a game that does support both, only five titles, Shadow of the Tomb Raider included, do.)

All The Games That Will Use Nvidia's RTX Tech (So Far)

What developers can do with real-time ray-tracing is pretty cool. Question is. what games can you play in the near future that will actually take advantage of it?

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But it's still helpful for framing expectations. And if you're about to drop $1899 on a Founders Edition RTX 2080 Ti, or even the $1200 for the RTX 2080 FE model, it's the kind of info that's handy to have.

The author travelled to Gamescom as a guest of Nvidia.


    So the RTX 2080 is almost twice the cost of my GTX 1080 but only 50% better (and as we all know these provided benchmarks are always exaggerations, so it's probably like 35% better on average).
    That would be terrible value as a regular upgrade (say it being a 1080ti, not RTX 2080) let alone the fact generations are supposed to get better performance/$ not just increased max performance.
    All in all definitely gonna skip this Gen unless prices crash hard after a few months.

      I think you've nailed it. If they're saying 50%, then my real world expectation would also be ~35%. The 1080 Ti is already around the 25-30% ballpark so that's not particularly compelling.

      Having seen the video of the Raytracing demo at 1080p60, I don't really see it as a winner for gamers. Sure it looks prettier/more realistic, and for tech demo type situations it's great, but nobody I know would trade 4k60+ or 1440p144+ for it.

      Basically unless you really HAVE to have 4k60+ with a 2080 Ti, I can't see a compelling reason for not just buying a 1080/Ti.

      It's not twice the cost of your 1080 at launch though is it? The 1080 founders edition was 699usd at launch and this is 799usd. You can't compare prices of a newly released product to that of a product that has been out for over two years.

      Also what do you mean only 50% better performance? What exactly were you expecting? 50% is higher than most generational jumps.

        IMO for what they're asking price wise, 50% isn't strong enough. The facts aren't clear enough at this stage to make an educated decision.

        Fair points. Though that was bought a year and a half ago, not recently.

        Let's put it a different way then, RTX 2080 being maybe 50% better than 1080 (likely slightly less) puts it at very similar performance of a 1080ti but costs as much as they did on launch (and $200+ more than you can et them now).
        So in regular non RTX games (ie what 99% of games will likely still be for several years) there has been no performance increase, no power saving and a freeze in price. So basically 2 years and no progress for people other than the 1% who buy the absolute top card regardless of price.

        I don't think losing the fairly normal 1.5 to 2 tier jump in price/performance of most other gens (eg 1070 basically equalling 980ti and 1060 equalling 980) is worth adding a few lightingshadow effects. Not denying RTX will likely become massive but right now it's gonna be like a glorified hair works but you are paying $300 for it.

        Also meant to say, an even clearer example is the 2080ti. It's unlikely it's 50% or more better than the 1080ti yet costs 50% more. So again it's a complete freeze on price to performance and efficiency gains (going by its 285 tdp its gonna be using a decent bit more than a 1080ti).
        So instead of a normal massive generation improvement on price to performance we are getting fancy shadow settings. They do look good, but nowhere near that good.

        Except the benchmarks look really rubbery, and make no sense at all when you compare the CUDA core count.
        I’ll be surprised if it is 25% faster in real life.

    Benchmarks malarkey at launch is NOT a good sign.

    If they had killer performance stats, they'd be releasing them now in black and white. That, plus the massive price increase over the last models has me thinking everyone planning to wait and see on this new direction have the right idea.

    “If the RTX 2080 is hitting 60 FPS at 4K in HDR, and it's more than 2x the performance of the GTX 1080”

    This would make it 100% faster than the 1080, not 50%.

      In that particular game, but not across the board.

    I've never seen a whole lot of value in jumping to the next generation as soon as it comes out, I always skip one. So when everyone is comparing it to the cost of a 1080 it seems no different to the same complaints people had between the 980 and the 1080.

    I have a 970 so I'll gladly drop $1000ish on a 2080 if it means I can finally play Asscrud Orifice in 4k 60hz

      Yeah I'd think if you have a 1080 or 1080 Ti then it is not 'time' for you to be upgrading anyway. I sure wouldn't be upgrading every gen. However, have a new pc with NO graphics card at all (just moving from long time console only to adding a PC) and so putting a 2080 in it is the natural thing to do.

        You could get a GTX 1080 for half the price (or even less second hand from people clearing out for the new cards). And lose little performance.

          Well if the new card is 35-50% faster, that's not 'a little' performance to lose. It puts the 2080 more level with the 1080 Ti, which is basically the same price as the new 2080. Also it wouldn't have support for the ray tracing or DLSS, which IS going to be appearing in games soon and will creep in more and more.

          You're certainly right that I could spend less but I think in my situation it's worth me just spending the money on the new card. I could get the 1080 Ti slightly cheaper than the new card too but again (I'll definitely wait for benchmarks to see how the 1080 Ti and 2080 actually stack up), I'm likely to opt for the new card and get in on those features. I guess if it turns out the 1080 Ti is still a good bit faster than the 2080 I might reconsider but I doubt it.

          I bought a 1440p 144hz monitor for my foray into PC gaming, so that's what I need to power. I've been playing Fortnite in 1080p powered by the integrated graphics in my 8700K currently. Oh lord I want a graphics card...

            Well you've thought it out all thoroughly and didn't blindly pre-order it so I can accept all that reasoning. Hopefully it's better than it seems so you get a nice card.

            I have a 1080ti and a ROG 34inch 100hz 1440p monitor (and a Vive) so I'm also always looking for the best option. At the moment my 1080ti can handle most things on max, but there are some things that it struggles with. I will wait to see how the benchmarks are, but it would be nice to be able to run everything smoothy on my beast monitor.

            Also I have to wait for the RGB cards.... my current 1080ti Lightning Z is a big beautiful thing that I'd have a hard time replacing for a standard looking card.

        I'm still gonna wait for proper benchmarks and the non reference cards to release before I pull the trigger, and upgrade for me is still very much in the *want* category and not a *need*.. I really like the industrial look to the founder edition coolers though.

        going from your comment below though, I'd probably even be looking at the 2070 for 1440p, but again we'll have to wait for proper benchmarks.

          Oh I'm with you on the full benchmarks, I haven't pre-ordered a founder's edition and I'll wait and see the full reviews before I pull any triggers.

    Who even cares about 4K gaming? or 4K anything?

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