Ray tracing technology is pretty impressive and I do give credit to nVidia for trying to push this technology. I think it does have a lot of potential to make gaming and 3D graphics in general much more immersive. However this series and the event was kind of a mess.
The launch event was very tightly focused on ray tracing performance rather than general gaming performance. Nor did nVidia go particularly detailed in the specs of these cards at the event proper rather posting them on their site. They also obscured a lot of the numbers or cherry picked data points. Such as the famous “2070 is 6X faster than a Titan X” headline I keep seeing everywhere.
Seems to me that these cards won’t be that much faster in non ray traced titles. IE the vast majority of them. Prob about a 15% increase across the board with higher power consumption. That isn’t particularly impressive especially for the cost they are charging for these things. The prices are insane. The partner cards won’t be much cheaper either. The new fan design and better VRM has taken a lot away from the partners and what they usually do. They will be forced to go higher end and compete that way. Leaked details from Gigabyte and others point to the same or even higher prices than the nVidia reference cards. Quite worrying. (Though apparently it is okay because these aren’t meant for gamers they are actually professional cards made for small businesses and self employed 3D modelers so the pricing is great for them and gamers just need to suck it up and deal with it because we don’t matter)
Also what we know about TSMC’s 7nm roadmap as well as the fact they are launching the Ti class now rather than waiting points to the idea that the 20XX series will be very short lived. It is highly likely that significantly faster 7nm based GPUs will be available early to the middle of next year making these cards irrelevant very quickly. Seems to be nVidia milking people now and then even further when the 7nm stuff drops.
It also raises the question of the mid range. With all this extra stuff on there these are big GPUs. To get lower prices we need smaller dies and that coupled with some leaks which show the 60 series and below being still GTX cards points to a huge bifurcation of nVidia’s line up with some having ray tracing tech and the others not. This could be seriously damaging to the GeForce and GTX brand or at least confusing to the average consumer. It also makes me question how much actual adoption we will see. Yes it is baked into DirectX and Vulkan now but if AMD cards and half of nVidia’s line up don’t support it particularly well why even bother?
So to sum up basically still a lot of unknowns.
What is the role of the AIB partners this generation and how will they price their cards and what features will they add?
What is the roll of SLI and NVLink as they seemingly have a bit more of a focus this time around?
What games and applications will leverage these extra features?
How will the community react to the price, segmentation and large change to the Geforce/GTX brand?
What is the actual performance and power consumption in non RT focused titles?
How will nVidia move forward from here?
Will be watching this cycle with interest.