Nvidia GeForce RTX 2060 Super and RTX 2070 Super review: Changing the game, again

They completely redefine the landscape for high-end graphics cards.

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We’re going to wrap things up with a game that isn’t really a visual barn-burner, but still tops the Steam charts day in and day out. We test Grand Theft Auto V ($30 on Humble) with all options turned to Very High, all Advanced Graphics options except extended shadows enabled, and FXAA. GTA V runs on the RAGE engine and has received substantial updates since its initial launch.

gtav Brad Chacos/IDG

Once again, the Super duo takes on all comers, and that goes doubly so for similarly priced competition. If you play at 1080p resolution, however, all of these cards deliver a comparable gaming experience because GTA V stalls out just north of 100 fps in our current high-end testing setup.

Shadow of the Tomb Raider ray tracing performance

Nvidia crammed more dedicated real-time ray tracing hardware into the Super GPUs, so we wanted to put that to the test, too.

Shadow of the Tomb Raider supports ray traced shadows, and it doesn’t insta-murder your frame rate, especially when paired with Nvidia’s Deep-Learning Super Sampling (DLSS) technology. DLSS uses the dedicated tensor cores in RTX GPUs to use AI to perform supersampling with a lower performance hit, reclaiming some of the frame rate lost by enabling real-time ray tracing. If you want to know more nitty-gritty details, be sure to check out our deep-dive into the Nvidia Turing GPU architecture. It’s fascinating stuff.

sotr rtx Brad Chacos/IDG

We tested ray tracing performance with RTX Shadows set to both Medium and Ultra settings, and DLSS on and off for each, using the game’s built-in benchmark. Resolution was set to 2560x1440 for all runs. Radeon cards lack dedicated ray tracing hardware and cannot enable these options, so we didn’t benchmark any of AMD’s offerings.

If you’re interested in ray tracing, you’ll definitely want to invest in the Super versions of these cards.

Of particular note: Though real-time ray tracing sometimes gets slammed by enthusiasts for its performance cost, enabling ray-traced shadows at Medium quality with DLSS in tow results in frame rates identical to running the game without ray tracing enabled. Not too shabby! Nvidia and its partners have been putting a lot of work into RTX technology implementations. In Shadow of the Tomb Raider, you can find some areas of fine detail that are slightly blurrier with DLSS enabled if you look hard enough, but the visual boost from the real-time shadows is well worth it in my opinion.

Next page: Power draw, thermals, and noise

At a Glance
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