Introduction – NVIDIA RTX 3060 Ti
NVIDIA didn’t drum up this launch as much as its earlier releases with the other RTX 30 series cards. It could be due to anything and we can assume all we want, the important fact is that the card is real and is here and now. Thanks to the performance jump that NVIDIA offers, many are looking forward to the mid-tier cards in the RTX 30 series line-up and despite AMD’s strong outing, NVIDIA’s more robust software ecosystem has guaranteed that they’ll be able to secure much of the sub-$400 market who account for the largest segment in the gaming segment. As of this moment, the GTX 1060 and GTX 1050 Ti account for 20% of Steam’s installation base making it the most sizable segment by their own.
Today, NVIDIA officially launches the GeForce RTX 3060 Ti. Their first mid-tier card with a $399 price tag, the RTX 3060 Ti succeeds the RTX 2060 SUPER in the hierarchy and is promised to perform around the RTX 2080 SUPER which debuted at $699.
Everything has been said about the RTX 30 series cards and many of the things the RTX 3090, RTX 3080 and RTX 3070 but NVIDIA places heavy emphasis of their current tech in the reviewers’ guide: 3rd-gen AI Tensor cores, 2nd-gen RT core as well as their new supporting technologies like RTX IO, Reflex, DLSS and NVIDIA Broadcast.
In this review, we’ll see how the NVIDIA RTX 3060 Ti Founders Edition performs. Many of us in Asia will probably never see this card but as the benchmark of NVIDIA’s performance, it serves as the measuring stick of how the rest of the custom cards should perform. Read on!
|RTX 3060 Ti||RTX 2060 SUPER||RX 5700 XT||RTX 2080 Ti FE||RTX 3080 FE||RTX 3070 FE|
|Stream Processors/ CUDA Cores||4864||2176||2560||4352||8704||5888|
|Boost frequency||1665Mhz||1650Mhz||2010 Mhz||1635Mhz||1710 MHz||1725 MHz|
|Memory||8GB GDDR6||8GB GDDR6||8GB GDDR6||11GB GDDR6||10GB GDDR6X||8GB GDDR6|
Closer Look – NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3060 Ti Founders Edition
Power Draw, Clock Speed and Temperature – NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3060 Ti Founders Edition
We use Final Fantasy XV Benchmark to simulate a gaming workload but for those looking extreme loads, we do put our cards through 3DMark Time Spy on first installation for stress testing to check for stability. For our reviews though, we use Final Fantasy XV to simulate a true gaming scenario. Power draw is captured inline via PCAT or Powenetics so no other components affects readings. Readings are taken from the average 15 minutes for both load and idle.
Now let’s take a look at how the GPU clock behaves in relation to temperatures. As GPU Boost gives these cards massive overclocks already, cooler temps influence performance further. This chart shows us when the card behaves best based on our lab environment:
Test Setup and Methodology
Processor: Intel Core i9 10900K
Memory: G.Skill TridentZ DDR4-3600 32GB
Storage: Patriot Viper VP4100 1TB, Kingston KC2000 1TB
PSU: Seasonic Platinum 1050w
Cooling: Corsair H150i Pro 360mm AIO
Monitor: ROG PG27UQ 4K 144hz HDR1000
Graphics Card: Listed
For a full-hardware workout, visit https://benchmarks.ul.com for our system warm-up and stress test of choice.
For benchmarking methodology please see our game benchmark method guide.
Test results are gathered and produced on CapFrameX. This makes it easier for use to get both line graph comparison and raw averages without extra tools. Simply the easiest tool for benchmarking and its available for everyone to use, free of charge. Check it out at capframex.com.
Since this is a GPU review, we benchmarked the area of the games that put heavy load on the GPU.
All our test runs are repeatable, click the links below for area and details. Read our benchmarking methodology.
- DOTA2 – Kiev Major Grand Finals Game 5: OG vs Virtus.Pro (54:05 – 55:05)
- Counter-Strike: Global Offensive: FPS Benchmark Workshop Map
- The Witcher 3 – Woesong Bridge
- Grand Theft Auto V – Palomino Highlands
- Rainbow Six: Siege – Benchmark Mode
- Shadow of the Tomb Raider – Kuwaq Yaqu
- Call of Duty Modern Warfare 2019 – Fog of War
- Monster Hunter World: Iceborne – Wildspire Waste
- F1 2020 – Benchmark Mode (Australia, Day, Clear)
- Apex Legends – Firing Range
- Valorant – Custom Game
- Destiny 2 – The Tower
All of our benchmarks are demonstrated to our audience thru livestream for verification purposes and insights from our readers/audience. Livestream are done on Back2Gaming’s Facebook page. You can also see some of our benchmark scenes in our Youtube playlist for benchmark sequences.
