A more detailed look at the Ampere GeForce architecture has been provided by NVIDIA. The company released block diagrams, technology descriptions, and detailed specifications of the next-generation GeForce graphics cards.
NVIDIA details Ampere architecture
NVIDIA has confirmed the expected performance figures for its new RTX Ampere models. These are official figures based on NVIDIA in-house testing, likely to be taken with a grain of salt. However, the slides do show what the company expects from the upcoming GeForce 30 stack and where should it settle in the comparison charts.
NVIDIA also revealed detailed specs of the Ampere GPUs. The GPUs build using the Samsung 8nm node have a transistor destiny of 44.6MT/mm2 (GA102) compared to 24.7 MT/mm2 for Turing (TU102). The biggest Ampere RTX GPU – GA102 has 28 billion transistors and a die size of 628.4 mm2. This GPU will be used for GeForce RTX 3090 and RTX 3080. The flagship model features 82 Streaming Multiprocessors with 328 Tensor cores and 82 RT cores (ray tracing cores). It also has a 384-bit memory bus and 6MB of L2 cache.
A smaller Ampere GPU, GA104, features 17.4 billion transistors and a die size of 392 mm2. The RTX 3070 graphics card has 46 SMs enabled and thus the number of Tensors is 184 and RT cores is 46. This GPU has a memory bus of 256-bit and 4MB of L2 cache.
|NVIDIA GeForce RTX 30 Series Specifications|
|VideoCardz.com||RTX 3090||RTX 3080||RTX 3070||RTX 2080 Ti|
|Board||PG132 SKU 30||PG132 SKU 10||PG142 SKU 10||PG150 SKU 32|
|GPU||8nm GA102-300||8nm GA102-200||8nm GA104-300||12nm TU102-300|
328 (4 per SM)
272 (4 per SM)
184 (4 per SM)
544 (8 per SM)
NVIDIA GeForce RTX 30 series introduces Second Generation RT cores, further improving ray tracing acceleration. NVIDIA RT cores have pure hardware-based bounding volume hierarchy (BVH) which greatly improves performance over traditional and minimalistic approach with SIMD stream processors.
The second-generation Ampere RT core adds a triangle interpolation component along a time-scale, in coordination with the triangle intersection unit to the RT core architecture. According to NVIDIA, this should be useful during motion blur effects in real-time ray tracing.
A third-generation Tensor core largely copies the design from (formerly known as Tesla) A100 Accelerator. This core will boost the performance during DLSS AI-super resolution upscaling in gaming.
Ampere’s tensors are designed to leverage sparsity in deep learning neural nets. This is a process of reducing the matrixes without affecting its accuracy. This process can improve AI performance by an order of magnitude.
NVIDIA GA102 PCB
NVIDIA released a first official picture of the GA102-based Founders Edition graphics card featuring a PCI-Express 4.0 connector. This particular board design is for the GeForce RTX 3080. Unlike the RTX 3090, this board design has two memory modules missing and it lacks the NVLink connector (which is exclusive to RTX 3090 models). A total of 12 GDDR6X modules can be mounted on this board, but the RTX 3080 only has 10.
The PCB features 20-phase VRM which are put on both sides of the GPU. The DrMOS and tantalum capacitors were mostly put on the rear of the board.
The RTX 30 series biggest innovation is the new Molex Microfit 12-pin power connector, capable of delivering up to 300W of power. NVIDIA will not restrict Intel or AMD from using this connector, so there is a change that we see an adoption of the new standard pretty soon.
HDMI 2.1 and 8k GAMING
The RTX 3090 is the first graphics card advertised by NVIDIA for 8K gaming. This is possible thanks to the NVIDIA’s DLSS2 technology, which artificially upscales the resolution to 8k using 3rd Gen Tensor cores.
The 8K resolution has 16x more pixels than FullHD. This resolution has not really seen its prime popularity yet, as the availability of proper displays is still very limited. However, the addition of the HDMI 2.1 connector to the RTX 30 series (and also upcoming Xbox Series X and Playstation 5) are a good starting point for technology adoption in the near future.