NVIDIA this morning has sent over a quick note revealing the release date for their next GeForce desktop video card, the RTX 3060. The mainstream(ish) video card, previously revealed at CES 2021 with a late February release date, has now been locked in for a launch on February 25th, with prices starting at $329.

As a quick recap, the RTX 3060 is the next card down in NVIDIA’s Ampere architecture consumer video card stack. Using the new GA106 GPU – which is already shipping in RTX 3060 laptops – the RTX 3060 follows the traditional price/performance cadence for video card launches, with NVIDIA releasing a cheaper and lower performing video card for the mainstream-enthusiast video card market. NVIDIA’s 60-tier cards have long been the company’s workhorse parts for 1080p gaming – as well as some of their highest-volume parts in North America – and the RTX 3060 is expected to fill the same role within the Ampere/30-series family.

NVIDIA GeForce Specification Comparison
  RTX 3060 RTX 3060 Ti RTX 2060 GTX 1060
CUDA Cores 3584 4864 1920 1280
ROPs 64? 80 48 48
Boost Clock 1.78GHz 1.665GHz 1.68GHz 1.709GHz
Memory Clock 14Gbps? GDDR6 14Gbps GDDR6 14Gbps GDDR6 8Gbps GDDR5
Memory Bus Width 192-bit 256-bit 192-bit 192-bit
Single Precision Perf. 12.8 TFLOPS 16.2 TFLOPS 6.5 TFLOPS 4.4 TFLOPS
Tensor Perf. (FP16) 51.2 TFLOPS 64.8 TFLOPS 51.6 TFLOPS N/A
Tensor Perf. (FP16-Sparse) 102.4 TFLOPS 129.6 TFLOPS 51.6 TFLOPS N/A
TDP 170W 200W 160W 120W
GPU GA106 GA104 TU106 GP106
Transistor Count ?B 17.4B 10.8B 4.4B
Architecture Ampere Ampere Turing Pascal
Manufacturing Process Samsung 8nm? Samsung 8nm TSMC 12nm "FFN" TSMC 16nm
Launch Date 02/25/2021 12/02/2020 01/15/2019 07/19/2016
Launch Price MSRP: $329 MSRP: $399 MSRP: $349 MSRP: $249
Founders $299

NVIDIA has already published most of the specifications for the card back in January. Including the fact that it offers 28 SMs (3584 CUDA cores), and 12GB of GDDR6 running on a 192-bit memory bus. As with previous 60-tier cards, the non-power-of-two memory bus means that NVIDIA is shipping with a somewhat odd amount of memory, in this case 12GB, which is actually more than what comes on even the RTX 3080. However with the only other option being an anemic-for-2021 6GB, NVIDIA is opting to make sure that the card isn’t for want of VRAM capacity.

Meanwhile, for better or worse the RTX 3060 is all-but-guaranteed to fly off of shelves quickly. With every video card more powerful than a GTX 1050 Ti seemingly getting shanghaied into mining Ethereum, desperate gamers will be fighting with hungry miners for supplies. Even with the 192-bit memory bus, I would be shocked if the RTX 3060 wasn’t profitable, especially with Ethereum reaching record highs. So for anyone thinking of grabbing the card, best be prepared to camp out at your favorite retailer or e-tailer on that Thursday morning.

On a final note, unlike the other RTX 30 series cards launched to date, NVIDIA will not be producing any Founders Edition cards for the RTX 3060 series. So all of the cards released will be AIB cards with their own respective designs. And, if tradition holds, don't be surprised if we see the AIBs outfit their cards with premium features and raise their prices accordingly.

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  • RadiclDreamer - Tuesday, February 16, 2021 - link

    Streaming game services are awful, even with my gig synchronous fiber connection it isnt anywhere close to being responsive enough for me to see it as anything other than a novelty
  • Unashamed_unoriginal_username_x86 - Saturday, February 13, 2021 - link

    Honestly, I'm thankful I haven't had any money to shell out for a GPU since forever. All tech news has been meaningless to me, I just like to hear about numbers going up and what those funny numbers mean.
  • VoraciousGorak - Saturday, February 13, 2021 - link

    Indeed. I got lucky enough to pick up a janky mined-out 1080 Ti super cheap just after the last crypto bust. I have to set the power target at 60% to not get memory artifacts, but that's still plenty for 1440p 144Hz. Which is good, because that and my 2700X are probably gonna have to hold out for at least a few more years....
  • Spunjji - Monday, February 15, 2021 - link

    That's very lucky indeed - the 1080Ti is one of those cards that I frowned at on release for the sheer cost, but has turned out to be an unexpected long-term bargain vs. buying mid-tier cards and replacing them more frequently.
  • basroil - Saturday, February 13, 2021 - link

    I'm ok with raising the price target to $350 for the XX60 range and $450 for the XX70 range, it's in line with inflation elsewhere and cost to performance ratio is still better than the past range by quite a bit. I'm not OK with board partners turning a blind eye to scalpers and miners, the first they can actually stop most of the time by working with FBI/customs & boarders/DOJ since many scalpers are selling them to miners in Iran, a huge violation of export compliance
  • Spunjji - Monday, February 15, 2021 - link

    "it's in line with inflation elsewhere"
    Not even close. The GTX 960 was $199 in 2014, which is $220 in 2021 dollars. Nvidia added $50 going from the 960 to the 1060, and then another $100 on top of that up to the 2060 at $399 on release. The fact that they haven't been *quite* so egregious with the 3060 is only a reflection of expected competition from AMD, and doesn't magically erase all of that interim gouging - we'd be at $220 if it were just inflation, and I'd be willing to contemplate $275 to account for the ever-increasing design complexity (that we didn't actually ask for).

    "cost to performance ratio is still better than the past range by quite a bit"
    Only by a little, not "quite a bit", and certainly not in line with what you'd expect after a die-shrink - again, they've been massively *under-performing* on that metric for at least 3 years now. The power of the human mind to normalise this stuff is amazing.
  • RadiclDreamer - Tuesday, February 16, 2021 - link

    Incredibly well said. Nvidia and AMD are BOTH pushing to see how far they can get the prices.
  • euskalzabe - Tuesday, February 16, 2021 - link

    This, a thousand times. Perfectly put. Not many of us seem to have historical perspective these days.
  • Spunjji - Monday, February 15, 2021 - link

    Yup. There's no way in hell I'm following Nvidia down that merry little path; especially not for a GPU that - when assessed objectively - has a pathetic performance increase over its predecessor.
  • plonk420 - Friday, February 12, 2021 - link

    heh, i was just discussing how i missed flagships (like the HD5870) being under $400. noticed this article reading the 5870/GTX480 reviews 😂

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