Our selection of games are decided by technology, genre and overall popularity. For example, we picked DOTA2 versus League of Legends because of the graphical intensity that DOTA2 places on the system versus League and Heroes of the Storm. CSGO and Rainbow Six Siege were re-added in 2020 due to their immense popularity, much like GTA V and Monster Hunter World which has not faded in popularity or has seen slow decline but is still played by a large playerbase. Games like Witcher 3 and Shadow of the Tomb Raider are great technological examples. F1 2020 is a genre example.
Apex Legends and Valorant will be making their debut in our tests starting with this review. I’ve put more than 200 hours of gameplay to verify that test scenes used are reliable enough to simulate real world situations.
Note: Some proprietary technologies of NVIDIA like PCSS, HBAO+, and HairWorks work on AMD GPU’s BUT to maintain uniformity amongst GPUs, these have been turned OFF. NVIDIA Reflex is also disabled when present.
You can click on any of the benchmark charts enlarge. You can also move forward and backwards to quickly navigate through our charts via gallery view. For this test, only the out-of-box normal mode will be tested.
Counter-Strike: Global Offensive (CSGO)
Counter-Strike: Global Offensive, popularly known as CSGO, competes for Steam’s most popular game. It has found a resurgence in its popularity and has recently peaked in 2020 in the number of players that play the game. Based on Valve’s Source Engine, the game received major asset overhauls during the years since its inception nearly 10 years ago. Still, it’s a light game and can be played on fairly lighter systems but the competitive scene for CSGO has seen average players demand high FPS from their systems thus gaining favorable standing with GPU vendors just from the demand for higher FPS alone. CSGO is a game that can easily go past 500FPS on enthusiast systems on maximum settings. We’re including CSGO as requested by our community.
API: DirectX9 (default)
Maximum In-Game Settings
Texture Streaming Disabled
Note: JUNE 2020 – DOTA2 has recently implemented a transition from DirectX9 to DirectX11 and new install of the game will prompt users to switch from DX9 to DX11. With that said, we are testing DOTA2 in DX11 from now on.
In contention for the most popular game on Steam and the biggest competition in eSports: DOTA 2 is powered by the Source 2 engine. The game is fairly light on low to medium settings but maxed out, with heavy action on screen especially during clashes, can really stress most systems. This is a game where frame times matter as responsiveness is very important in high-stakes competition. We’re looking at consistently low frametimes in this game for the best experience
Our test uses actual game replay, using the segment from game 5 of the Kiev Major 2017 Grand Finals between OG and VP. The clash during the 54:05 to 55:05 of the game is a nice example of how much a system will get punished during intense team fights in DOTA2.
You can watch the replay of the actual game used in the benchmark here in Youtube or download the replay file here for your DOTA2 client: Game 3149572447. (save it to your DOTA2 replays folder)
API: DirectX11 (default)
Best-Looking slider setting (Ultra)
The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt
CD Projekt Red’s latest installment in the Witcher saga features one of the most graphically intense offering the company has to date. As Geralt of Rivia, slay monsters, beasts and men a
s you unravel the mysteries of your past. Vast worlds and lush sceneries make this game a visual feast and promises to make any system crawl at its highest settings. This game has found great resurgence in its playerbase thanks to the release of Netflix’ Witcher series.
API: DirectX 11
Frame Rate: Unlimited
Nvidia HairWorks: Off
Motion Blur: Off
Ambient Occlusion: SSAO
Depth of Field: On
Chromatic Aberration: Off
Light Shafts: On
Grand Theft Auto V
The fifth and most successful installment to date in the highly controversial Grand Theft Auto series brings a graphical overhaul to the PC version of GTA V which many have lauded as a superior approach in porting a console game to PC. Featuring large areas and detailing, GTA V is a highly challenging application in terms of scene complexity.
Our benchmark uses a run from Palomina Highlands running through a lush area to a remote road all the way to a neighborhood in our car to simulate multiple scene changes.
