Nvidia may have some new spins on its current-gen graphics cards soon, going through conversations on the vine.
Specifically, the belief is that an RTX 3060 with 8GB of VRAM instead of 12GB is in the works for late October, with the card also reportedly having the memory bus reduced to 128-bit (instead of 192-bit). ).
This would appear alongside an RTX 3060 Ti that has the same amount of VRAM (it already had 8GB) but is equipped with faster GDDR6X memory (instead of plain GDDR6). Presumably this will be 19Gbps video RAM (as seen on the 3070 Ti), so this would lead to a bandwidth increase of just over a third.
This was a rumor previously circulated on Twitter by MegaSize GPU (opens in new tab)and now got more weight after VideoCardz (opens in new tab) talked to their sources and apparently got word from graphics card manufacturers that these new RTX 3060 models are indeed planned.
This is supposedly a push by Nvidia to expand its portfolio of midrange GPUs in the face of what is described as increasing competition.
Other Ampere variations could be planned as well, according to MegaSizeGPU, but this pair of RTX 3060 upgrades are the only models for which we have VideoCardz’s assurance that they’re happening. Another rumor suggests an RTX 3070 Ti with a GA102 GPU, which is the chip that powers the RTX 3090 and 3080 (the RTX 3070 Ti as it exists is GA104). If it does, however, it might be region-specific (like just Asia).
Analysis: Understanding the new models
The theorized version of the 8GB RTX 3060 would not only have a smaller amount of RAM, but also restricted bandwidth with that memory bus reduced to 128-bit, so gamers could expect performance to drop a bit. Likewise, we also expect prices to come down, and we could be looking at a new model that costs $300 in the US (about £260, AU$510), or maybe even less than that. This could be an attractive proposition for anyone looking to get a more affordable GPU.
It’s interesting to hear that this is apparently a response to growing competition, although Nvidia’s GPUs still seem to be the dominant force, at least looking at Newegg’s best-selling graphics card rankings now as a snapshot. Furthermore, Team Green’s GPU market share has also increased as per the latest numbers. That said, perhaps this is a reference to Intel’s entry into the market with its high-end Arc A7 graphics cards that should be released soon and will compete with the RTX 3060 and 3060 Ti, approximately. (Although clouds of doubt have been cast over Intel’s GPU prospects lately, at least on the vine).
In the big picture, it might seem strange to hear that Nvidia is rumored to be prepping these new RTX 3000 models, when overstocking current-gen graphics cards is a recognized issue. But as we’ve seen, the RTX 3060 is making good progress with sales – certainly following Steam’s hardware survey, where the GPU has been improving lately – so it makes sense for Nvidia to continue capitalizing on that momentum for now.
And really, the overstock issue seems to pertain to the RTX 3070 and higher graphics cards, which are the products that are seeing the big price reductions lately (supposedly with more to come). So what appears to be the case is that Nvidia is changing these GPUs ahead of debuting their successors, the RTX 4090, 4080 and 4070 – and the launch of these next-gen cards will be tiered with Ampere offerings, as Team Green has already told us .
All of this could mean, in short, that we see these high-end GPUs mixed with the new RTX 3060 models – and that tentatively points to the RTX 4060 likely to be a little off. We haven’t heard much about the RTX 4060 through rumor either, compared to the RTX 4070 and above, so again, this all lines up nicely (with all the usual caveats around speculation applied, of course).