Starting off the new year, we have our first NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2080 series GPU from ASUS. Featured here today is the ASUS Turbo-RTX2080-8G based on NVIDIA’s new Turing 12nm architecture. The ASUS Turbo RTX2080-8G utilizes the TU104 graphics processor includes several new features including the new RT (Raytracing cores) and Tensor cores (AI) to accelerate certain aspects of performance. Feeding these new hungry cores, the GeForce RTX 2080 series GPUs use GDDR6 for improved memory bandwidth. In August of 2018, Patrick was at Hot Chips 30 where NVIDIA showed off its new architecture and new product launches. The new cards use gamer-focused dual fan cooler designs instead of the blower-style coolers we want to see in high-end workstations and servers.
ASUS Turbo-RTX2080-8G Overview
The ASUS Turbo-RTX2080-8G retail box is colorful and has all the features highlighted. “TURBO” and “RTX” are large to catch your eye on a retail shelf, and the box itself is somewhat smaller than other brands which we like.
Only two items appear in the Accessories loadout, including a CDROM which is hardly needed. Most of our readers likely do not even have a CDROM drive these days. The general rule of thumb is to download the latest drivers from NVIDIA and get the latest GPU Tweak from ASUS and your good to go.
The Turbo-RTX2080-8G has a monolith block design with an angled slope at the end of the card. Length of the Turbo-RTX2080-8G is 10.59,” and double-slot width has it fitting in small workstations and servers just fine. ASUS is not supposed to market these cards for use in servers, but we bought this unit and the blower-style cooler is what you want there.
The front of the Turbo-RTX2080-8G offers a clean, smooth matte finish with a decorative finish of angled raised/grooved surfaces. The back does not have a back-plate so take care when installing the card. We wished that ASUS included a backplate. For those using these cards to rip the coolers off and install aftermarket cooling and backplates, this is a cost savings measure that makes sense. For those who want to use this as a compute card, backplates help.
The Turbo-RTX2080-8G uses two power ports, with 1x 8-Pin and 1x 6-Pin connectors that connect out the top, this might be an issue with some server setups where outputs coming out at the end of the card is preferred but should be no issue for workstation uses. You can see how companies deal with these types of layouts in our piece: Avert Your Eyes from the Server Humping Trend in the Data Center. One can also see that the heatsink fins are laid out from the front to rear of the card which is what we want for server and high-end workstation airflow.
Display outputs provided by 2x DisplayPort 1.4 ports and a single HDMI 2.0b port. At the far right, there is a USB Type-C port which comes in handy for VR devices. Companies are trying to push a USB Type-C standard to minimize the number of cables running to VR headsets.
The blower cooler is typical for cards like this. ASUS uses an 80mm dual-ball bearing design which is IP5X dust resistant to protect against dust damage to internal components. For normal operation, the fan is reasonably quiet, but at full speed, it does make a fair amount of noise. If you want quiet, do not get blower-style coolers.
Next, we are going to look at the ASUS Turbo-RTX2080-8G software before doing a quick specification check, and commencing with our performance benchmarks.