NVIDIA today announced that its latest generation RTX 30-series graphics cards are coming to laptops. Customers will be able to pick from the RTX 3060, RTX 3070, or the RTX 3080 based graphics models, which will start at $999, $1299, and $1999, respectively.
Like the desktop models, the RTX 30-series graphics cards on the laptops are based on NVIDIA’s Ampere architecture and feature second-generation RT cores for real-time ray tracing and third-generation Tensor Cores for artificial intelligence and machine learning. It will also include support for features such as NVIDIA DLSS, NVIDIA Reflex, and NVIDIA Broadcast.
The RTX 30-series laptops will also feature third generation Max-Q tech. This will include features such as Dynamic Boost 2.0, which balances power between the CPU, GPU, and GPU memory based load on a per frame basis using AI. It will also include WhisperMode 2.0, which lets users set their desired noise level for the cooling system and the AI-powered algorithm will then manage CPU, GPU, system temperatures, and fan speed to keep it within that limit.
NVIDIA is also adding resizable BAR support, which allows the CPU to access the entire GPU memory at once, which can improve performance, especially at higher frame rates.
The RTX 30-series graphics will available from all major laptop OEMs starting January 26.
NVIDIA also launched the desktop version of the RTX 3060. At $329, the RTX 3060 is now the most affordable option in the RTX 30-series lineup below the $399 RTX 3060 Ti.
The RTX 3060 is based on the new GA106 GPU and features 3584 CUDA cores. It has a base clock speed of 1.32GHz and boost clock speed of 1.78GHz. It includes the 2nd generation RT cores, 3rd generation Tensor cores as well as support for features such as NVIDIA DLSS, DirectX 12 Ultimate, PCIe Gen 4, HDMI 2.1, AV1 decode, and Direct Storage. It will also support the aforementioned resizable BAR feature, which is also coming to other 30-series cards.
One odd thing about the RTX 3060 is that it features 12GB of GDDR6 memory on a 192-bit memory interface. That’s more memory than the 3060 Ti, 3070, and the 3080. Why NVIDIA felt its cheapest model needed the second most amount of memory after the most expensive one isn’t clear.
NVIDIA claims the RTX 3060 is twice as fast as the four and half year old GTX 1060, which is currently the most popular graphics card according to the Steam hardware survey. NVIDIA doesn’t say how much faster the 3060 is than the two year old RTX 2060 but the graph above suggests the difference isn’t as significant. The gap would be even less if you compared it with the RTX 2060 Super, which NVIDIA here has pretended like it doesn’t exist.
The RTX 3060 is priced at $329 and will be available only as a custom card from OEMs, including ASUS, Colorful, EVGA, Gainward, Galaxy, Gigabyte, Innovision 3D, MSI, Palit, PNY and Zotac in stock and over-clocked versions.