[SOLVED] Shopping recommenations, GTX 3060, and Palit StormX, is there a catch ?

Nanako

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Hello all! I'm in the market for a new videocard. I'm generally looking for something affordable and high/mid range. Wishful thinking i know.I'm generally hoping to spend under £600 here, ideally even under 500. I'm willing to go as high as 800 but would rather not

For this reason, I'm leaning towards a GTX 3060, because the new Lite Hash Rate thing nvidia is doing seems to have worked in driving down the price, they're significantly cheaper than similarly rated cards if you can find them. I'm not 100% finalised on this decision, and still open to other recommendations:

There seem to be two notable cards of this type. The normal 3060 which has 12 GB of VRAM, and a passmark score of about 16000, and the TI version which has only 8 GB, but a passmark of 19000. These values are about the range i'm looking for, so i'd love recommendations of similarly affordable cards with around these stats. I haven't even entirely decided on which of the two i'd prefer, it's probably going to come down to price.

Finding these cards is tricky though, more listings are sold out than available, or jacked up to crazy prices. However one particular variant has caught my eye...

The Palit RTX 3060 StormX
https://www.currys.co.uk/gbuk/computing-accessories/components-upgrades/graphics-cards/palit-geforce-rtx-3060-12-gb-stormx-graphics-card-10226511-pdt.html

It's tiny! look at it. Only one fan, and signficantly shorter than most videocards. But this thing claims to have 100% of the power of a normal 3060, and the same 12 GB of VRAM. It's even under £500 and quite broadly available.
This seems a bit too good to be true though, is there a catch here? Does it really have the same power? I don't want to buy it and end up with a tested passmark score of way below 16k

So, a Tl;DR if you've skipped this thread:
1. Is the Palit RTX 3060 StormX really as powerful as a full size card?

and

2. Does anyone have other recommendations for a videocard with at least 16k passmark score, 8GB VRAM, and a price of under £500 ?
 
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What makes this time particularly horrible? Wouldn't demand for expensive items like this be far higher around xmas?
i would love to know why so many things are out of stock
Everything from major storms hitting fabrication facilities, to cryptomining scalpers causing more demand than there is supply, to COVID-19 (more people working from home needing new computers), to worsening trade relations with China, to corporate greed, to paper launches of next-gen GPUs. (I think that's all of them, lol)
As retailers try to get the most from BF/CM, there may be some sales on cards that bring their prices down from ludicrous to just absurd.

Does the same apply to smaller versions of other cards, like the 6600 XT ?
Yes. Any card with a smaller/less efficient thermal solution than mfg. reference/founder's cards will have either lower clock speeds, won't boost as high, won't stay at higher boost clocks as long, or some combination of these.

This is a good insight, exactly the sort of cool technical information i'd love to know!
Do you have any similar insights about the 6600 XT and the RTX 2060 Super ?
And in a broad, opinion sort of way, do you reckon the 3060 TI is worth the extra cost?
Something I forgot to mention, VRAM doesn't do anything for performance unless it's actively being used. 99% (maybe higher) of the AAA titles from the last 5 years will use LESS than or right up to 8GBs of RAM. In every single one of these instances, the RTX 3060 Ti will wipe the floor with all the other cards mentioned - it's not even close. Even in those few titles that go over 8GBs of used VRAM it's not guaranteed that the 12GB RTX 3060 would win. I'm not sure if memory backpressure is used in gaming yet (I should do some research on this ;)) but I'm pretty sure that oldest resources will get cleared first to make room for newer ones. This scenario is also at max graphical settings and 1440p and 4k resolution. If you turn down the settings a bit or run at 1080p, 8GBs will last even longer.

Ultimately, this is your choice. I recently purchased a VERY expensive video card (see last line in sig). I got it for a net cost (after selling my Titan XP) under MSRP but it was still overpriced and the most I've ever spent on a GPU. For me, this is a 4 to 5 year card. I shouldn't have to worry about running out of rasterization horsepower or VRAM for a long while. I'm sure you are in a completely different scenario, with different needs, and have a different cost associated with this purchase. In my eyes the 3060 Ti is worth the difference in price but that's my perspective. I would not consider the 6600 XT or RTX 2060 Super.

