So we may be past most of the exciting launches that sit at the top of the price range but both Nvidia and AMD have been slowly releasing all of their price point cards. Most recently AMD launched the RX 460. At that spot in the market, Nvidia hadn’t responded until today. Today they are announcing the GTX 1050 and the GTX 1050 Ti. Well really most of you saw all of the PR launch last week, but today is the official end of the NDAs. That means I can finally dive into the cards and see what Nvidia has going on. While I’m doing that I’m going to add a new game into our benchmark suite and retest the RX 460 to see how they compare. Then we can find out what cards will be the best performers for those of you who don’t have PCI power connections or for those looking to keep the budget way down on their latest build. To keep things really easy, Nvidia sent over MSI cards for both the 1050 and the 1050 Ti so they should be perfect for comparing the two.
Review Samples Provided by: Nvidia
Written by: Wes
Pictures by: Wes
GTX 1050 and 1050 Ti
At this point, most of you have a good idea of where the rest of Nvidia and AMDs product lineups stand but to help everyone here is a quick breakdown. Currently, the GTX 1080 sits at the top of the pack with performance for some 4k gaming and high refresh rate 1440p gaming. The GTX 1070 is for 1440p gaming and 1080p high refresh rate gaming and the GTX 1060 came in as the idea 1080p gaming card. AMD has the RX 480 for VR and 1080p gaming as well as some 1440p gaming as well. The RX 470 drops some VR performance but is still good at 1080p. The AMD RX 460 was brought out as what they called an e-sports card. Basically, it is perfect for most of today's popular e-sport titles like Overwatch, LoL, CS:GO, and Dota 2. Well, Nvidia is finally filling in that same gap but with two cards, the GTX 1050 and GTX 1050 Ti, both focused on that same e-sports gaming market or the everyday gamer.
The idea is to have a card that doesn’t require PCI power connections and can just drop into most OEM PCs with just a small investment, giving a huge improvement to gamers running onboard graphics or 3+ year old budget cards that are beyond long in the tooth. They compared the cards in their briefing with past cards like the GTX 650 and GTX 750 and in the case of the 650 they are suggesting people will see 3x the performance in those games. Not bad for about what some people spend in cosmetics each month in some of the games.
|GTX 1050||GTX 1050 Ti|
|Price as tested||$109||$139|
|Graphics Processing Clusters||2||2|
|CUDA Cores (single precision)||640||768|
|Base Clock||1354 MHz||1290 MHz|
|Boost Clock||1455 MHz||1392 MHz|
|Memory Clock||3504 MHz||3504 MHz|
|Memory Data Rate||7 Gbps||7 Gbps|
|L2 Cache Size||1024K||1024K|
|Total Video Memory||2048 MB GDDR5||4096 MB GDDR5|
|Total Memory Bandwidth||112 GB/s||112 GB/s|
|Texture Rate (Bilinear)||54.2 GigaTexels/sec||61.9 GigaTexels/sec|
|Fabrication Process||14 nm||14 nm|
|Transistor Count||3.3 Billion||3.3 Billion|
1 x DisplayPort
1 x HDMI
1 x Dual-Link DVI
1 x DisplayPort
1 x HDMI
1 x Dual-Link DVI
|Form Factor||Dual Slot||Dual Slot|
|Recommended Power Supply||300 Watts||300 Watts|
|Thermal Design Power (TDP)||75 Watts||75 Watts|
|Thermal Threshold||97° C||97° C|
I was really excited to see that Nvidia didn’t just refresh and rebrand an older card to move down into the new 1050 slot like we sometimes see. They actually went with Pascal based GPUs in both models. Specifically, both are running a GP107 Pascal GPU where the GTX 1080 and GTX 1070 run the GP104 and the GTX 1060 has the GP106. That means the cards do get the same features that were introduced on the GTX 1080 like the refined memory efficiency and Simultaneous Multi-Projection technology. The GP107 is heavily cut down though to help it come in at a proper price point. The GTX 1050 comes in at $109 and the GTX 1050 Ti $139. For comparison the RX 460 from Gigabyte that I tested for the RX 460 launch sold for $119.99 with a base MSRP of $109. AMD did, however, drop prices ahead of today's launch $10 for the RX 460 and RX 470. This puts the GTX 1050 almost right at that same price point, it will be interesting to see how they compare in performance.
Speaking of how do they compare, how do the GTX 1050 and GTX 1050 Ti compare to each other. Well like I said they both have the same GP107 based GPU but the GTX 1050 has been cut down a little from the 48 texture cores of the Ti to 40. That translates to 128 less CUDA cores as well. They both have the same memory clock speed and the same 128-bit memory interface. The GTX 1050, however, does have something interesting going on, it has a higher clock speed than the GTX 1050 Ti with a base clock of 1354 MHz vs 1290 MHz. The Non-Ti model is available in both 2 and 4 GB models but Nvidia sent us the 2GB model to best match with the 2GB RX 460 that we have to test against.
As always I also have GPUz screenshots for both of our test cards. This way we can make sure there aren’t any discrepancy’s in things like clock speeds. It also gives you guys a chance to check out the specific driver I tested on and also compare firmware revision differences. You will notice that both cards have a higher GPU clock than listed above, this is because they are both overclocked cards from MSI so they aren’t a perfect representation of a stock card, but we all know there won’t be any stock clocked cards for sale without any founders edition or reference cards on the market, so they are a perfect look at what should be on the market. Speaking of that, the GTX 1050 Ti should be available today but our documentation is saying availability on November 8th for the GTX 1050.
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