Nvidia Pascal GP104 Chip Pictured!


At the rate things are going, Pascal may end up the most hyped graphics card release in recent memory. So far we’ve been treated to die shots of GP106, the low-end chip used in the Drive PX 2. The GP104, set to release a little over a month from now, has remained hidden from view, till today.

Coming out from Chinese forums, we can finally see what GP104 looks like. The SKU we have before us is the GP104-200, the one that is expected to bed used for the GTX 1070, the middle of the pack for GP104. The die size comes in at about 333 mm which is remarkably similar to the GM204. Around the die, we are able to see some Samsung 8Gbps 8Gb modules. This is what we have expected for the GTX 1070 and suitable for the GTX 1080 if it doesn’t use GDDRRX.

Overall, the leak today confirms what we already know about Nvidia’s plans. They will start off with the small GXx04 die as the “flagship” and follow it up with the bigger die later on. If the die size is correct, we maybe seeing a decently larger chip than the GM204 due to the die shrink. However, Pascal may bring back some of the compute cut out in Maxwell so it remains to be seen how the chip will truly perform.

Nvidia May Launch 3 Pascal GP104 SKUs at Computex

For those of you hoping for massive performance jump with the launch of Pascal, prepare to be disappointed. Every new generation tends to improve performance but some more than others. According to previous rumours, Nvidia is using their GP104 die to replace the GTX 980Ti with the GTX 1080 and 1070. Now, the latest reports are suggesting that Nvidia will launch 3 different Pascal SKUs, all based off of GP104, at Computex.

As the xx4 die, GP104 has traditionally been viewed as the smaller chip to the larger x10 or x00 dies that traditionally power flagships. Due to this, don’t expect Pascal to surpass the 980Ti by any large amount. Today’s news also furthers that impression. By splitting GP104 into 3 SKUs, we can expect performance between the 3 cards to be pretty close. It wouldn’t make sense to have so many close performing cards to the flagship which suggests that GP104 won’t be real flagship material.

By slipping GP104 into 3 SKUs, we will likely run into the same situation as the GTX 560Ti 448/570/580 and the 660Ti/670/680. If we take our past experience with those cards as the guideline, we can expect differentiation, not just on the core but the memory bandwidth as well. This makes the previous rumours about the GTX 1070 using GDDR5 while the GTX 1080 will use faster GDDR5X. The 1060Ti as I am calling it may feature either a gimped 192bit bus or the same situation faced by the GTX 970 with a section of VRAM being slower.

Right now, all we have to differentiate the 3 SKUs are the model numbers, the GTX 1080 will be GP104-400-A1, the GTX 1070 GP104-200-A1, and the 1060Ti will be using the GP104-150-A1. It will be interesting to see how Nvidia will differentiate the cards and how they compete against current Maxwell models. Computex can’t come soon enough!

Nvidia Pascal GP104 May Use GDDR5 and GDDR5X

With rumours pointing to a May/June launch at Computex, more information is coming about Nvidia’s upcoming GTX 1070 and 1080. At times taking on an x70 and x80 moniker, the two chips are slated to use the GP104 Pascal die and take up the role currently filled by the GTX 970 and 980. Today, another leak has come out detailing what the two cards will look like and it seems the GTX 1080 will have a lot more memory bandwidth than the GTX 1070.

According to the leak, both the GTX 1080 and GTX 1070 will be based on the GP104 die. This will slot into the Pascal lineup just like the GK104 and GM204. While previous cards have mostly differentiated in the core specifications, it looks like this time, memory bandwidth and a lot of it will be the difference. The GTX 1080 will reportedly use GDDR5X while the 1070 will use GDDR5. This should give potentially up to 100% more bandwidth for the GTX 1080 and better energy efficiency to boot. Due to the use of different memory, the 1080 will boast 20 more pins. The 1080 will use the GP104-400-A1 and the 1070 the GP104-200-A1.

For two similar cards based of off the same GP104, there seems little reason to split the memory between two different types since the required memory bandwidth should be similar. One possibility is that the GTX 1080 may be using relatively slower GDDR5X that isn’t much faster than the fastest GDDR5. This makes sense if GDDR5X is supply constrained for the top end models. Another possibility is that both were meant to get GDDR5X but supply meant only one of them could. Finally, it could also be a way to differentiate the GTX 1080 as it may remain the GeForce flagship for quite a while.

Last of all, we have also gotten information about the connectors, Both cards will feature 3x Displayport, 1 HDMI, and 1 DVI for display connectivity. Power will be provided by 2 x 8pin PCIe power connectors which is actually more than what the Titan X has. Given the efficiency from moving to 16nm, this points to either a monster chip or lots of dual precision hardware being left in. With only several weeks left, will be interesting to finally see what Nvidia has cooked up for us.