Here's a good ranked list - https://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/gpu-hierarchy,4388.html

Don't look at the percentage as much as the order and don't go for last-gen cards if it can be avoided.
 
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The RTX 3060 (non Ti) is a marketing hype card, designed to gets those who think more memory = faster/better card.
Because of memory bus width, NVIDIA had to put either 6GBs or 12GBs on this card. 6GBs wasn't an option because of the competing AMD cards so thay HAD to go with 12GB for the card to have a possibility of success.

Go with the RTX 3060 Ti card and don't look back. ;)
 
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Eximo

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Yes and no. It is the same GPU with the same memory indeed. But the smaller heatsink means that it won't run quite as fast as cards with larger heatsinks.

And yes, the 3060 Ti is much better.

There should also be 6600XT in that price range and they might be easier to come by.
 
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Nanako

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Yes and no. It is the same GPU with the same memory indeed. But the smaller heatsink means that it won't run quite as fast as cards with larger heatsinks.
Why would a smaller heatsink make it run slower? Is it underclocked to compensate and avoid overheating?
 

Nanako

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The RTX 3060 (non Ti) is a marketing hype card, designed to gets those who think more memory = faster/better card.
I don't claim to be an expert on the subject, but VRAM is generally the reason I'm upgrading. I'm currently using an RX 570 and the 4GB of vram it has is not enough to have high textures on a variety of modern games, and more significantly, i'm getting into VR, a lot of games have 6 GB as a hard minimum

As far as i'm aware, VRAM requirements are generally higher for VR games and will probably get moreso, a card more weighted towards memory might suit my needs better
 

Nanako

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But the smaller heatsink means that it won't run quite as fast as cards with larger heatsinks.

There should also be 6600XT in that price range and they might be easier to come by.
On this note, I've gone looking and found several versions of the 6600 XT
https://www.ebuyer.com/1289111-powercolor-radeon-rx-6600-8gb-fighter-graphics-card-axrx-6600-8gbd6-3dh

https://www.ebuyer.com/1285807-gigabyte-radeon-rx-6600-xt-gaming-oc-8gb-graphics-card-gv-r66xtgaming-oc-8gd

Like with the others, the difference seems to be in size and number of fans. Can you tell about what this means for performance?
 

Nanako

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Additionally i have found one final card that meets my requirements for specs and price range, the RTX 2060 Super

So in total, i'm looking at four possible cards

These three are all roughly equivilant in price and specs
RTX 2060 Super
GTX 3060
Radeon 6600 XT


And the GTX 3060 TI which is approximately 40-60% more expensive, for a roughly 18% increase in the passmark score (and presumably the performance as a result)

Is the TI really worth it? Those numbers don't seem to add up
 
I don't claim to be an expert on the subject, but VRAM is generally the reason I'm upgrading. I'm currently using an RX 570 and the 4GB of vram it has is not enough to have high textures on a variety of modern games, and more significantly, i'm getting into VR, a lot of games have 6 GB as a hard minimum
The memory interface of the 3060 (non-Ti) is eunuched. Unless you will definitely, continually be playing games that use more than 8GBs of VRAM, AND you don't mind running those games at lower graphical settings, you should look elsewhere. You'll reach the rasterization capability limit of the 3060 before you regularly run out of VRAM.

Also, this is a horrible time to be buying a GPU. If you can wait, wait. Maybe there will be some 'okay' deals during the holiday sales.
 
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Nanako

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Also, this is a horrible time to be buying a GPU. If you can wait, wait. Maybe there will be some 'okay' deals during the holiday sales.
What makes this time particularly horrible? Wouldn't demand for expensive items like this be far higher around xmas?

i would love to know why so many things are out of stock
 

Nanako

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The memory interface of the 3060 (non-Ti) is eunuched.
This is a good insight, exactly the sort of cool technical information i'd love to know!

Do you have any similar insights about the 6600 XT and the RTX 2060 Super ?

And in a broad, opinion sort of way, do you reckon the 3060 TI is worth the extra cost?
 
What makes this time particularly horrible? Wouldn't demand for expensive items like this be far higher around xmas?
i would love to know why so many things are out of stock
Everything from major storms hitting fabrication facilities, to cryptomining scalpers causing more demand than there is supply, to COVID-19 (more people working from home needing new computers), to worsening trade relations with China, to corporate greed, to paper launches of next-gen GPUs. (I think that's all of them, lol)
As retailers try to get the most from BF/CM, there may be some sales on cards that bring their prices down from ludicrous to just absurd.

