Nvidia GeForce GTX 980 Ti – performance at a price

Nvidia recently unveiled its latest gaming graphics powerhouse – the GeForce GTX 980 Ti.

The emergence of the GTX 980 Ti follows the recent release of the GTX 960, 970, 980, and Titan X cards, with the Ti punted as delivering “an unbeatable 4K and virtual reality experience”.

4K gaming – 3840 x 2160 – and virtual reality are the latest benchmarks in PC gaming, and Nvidia’s GTX 980 Ti is set to target those who want both.

At R11,999 for an MSI or Gigabyte version of the card, gamers will ask themselves whether the price is worth the performance gains, though.

The GTX 980 Ti’s specifications are detailed in the table below.

Nvidia GeForce GTX 980 Ti
CUDA Cores 2816
Base Clock 1000MHz
Boost Clock 1075MHz
VRAM 6GB GDDR5
Memory Interface Width 384-bit
Maximum Digital Resolution 5120 x 3200
Maximum VGA Resolution 2048 x 1536
Multi-Monitor 4 displays
Power Requirement 250W
Minimum System Power 600W
Dimensions 115 x 266 x dual-width
Max GPU Temperature 92C

Performance

Nvidia’s promise of “new levels of performance and capabilities” was tested by hardware specialists Digital Foundry and Anandtech, which put the card through its paces at high resolutions.

The Digital Foundry tests were run in 4K, and used a gaming rig sporting an Intel Core i7-4790K (overclocked to 4.6GHz) and 16GB DDR3 1600MHz RAM.

The card’s frame rate performance is detailed in the table below.

Nvidia GeForce GTX 980 Ti – 4K (3840 x 2160)
GTX 980 Ti – FPS
GTX 980 Ti Overclocked – FPS
The Witcher 3, High, HairWorks Off, Custom AA 36.9 40.7
Battlefield 4, High, Post-AA 61.0 69.6
Crysis 3, High, SMAA 52.5 59.7
Assassin’s Creed Unity, Very High, FXAA 26.5 29.0
Far Cry 4, Very High, SMAA 47.1 50.9
COD Advanced Warfare, Console Settings, FXAA 86.9 96.9
Ryse: Son of Rome, Normal, SMAA 41.7 45.6
Shadow of Mordor, High, High Textures, FXAA 54.8 59.7
Tomb Raider, Ultra, FXAA 61.3 66.0

Anandtech also ran gaming tests in 4K, which are detailed in the table below.

The test rig used consisted of an Intel Core i7-4960X 4.2GHz, ASRock Fatal1ty X79 Professional motherboard, Samsung SSD 840 EVO, and 32GB G.Skill RipjawZ DDR3-1866 RAM.

Nvidia GeForce GTX 980 Ti – 4K (3840 x 2160) FPS
Battlefield 4 – Ultra Quality 56.5
Crysis 3 – High Quality + FXAA 40.9
Middle-earth: Shadow of Mordor – Ultra Quality 47.9
Civilization: Beyond Earth – Ultra Quality 70.5
Dragon Age: Inquisition – Ultra Quality 40.7
Far Cry 4 – Ultra Quality 40.6

South African pricing

At the time of writing, Rebel Tech and Evetech only had two version of the 980 Ti for sale – both R11,999. Wootware was offering the same cards at a slightly cheaper price, as shown below.

MSI GeForce GTX 980 Ti – R11,217 / R11,999

MSI GTX 980 Ti
MSI GTX 980 Ti

Gigabyte GeForce GTX 980 Ti – R11,704 / R11,999

Gigabyte GTX 980 Ti
Gigabyte GTX 980 Ti

The MSI Gaming 6G version

One version of the GTX 980 Ti which is yet to receive local pricing is the MSI Gaming 6G version of the card.

Besides the aesthetic improvements to the standard design of the Ti and clock frequency boosts, MSI has incorporated its Twin Frozr cooling to give gamers better heat management with less noise.

MSI GTX 980 Ti
MSI GTX 980 Ti
MSI GTX 980 Ti
MSI GTX 980 Ti
MSI GTX 980 Ti
MSI GTX 980 Ti

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Nvidia GeForce GTX 980 Ti – performance at a price