ASUS has decided to give the GeForce RTX 3060 Ti its TUF treatment, revisiting about every performance and design aspect the Nvidia GeForce RTX 3060 Ti FE featured on launch date.TUF is ASUS branding for a more rugged, resistant focus family of products. They usually are more low-key and less features than its more expansive ROG sibling. Instead brings a special focus to its product robustness, and engineering. In short, the last component to die in your build will be a TUF one.
TUF Gaming RTX 3060 Ti quick Specs:
|Clocks||1750 MHz – 1780 MHz (OC)|
|Standard Memory Config||8 GB GDDR6|
|Tensor Cores||3rd Generation|
|Maximum GPU Temperature||93 C|
- unseen performances on a xx60 series
- Double CUDA Core count from the RTX 2060 Super
- Awesome cooling block
- DUAL-BIOS switch
- Engineering ( VRM and Re-enforced capacitors).
- Temps are amazingly good
- Stop-fan below 55c.
- No Stock since launch date
- MSRP prices are rarely reflected by sellers
The TUF Gaming GeForce RTX 3060 Ti comes with a significantly larger cooling block than Nvidia’s Founder’s edition. It is also thicker filling 2.7 slots, which is what most recent cards tends to fill.Let’s note the addition of that second HDMI 2.1 port, which is a TUF add-on. perfect for people who want to power both a monitor or TV and a VR headset without swapping wires constantly.
Under the hood
It is powered by a GA104-200, a 8nm written dies, featuring 17,400 million transistors organized 4,864 CUDA cores, 152 Tensor cores for our AI DLSS abilities, and 38 Ray tracing cores, noticeably less than available on its predecessor.
But don’t be fooled by the lower core count, These are 3rd gen Tensor Cores, which is twice more powerful than its previous iteration.
We have more than twice the amount of CUDA cores than on its predecessor. Actually, 1800 more cores than the RTX 2080 which did cost about twice the RTX 3060 Ti does today.Add to that a copious 8 GB off DDR6 ram, with a net result of 448Gb/s of memory bandwidth, same amount found on the ETX 2080 or its more expensive sibling the RTX 3070. See where I am going with this? The 3060Ti has nothing of a Medium budget / medium performance card it was expected to be. It is a monstrously powerful card, which surpasses all of its expectations. But it doesn’t end here. Instead of its usual 1.41 Ghz base clock, ASUS has cranked up their poppy to a steamy 1785 Mhz in OC mode…
The VRM We have no less than 8 50 Amps power stages. That’s right, we got 400 Amps worth of power to feed our GPU larger area. Being a TUF, the capacitors have been reinforced with Military graded capacitors, which…
yes, I try to keep it serious when ASUS says anything is military graded… cause obviously, in a military conflict situation, throwing this card at your adversary will probably cause serious damage.
More seriously, it means that these capacitors were re-enforced, and can last about twice its competition at a bout 5000 hours life-span.
Powerful, and durable, exactly what ASUS had to do to provide this card with strong a foundation, a massive engineering Kudos to ASUS for this!
Energy ConsumptionDespite these impressive number, the TUF GAMING GeForce RTX 3060 Ti is impressively energy efficient, idling at only 16 watts, and inputting about 220 watts whilst gaming, with short bursts up-to 270 Watts.
Therefore I would recommend no more than a 600 Watt PSU for any builds which will run the TUF Gaming GeForce RTX 3060Ti at its core.
And that is a definite budget plus!
But where the TUF RTX 3060ti also shines, is in its really well-designed cooling abilities.
We have this beautiful large and 2.7-slot tall fin stack.
Fed by 4 large-diameter copper pipes, it does an impeccable job at radiating most of our GPU heat away.
In addition, it is dressed by 3 90mm 0db fans, which thanks to its dual ball bearings can last up to a whooping 60 000 hours each, twice more than our usual sleeve bearing.Removing them was rather easy, just look for these 3 screws only accessible through the fan blades, other than that it is straight forward.
I tried to gather more information on these Champion branded fans, but nothing more than their extraordinary self-explanatory name : cf9010u12d.
Cooling results are, well, pretty much impressive if not top of its class.
During a full hour stress test, the capacitors showed an ice cool 51c, which surprised me enough to repeat temperature test several times, and double check with software thermals.
The GPU remained at about 65-70c all along the stress test, which is equally impressive.
It is simply that cool!
The combinations of a massive fin block, with these 3 really efficient fans gives us one, if not the, coolest card on the market for that type of temps.
A quieter Card
The fans stop spinning when GPU temperatures fall below 55 degrees Celsius, allowing a quiet desktop whilst doing non-GPU intensive tasks.And when they do spin, well they are almost silent, giving me a barely noticeable 35db when left on auto in the midst of gaming.
In game performances, cause that is what truly matters.I have tested some of the most demanding graphics engines I know about, the TUF Gaming GeForce RTX 3060 Ti continues to deliver way beyond its price point.
Cyberpunk, at Ultra RAY Tracing, and well, ultra-everything else, was more than playable at 1080, but started to show some faiblesse at 4k.
Still it is incredibly performant, and surpasses what a 800 dollars card like the GeForce RTX2080 used to allow!
Same story with Watch Dog: Legion and Call Of Duty : Cold War, where I saw frame rates going above 75 in ultra 1k, and still pretty much playable at 4k, though I had to reduce setting to high instead of ultra.
3DMark gave me a score of 11,264 (again surpassing its much more expensive GeForce RTX2080 sibling) , and confirmed my temperature finding, which again are ridiculously good!One last point I want to cover, and a contentious one:
The TUF gaming GeForce RTX 3060Ti is a PCIe 4.0 card. The Ampere powered cards are Nvidia first time implementation of that standard, which doubles our PCIe lane bandwidth. But since this card, and all of the other 3000 series card, are still to outperform the PCIe 3.0 standard, you will have no performance gain from one to another, what so ever.
First I’ll note the presence of a DUAL BIOS switch which is rare enough on even expensive video cards. it will allow you to go for either performance or Quiet mode with the flick of a switch.Much easier than having to go play with GPU-Z options and setting. Something the competition should seriously take note of.
Obviously the card is fully supported by ASUS now very well known GPU TWEAK II which gives a more detailed customization ability to your card. ASUS being ASUS we do have a rather discreet but very stylish RGB strip back lidding a TUF logo, love the strong under-lined touch, which is obviously AURA compliant 😊
At about 470 USD, the TUF Gaming GeForce RTX 3060 Ti, is an absolute gaming must, especially for Ray Traced 1440p resolution.
It simply redefines what that price-segment could deliver before, by doubling its performance metrics. It straight up equals or out-performs a 800-1000 dollars such as the GeForce RTX 2080 .
ASUS really did an amazing job with its cooling solution, and gave us a Truly premium, well designed gaming card at an acceptable price point!
*The only problem here is, as the rest of NVIDIA 3000 series, they are extremely hard to find, and pricing varies from MSRP to double that (at time of this article).
Assuming that future readers will have more favorable stock and will be able to purchase at MSRP pricing:
For budget conscience hardcore gamers, well, the 3060ti is a dream come true, allowing a gaming experience, never seen before on a sub-thousand dollar build!