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Nvidia GTX 1080 Founders Edition Graphics Card Review

Rating: 9.0.

Based on the latest Pascal architecture, Nvidia claim the GTX 1080 is the most advanced graphics card ever made. The GTX 1080 is built on a new 16nm FinFET manufacturing process allowing the chip to incorporate more transistors – subsequently allowing for higher clock speeds and improved power efficiency.

The GTX 1080 also adopts GDDR5X memory which enhances bandwidth significantly over previous GDDR5 designs. Is Nvidia's GTX 1080 the new GPU king?


The GTX 1080 ‘Founders Edition' is crafted by Nvidia engineers and is built around a die cast aluminium body with low profile backplate. This is all machine finished and heat treated for strength.

Interestingly I have read some negative comments from KitGuru readers in the last week saying they prefer the appearance of the older Nvidia reference cooler, but I must say, I quite like the angular shapes and patterns in the design.

GPU GeForce
GTX 980 Ti
GTX Titan X
GTX 1080
Streaming Multiprocessors 8 13 16 22 24 20
CUDA Cores 1024 1664 2048 2816 3072 2560
Base Clock 1126 mhz 1050 mhz 1126 mhz 1000 mhz 1000 mhz 1607 mhz
GPU Boost Clock 1178 mhz 1178 mhz 1216 mhz 1075 mhz 1076 mhz 1733 mhz
Total Video memory 2GB 4GB 4GB 6GB 12GB 8GB
Texture Units 64 104 128 176 192 160
Texture fill-rate 72.1 Gigatexels/Sec 109.2 Gigatexels/Sec 144.1 Gigatexels/Sec 176 Gigatexels/Sec 192 Gigatexels/Sec 257.1 Gigatexels/Sec
Memory Clock 7010 mhz 7000 mhz 7000 mhz 7000 mhz 7000 mhz 5005mhz
Memory Bandwidth 112.16 GB/sec 224 GB/s 224 GB/sec 336.5 GB/sec 336.5 GB/sec 320 GB/s
Bus Width 128bit 256bit 256bit 384bit 384bit 256bit
ROPs 32 56 64 96 96 64
Manufacturing Process 28nm 28nm 28nm 28nm 28nm 16nm
TDP 120 watts 145 watts 165 watts 250 watts 250 watts 180 watts

The Nvidia GTX1080 ships with 2560 CUDA cores and 20 SM units. The 8GB of GDDR5X memory is connected via a 256 bit memory interface. This new G5X memory offers a huge step up in bandwidth, when compared against the older GDDR5 standard. It runs at a data rate of 10Gbps, giving 43% more bandwidth than the GTX980 GPU.

Architectural improvements in memory compression give an effective memory bandwidth increase of 1.7x when compared against the previous Nvidia flagship. There is a lot more to this performance than the figures above, so I recommend our readers spend a little time reading Page 2 of this review today where I try and break the technology advancements down as simply as possible.


For the last 10 days or so I have been retesting many graphics cards with the latest AMD and Nvidia drivers. We list all the partnering hardware on the testing methodology page of the review. First let's have a quick look at the new Nvidia technology.

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