Does the same apply to smaller versions of other cards, like the 6600 XT ?
Yes. Any card with a smaller/less efficient thermal solution than mfg. reference/founder's cards will have either lower clock speeds, won't boost as high, won't stay at higher boost clocks as long, or some combination of these.

This is a good insight, exactly the sort of cool technical information i'd love to know!
Do you have any similar insights about the 6600 XT and the RTX 2060 Super ?
And in a broad, opinion sort of way, do you reckon the 3060 TI is worth the extra cost?
Something I forgot to mention, VRAM doesn't do anything for performance unless it's actively being used. 99% (maybe higher) of the AAA titles from the last 5 years will use LESS than or right up to 8GBs of RAM. In every single one of these instances, the RTX 3060 Ti will wipe the floor with all the other cards mentioned - it's not even close. Even in those few titles that go over 8GBs of used VRAM it's not guaranteed that the 12GB RTX 3060 would win. I'm not sure if memory backpressure is used in gaming yet (I should do some research on this ;)) but I'm pretty sure that oldest resources will get cleared first to make room for newer ones. This scenario is also at max graphical settings and 1440p and 4k resolution. If you turn down the settings a bit or run at 1080p, 8GBs will last even longer.

Ultimately, this is your choice. I recently purchased a VERY expensive video card (see last line in sig). I got it for a net cost (after selling my Titan XP) under MSRP but it was still overpriced and the most I've ever spent on a GPU. For me, this is a 4 to 5 year card. I shouldn't have to worry about running out of rasterization horsepower or VRAM for a long while. I'm sure you are in a completely different scenario, with different needs, and have a different cost associated with this purchase. In my eyes the 3060 Ti is worth the difference in price but that's my perspective. I would not consider the 6600 XT or RTX 2060 Super.

Here's a good ranked list - https://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/gpu-hierarchy,4388.html

Don't look at the percentage as much as the order and don't go for last-gen cards if it can be avoided.
 
Reactions: Nanako
Alright, thank you everyone, after reading all these posts, i have purchased a 3060 TI
it'll arrive tomorrow, hooray for next day delivery!
Out of curiosity, what's the rest of your system specs (including PSU)? 3060 Ti specs are listed with a 600W minimum for the PSU but it would have to be an good quality 600W.

If the rest of your system is up to it, you'll be able to just toss all those graphics/eye-candy settings to max for most games! Enjoy! :)
 

Nanako

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Out of curiosity, what's the rest of your system specs (including PSU)? 3060 Ti specs are listed with a 600W minimum for the PSU but it would have to be an good quality 600W.
My PSU is this one
https://www.scan.co.uk/products/660w-seasonic-platinum-full-modular-80plus-platinum-atx-psu

At the time i bought it, it was pretty top quality, im not sure how it stacks up these days, are power supply units something that sees innovation and development constantly?

Ryzen 7 2700X
16 GB Ram, although i don't know more specific things about that at this exact second
 
Oh boy. That's not good.
You just bought a great GPU but your CPU/RAM will be holding it back.

What motherboard do you have? The cheapest increase in performance would be to get a matching pair of RAM sticks (2x8GB sold in a kit) that run at 3200MHz minimum. The Radeon 1000 and 2000 series CPUs live (and die) by the speed of the RAM.

Edit - Actually, what's the actual model of your RAM. Maybe it's 3200MHz RAM just running at below default speed...?
 

Nanako

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Oh boy. That's not good.
You just bought a great GPU but your CPU/RAM will be holding it back.

What motherboard do you have? The cheapest increase in performance would be to get a matching pair of RAM sticks (2x8GB sold in a kit) that run at 3200MHz minimum. The Radeon 1000 and 2000 series CPUs live (and die) by the speed of the RAM.

Edit - Actually, what's the actual model of your RAM. Maybe it's 3200MHz RAM just running at below default speed...?
Motherboard
ASUSTeK COMPUTER INC. ROG STRIX X470-F GAMING

RAM: Both chips are Corsair CMV8GX4M1A2133C15
 

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