API: DirectX 11
Very High settings
Anisotropic Filtering: 16x
Motion Blur disabled
Advanced Graphics enabled
Shadow of the Tomb Raider
Shadow of the Tomb Raider is the latest installment in the reboot run of the classic Tomb Raider franchise. The game follows the story set forth by the previous game which Shadow of the Tomb Raider short follows after. Technology-wise, the game uses the Foundation engine updated to meet the demand of developer Eidos Montreal to push the engine to its limits. The game supports DirectX 12 and is one of the launch titles to support RTX technology namely DLSS which launched a couple of months post-launch.
API: DirectX 12
Graphics Settings Preset: Highest
Texture Quality: Ultra
Texture Filtering: 8x Anisotropic
Raytraced Shadow: OFF
Call of Duty Modern Warfare (2019)
Call of Duty Modern Warfare is a reboot of the original Call of Duty 4: Modern Warfare storyline, set in a different world where you, along with Captain Price have to stop the world from going to war. Call of Duty Modern Warfare reignites the franchise by introducing full crossplay support where Xbox and PS4 players can play together with PC players. On PC, the game features a new engine pushing photorealism for COD far beyond what their older engine is capable of. The new engine also introduces raytracing and the AI is designed to perceive light as well. With a revitalized multiplayer arena, the game will require fast frame rates.
API: DirectX 12
Render Resolution: 100%
Texture Resolution: High
Texture Filter Anisotropic: High
Particle Quality: High
Shadow Map Resolution: Extra
Particle Lighting: Ultra
DirectX Raytracing: OFF
Ambient Occlusion: Both
Anti-Aliasing: Filmic SMAA T2X
World Motion Blur: Off
Shaders Installed before benchmarks*
Monster Hunter World: Iceborne
Easily Capcom’s most successful game to date. Available in both consoles and PC, Monster Hunter World ranks in Steam’s top played games for the platform. The 2020 Iceborne update for PC brings the game to new PC frontier, introducing DirectX 12 support. The game features rich graphical detail settings and an Ultra HD texture pack for highend gamers. MHW’s features fast-paced action with traditional RPG farings and has captured a new market thanks to the transition from portable.
Our benchmark for this game uses an expedition track in the Wildspire Waste Southwest Camp (Area 1) and finishes in the Rathian nest at Area 12 in the caves. This run gives us runs from barren area, to watery area with lush vegetation to a cave which replicates the varied nature of exploration and monster combat in MHW.
API: DirectX 12
Graphical Settings: Manual (customized from High)
All variable settings set to High
Image Quality: High
Max LOD Level: No Limit
Volume Rendering Quality: High
Motion Blur: Off
DLSS and AMD FidelityFX: OFF
The latest iteration of the F1 series from CodeMasters features support for DirectX 12 as well as more photorealistic graphics than ever. Now heavily featured in the official F1 esports scene, much attention has been given in the development of this game particularly for added realism.
API: DirectX 12
Settings: Ultra High
PlayerUnknown’s Battleground (PUBG)
Developed by South Korean company Bluehole, PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds was an ARMA3 mod which has gained a massive global playerbase after being released as a stand-alone game. The game is now available for almost all platforms from PC to mobile but PC has been the definitive edition of the game. The game has evolved much since its release, receiving multiple polish to arrive at its current state.
API: DirectX 11
The battle royale genre sees multiple titles emerge and Respawn Entertainment’s most successful title to date, Apex Legends differentiates itself from main rival PUBG as it presents itself in true, fast-paced FPS. Existing in the same universe as Titanfall, Apex Legends sees contenders in traditional battle royale elimination format but gameplay heavily gears towards more familiar FPS mechanics. As a Respawn Ent. game, its closer to COD versus PUBG’s more sluggish and heavier gameplay.
API: DirectX 11
Texture Streaming Budget: 6GB VRAM
FSP Cap Disabled
Destiny 2: New Light is an MMOFPS which sees a persistently sizable playerbase. The game features traditional MMO elements but played in an FPS approach which allows a more skill-dependent game versus traditional MMORPG formats. The game features a futuristic sci-fi universe with lush and detailed in-game locations that puts respectable workload on a gaming system.
API: DirectX 11
Developed by League of Legends developer, Riot Games, Valorant is a first-person shooter featuring multiple heroes or agents which have unique skills to assist them within the games traditional team-based FPS combat. The game is gaining incredible success and has taken a large chunk of the now-incredibly massive CSGO playerbase as well, presenting a more refreshed take on classic TDM FPS but spices it up with skills, etc. Like CSGO and League, this game is light as a feather for the largest adoption possible. With 360hz monitors and input lag/system latency a major focus for these games, we’re now including it as reference for players.
