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2 ASUS GeForce GTX 1080 8GB ROG STRIX *OC Edition* in SLI vs. The *NEW* 1080  Titan X

Posted on 2016-07-22
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Last Modified: 2016-07-23
I'd like to know the opinions from some experts on what my best option here is. Mind you, I'm looking to use these cards for gaming, specifically running a 4K resolution at a *solid* 60fps. I have two 2 ASUS GeForce GTX 1080 8GB ROG STRIX *OC Edition* cards currently on their way, and one of them was purchased by someone else as a gift. They cost $724 each with tax and shipping. The new Titan X was just announced yesterday, and retails for $1200. The specs do not seem to be worth the price tag however. Yes, it's sufficient for running 4k at a stable 60fps, but It looks like my 2 cards in SLI could potentially do the same. The specs of my two cards doubled seems to be considerably superior to the Titan(if it works that way). However, I have some concerns about the actual benefits of SLI from past experience. For one, in order to take advantage of SLI performance, games need to support it. Now, this may be more common than it was 5 years ago. If a game supports SLI, will it ultimately double the resources of a single card? (clock speed, ram etc.) Secondly, How many future AAA titles do you think will support SLI?

If you check the specs, the Titan X does not seem to double the performance of a single GTX1080. I believe I read something like a 20-24% increase. Enough to get 4k @ 60fps, but definitely not worth the $1200 price tag. If i didn't receive one of these cards as a gift, and couldn't sell them on ebay(potentially for a nice profit as they're sold out all over), I wouldn't even be considering it. However, if it's more likely to get me 4k @ 60fps with a majority of games, then I am willing to fork out the extra.

Your thoughts and opinions are appreciated. Thanks.
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Question by:Mark Di Padova
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by:Daniel Foye
Daniel Foye earned 250 total points
ID: 41725444
Based on your question, it seems to me that you are most concerned with all-out high-end gaming performance from your graphics card(s).  

The highest-performing single card that you can afford will give you the best SINGLE monitor performance at 4K.  

So, I think you would inevitably be happier with the single Titan over two 1080's.

No, the performance increase from two cards in SLI is NOT double that of a single card. Not even close.

The roughly 20 to 25% improvement in performance that the Titan gets over the 1080 will translate to nearly every situation, every game. Two cards in SLI will give better performance over a single card, in select situations, but not all the time.

You didn't mention what types of games you play.  I would suggest that, in addition to your input from here (EE), a site mainly geared toward workstation computing issues, you could also visit some high-end gaming forums to gather more information to make this crucial decision.  Either way you go,  you'll be gaming with some sweet gear. Good luck!
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by:Mark Di Padova
ID: 41725471
Mainly First Person Shooters. Thanks for the answer.
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☠ MASQ ☠ earned 250 total points
ID: 41725590
What a great gift!

At best you'll squeeze a much more stable 133% performance out of SLI.  The technology was always much more about combining the GPUs  but more importantly the VRAM to make things run more reliably rather than faster - remember when SLI and CrossFire arrived in the market this was a huge issue preventing game development evolving.

What will happen now with the Pascal GP102 is that PCI-E 16 3.0 bandwidth on motherboards will start to become the limiting factor, the massive increase in fast memory and CUDA cores will make the cards thirsty for data to process.

Not underestimating the technology here the only real increases are with the Pascal systems ability to handle massive bandwidth, an insane number of CUDA cores given current game development and DDR5 capacity.

The core clock and boost speeds on the new Titan X are actually slower than the GTX1080 and thermal design on the older card is better.

Comparing your SLI'd 1080s with the Titan the Titan will always win because of the better use of memory and the CUDA advantage but the games devs will have to play catch up to get these features to shine.

Titan X (the new one!)

Pros:  Shiniest, Top of the Range, huge VRAM and CUDA count, able to handle anything you thrown at it. Massive bragging rights :)

Cons:
Early adopter - it's cutting edge tech if it falls then those who bought in fall with it.
Price - nVidia want their development monies back and quick

GTX 1080 OC

Pros: Already in your hands - you only paid for one of them

Cons:  OK it's now the #2 in the league but even if you run one alone without SLI it is still outperforming all but one card in the marketplace.
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by:Mark Di Padova
ID: 41726012
Thanks guys!
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