Zotac Nvidia GTX 980 Ti Graphics Card Review

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With the PC graphics world in a fizz about the new AMD Radeon Fury X and our sample being lost in the world shortage, we have turned our attention to one of its main rivals, the Nvidia GTX 980 Ti. Nvidia are not sin free when it comes to shortages at launch, we wrote on our old site of the global shortage on the launch of the GTX 680, and wondered why you would launch something that is not going to be available? Sold out in the first day the Fury X may have been, but a recent discussion with suppliers discovered that the few retailers that got their hands on the Radeon Fury X, only had around ten units for launch day. We reckon the number of units, in the UK for example, may have been around 35 on launch day, give or take five or ten at the most.

This could be a good time for Nvidia, because when you are itching to buy a high end card such as the Fury X, we know you sometimes cannot wait after launch day disappointment. So what should you consider? At the same price point, you have the aforementioned GTX 980 Ti, a recent high end release from Nvidia, AMD’s main rival in the graphics market.

Another GM20x chip variation and slots in just below the Titan X, the GTX 980 Ti confirms rumours that Nvidia were planning something to fill the gap between the GTX 980 and the Titan X, the latter being out of most normal gamers price range. Promising DirectX 12, virtual reality or VR support and 4K gaming, the GTX 980 Ti is for many, the upgrade in preparation for the end of 2015 and the advent of VR gaming in 2016.

On the flip side, some may be wondering why the Ti is even required? It looks like it is trying to give the Titan X a bloody nose, but Nvidia and fan base alike, are always eager to have a “Ti” version of their cards, it’s an expected variant, like the iPhone 6s or the Samsung S4 mini.

GeForce GTX 980 TiGeForce GTX 980GeForce GTX TITAN X
Stream Processors281620483072
Core Clock1000MHz1126MHz1000MHz
Texture Units176128192
Memory Clock7010MHz GDDR57010MHz GDDR57010MHz GDDR5
Memory Bus Width384-bit256-bit384-bit
Transistor Count8 Billion5.2 Billion8 Billion
Manufacturing ProcessTSMC 28nmTSMC 28nmTSMC 28nm
Launch Date01/06/1518/09/1417/03/15

There is less than three months between the Titan X and the Ti, so there would have been parallel development, possibly in the form of any Titan optimisations that were realised too late, being pumped into the Ti release.

In the table above, the Ti sits comfortably above the standard GTX 980, it is easily a slightly trimmed Titan with half the video memory rather than a beefed up GTX 980. Good news for everybody saving for a Titan X or who has just pre-ordered a Radeon Fury X for their high end rig.

This card is also trying to ensure a future, with DX12 being a Windows 10 feature and not available to the masses yet, VR set to be something for 2016 to contend with and 4K gaming reserved for the elite few with deep pockets, Nvidia may just be securing their future, at least from a propaganda point of view.

If you are saving hard for your next amazing build, we think this would be on your shopping list before a 4K monitor, and maybe even Windows 10, meaning this card may mostly be used by many, for high end 1080p gaming until 4K monitors come down in price.

Product Shots

Good to see Zotac using the safer packaging, from static and breaking up. Not much included in the box though, a minus for such a high end card, though Nvidia include the recently pulled Batman Arkham Knight as a download code.

Zotac Nvidia GTX 980 Ti Graphics Card Review

Package and Bundle - 8.5
Performance - 9.2
Price - 8
Consumer Experience - 9.5


If you have deep pockets this is a no brainer, it is intelligently fast, quiet and two, three or even four of these in SLi will set you apart for the next 12 months from just about anyone with cash to burn on the best gaming rig money can buy. As for the Titan X's bloody nose, well who would buy a Titan X now?

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