API: DirectX 11
Settings: Max in-game details
Anti-Aliasing: MSAA x4 (highest in-game)
NVIDIA Reflex: Off
Much like its bigger brothers, the RTX 3060 Ti will be available thru MicroCenter and Best Buy in the US and BestBuy.com in Canada. While that may be sad for people in other regions, we’ve seen folks in Asia managing to get their hands on these cards regardless. Focusing on performance, the NVIDIA RTX 3060 Ti Founders Edition jumps way ahead of its RTX 2060 Super predecessor, offering performance rivaling if not surpassing the RTX 2080 Super. At $399, this sees the xx60 class now elevated to its highest pricing to date but with no non-Ti variant insight, this remains to be seen where NVIDIA will be taking mainstream pricing as of this card’s release.
We also have the ZOTAC RTX 3060 Ti Twin Edge OC and ASUS TUF Gaming RTX 3060 Ti OC for this launch.
Many gamers now are looking at 1440p 144hz or higher as their main gaming resolution, moving away from 1080p. With the exception of some FPS esports players, 1080p144 should be the minimum gaming experience with modern 360Hz monitors pushing the resolution further in terms of responsiveness. We’ve particularly put a heavy esports focus on our benchmarks as a large proportion of our audience play these games and with graphics cards serving as a long-term investment for many mid-tier builds, I felt it was largely important starting with the RTX 3060 Ti. Given the new pricing segmentation the PC industry is following, the nudging the $300 buyers to push further will require further convincing.
That said, the NVIDIA RTX 3060 Ti is a performance success for me but I feel we need to see what NVIDIA does with an RTX 3060 and RTX 3050 before we can probably come up with a proper conclusion in terms of its price: performance offer. Still, we see >90FPS at 1080p in AAA titles and esports games maintaining at least 120FPS at this resolution. Of course dialing back settings will greatly improve performance, especially for higher resolutions.
Focusing the NVIDIA RTX 3060 Ti Founders Edition, I’m not gonna criticize it due to its regional limitation but I will point out that NVIDIA needs to address the demand for these cards, the RTX 3060 Ti Founders Edition card themselves as well as most other FEs in the stack. The GPUs themselves are another issue altogether but as we see supplies increasing day-to-day, which is nice to see.
NVIDIA clearly has something good with their new Founders Edition cooler for it to have much of the success it has today. That success continues with the NVIDIA RTX 3060 Ti Founders Edition. Sharing a same-style cooler as the RTX 3070 which performs great, this in turn provides good cooling to the RTX 3060 Ti Founders Edition as well. Much of the appeal of this card boils down to looks, pricing, performance offering and software ecosystem.
NVIDIA has had a headstart against AMD in terms of planting the seeds for a software ecosystem and with many streamers now heavily reliant on NVIDIA NVENC encoding, NVIDIA Broadcast and GeForce Experience, many of NVIDIA’s proprietary technology will soon see them growing roots like RTX IO and Reflex. The big difference maker here is DLSS. Like it or hate it, it works and works enough to the point it helps in furthering adoption of raytracing particularly in AAA titles. This entire ecosystem of tools and software features has made streamers and content creators gravitate towards NVIDIA and its going to be tough removing this group on the significant population of users dependent on these features.
All in all, the NVIDIA RTX 3060 Ti Founders Edition is good card and its good cooling and smaller form makes it ideal for even smaller builds. Notice that I don’t use the word great when referring to the cooling. Reason is I feel they could’ve adapted shrunk this card further by pursuing a single fan version. Regardless, the new Ampere GPUs are easy to cool despite what most cards will tell you given their more sizable coolers. The Founders Edition is still a highly coveted card and NVIDIA has made it a point to make a statement this generation. The previous Founders Edition all the way back to the GTX 500 series were horrendously subpar but this new-gen blowthrough cooler marks the most custom card NVIDIA has ever made on its own and could effectively provide the best cooling all the way down to an RTX 3050, if NVIDIA decides for it to exist. For now, the RTX 3060 Ti is one Ti card down the list, filling in the $100 gap to the RTX 3070.[one_half] [tie_list type=”plus”]
- Excellent performance jump from RTX 2060 Super
- RTX 2080 Super performance for $399
- Great build quality
- 2-slot design
- Blowthrough cooler
- Availability is US/Canada only
- Stiff micro-fit cable
- Priced too close to RTX 3070
Leave a Reply