Tech manufacturer Nvidia shook the world of computing when releasing the GeForce GTX 1080 graphics card back in 2016. GeForce GTX 1080 came with a 30 percent improvement in performance over its previous generation and promised a 28 percent reduction in power consumption. These improvements are quite staggering, but these new graphics cards came in at a premium price. However, not every gamer needs the over-the-top performance that the GTX 1080 brings, and that’s where Nvidia’s GTX 1070 comes into play. It is a cheaper alternative to the 1080 but still promises to push up a considerable amount of power for excellent performance at almost half the price. Read on for comparisons between the GTX 1070 and the GTX 1080.
Related: Check out our Best GTX 1080 review
GTX 1070 and 1080’s GPU use an architecture known as Pascal. This type of architecture boosts the individual stream processors and switches to a manufacturing process known as 16nm FinFET. The manufacturing process is a significant improvement over the previous generation of graphics cards that worked with 28nm. Transistors in this process use multiple gates and several fins instead of being on a single plane to facilitate more hardware in the GPU, allowing you to do more work.
The latest manufacturing process on both the GTX 1080 and 1070 is more efficient than the one in the previous GTX 980 and 970, allowing Nvidia to set a standard in the graphics card market. Nvidia’s newer generation graphics cards have a total of 7.2 billion transistors on a 314mm-squared die (GP104 core), whereas the previous ones had 5.2 billion transistors on a 398mm-squared die. In this regard, the GTX 1070 and 1080 can do loads of more work with a lot less real estate than the 970 and 980. The difference between the latest graphics cards is that the 1080 has a total of 20 streaming multiprocessors on 2560 CUDA cores. Clock speeds have an average boost of 1733MHz, with a GRRX5X RAM and 10gbs data rate. The 1070 is a slight downgrade with 15 streaming multiprocessors, 1920 CUDA cores and a clock speed boost averaging at 1683MHz.
The Pascal architecture not only tops older graphics cards in different benchmarks but also comes with several new features on the GP104 core. Since both the GTX 1080 and 1070 have the same core, you will get access to all these new features. One of the most interesting new things on these cards is on Nvidia’s upgraded version of the Polymorph Engine. It comes with a new feature known as Simultaneous Multi-Projection that brings new changes to usage in VR and stereo 3D rendering by reducing workload for increased efficiency.
Also, on both the 1080 and 1070, the media codecs are an upgrade from previous generations since they now support 10-bit and 12-bit encode besides 10-bit encode. GPU Boost is also available with the ability to scan card temperature and voltage to determine how far you can push the clock. Another feature is Asynchronous Computing, which is responsible for the interaction between the CPU and the GPU. It allows the GTX 1080 and 1070 cards to relieve the CPU of some work if spare stream processors are available. The GPU can also do the same by delegating some work to the CPU.
The GTX 1080 puts up quite an impressive performance on various benchmarks and game tests. This information strengthens the validity of Nvidia’s claims of 30 percent improvement in performance. For instance, in Tom Clancy’s The Division, the GTX 1080 records 107 fps, which is a lot more than the 85-fps seen under the GTX 980. This card also impresses on 1440p and 1080p tests besides doing justice to 4K games too. If you are a conventional gamer, these descriptions mean that the GTX 1080 and 1070 will suffice for your usual gaming. Also, it means that both cards can support VR headsets, multi-monitor, and widescreen monitor setups without any hitches.
Power and Heat
The GTX 1080 and 1070 bring down the power demands by a significant amount when compared to previous graphics card generations. Each of them only needs one eight-pin power connector. Both cards have a lower TDP compared to earlier generations, though the GTX 1080 has a higher TDP (180W) than the 1070 (150W). The higher figure means that the 1080 is a little less efficient than the 1070 and the latter would be friendlier to your electricity bill. However, this difference shouldn’t be a big deal because both of the latest graphics cards have lesser noise and temperature outputs than the previous generation of the GTX 980 and 970. Gaming is much quieter on the two cards besides being much easier to place the 1080 and the 1070 alongside other cards in a multi-GPU setup.
Pricing is an essential determinant when it comes to making a purchasing decision. If you don’t mind spending some extra bucks, then the Nvidia GeForce GTX 1080 should bode well with you coming in at around 550 dollars. It should be sufficient for virtually all tasks, such as video editing and 4K gaming. If you need to save on some money, you can go for the GTX 1070, which should cost you about 40 dollars though it is not available on Nvidia’s website. You can purchase it from different Nvidia’s partners. Both graphics cards also have superior versions in the shape of the GTX 1080 Ti and the GTX 1070 Ti, which cost an extra 150 and 100 dollars more than their respective counterparts. You can opt for these options if you have deep pockets and want the ultimate performance.
The Bottom Line
You should go for the GTX 1080 if you know that most of your tasks are GPU-intensive over the GTX 1070 and 1070 Ti. The price difference between the 1080 and 1070 Ti is quite small, so it would be a good idea to go for the earlier. If high performance, such as 4K gaming, is not a big deal for you, then the GTX 1070 should suffice and will save you some money. The GTX 1080 Ti should do the trick for you and will work on everything you need to handle if you can afford it.