Which Is the Better Graphics Card: Reference, Founders Edition or AIB?

Krazie_Ivan

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Aug 22, 2012
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"When Nvidia launched its 10-series (based on the Pascal architecture) in 2016, the company also introduced the concept of the Founders Edition graphics card, which is slightly different than the reference approach. Founders Edition cards are sort of like reference design cards, but are meant to be sold to the general public with the Nvidia branding and, thus, compete with partner cards based off the same reference architecture."

didn't Nvidia sell cards direct-to-public prior to Pascal? and didn't they bin/keep the dies for themselves which performed best in voltage/heat terms? ...i seem to recall the announcement of "Founders Edition", where they repeatedly said "reference" by accident & everyone kinda nervously chuckled cause they all knew it was nothing more than a marketing move to artificially increase MSRP.

edit: GN & others claim that Founders cards are NOT binned at all. any definitive info to verify this one way or the other, Kev?
 

Countgreen

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What resolution do you play at? What refresh rate do you play at? How much are you willing to spend? This will help you decide if you want to go with AMD or Nvidia. The FE model for the 2080 ti at least is cheaper than a third party's card. The FE cards for AMD or Nvidia will run hotter than most custom cards from other manufacturers. Also, a lot of cards come with a higher out of the box clock speed than the FE models.
 

kcarbotte

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https://www.techpowerup.com/247660/nvidia-segregates-turing-gpus-factory-overclocking-forbidden-on-the-cheaper-variant

https://www.gamersnexus.net/hwreviews/3386-nvidias-secret-gpu-tu106-400-vs-400a-2070-xc-ultra-review

Am I interpreting these articles wrong?
Seems to me that Nvidia is using stronger GPUs for the Founder's Edition than the typical reference-priced cards from third-party vendors.




 

Krazie_Ivan

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this quote from Pascal launch, when Nvidia 1st used the "Founders" branding, was what i was on about :

"Every single instance of “Founder's Edition” can be replaced with the word “Reference,” using previous-gen nomenclature. There is not one difference in its market positioning. They are synonymous. NVidia has replaced its “Reference” name with “Founder's Edition.”
- There are not two GTX 1080 models made by nVidia. Only the “Founder's Edition” exists; there is not a cheaper card made by nVidia than the $700 Founder's Edition, which ships first.
- Just to be clear: nVidia is making one official GTX 1080 and one official GTX 1070 model.
- The “Founder's Edition” is not specially binned.
- The “Founder's Edition” uses the new industrial design and cooler from nVidia. Historically, this is what we would call the “reference cooler.” The cooler is more-or-less identical to the previous reference models.

https://www.gamersnexus.net/news-pc/2427-difference-between-gtx-1080-founders-edition-and-reference

but for Turing, it does seem as-though Nvidia has created a way to back the claim that Founders cards are better than MSRP cards... although they are doing it by selling lower quality Turing chips w/o clearly marking the 3rd party vendor packaging/marketing specs so the avg consumer will know if they are buying an "A" binned/stepped die :

"NVIDIA has always used just one ID per SKU, no matter if custom-design, reference or Founders Edition. ...for Turing, NVIDIA is creating two device IDs per GPU to correspond to two different ASIC codes per GPU model (for example, TU102-300 and TU102-300-A for the RTX 2080 Ti)."


either way, Nvidia is being deceptive with both generations. spose there's no way to easily & fully inform people about what they are buying ...& i don't envy your job.
:)
 

Co BIY

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Jun 18, 2015
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Although those article's do indicate that Nvidea is creating two bins/SKU of near identical chips I don't think they support the article's claim that FE cards get the better chips and AIB partners necessarily get lesser chips. This seems especially unlikely since FE cards tend to have lower performance.

Could these chips be the same design but manufactured by different Foundries or even different plants/equipment that result in slightly different driver requirements for optimum performance?

Intel is famous for it's "Copy Exactly!" system for multiple production lines. Perhaps this is what happens when a chip company does something less than "Copy Exactly!".

An analogous example could be that Toyota built Camry sedans for sale in the US in two factories, one in the US and one in Japan. The cars are nearly indistinguishable with the same performance and key specifications but for certain replacement parts there is a difference in part number because Toyota used local suppliers for for each factory.
 

redgarl

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Jun 4, 2009
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In the past, coolers were really bad on reference design, but lately, they got way better.

Here is the issue, the PCB is always better on reference design, however the cooler was better on 3rd party.

As of now, I would buy a RVII from AMD directly, or a 2060 RTX directly from Nvidia.

I always loved MSI product for their build quality of their PCB (they last forever), but with the recent interview with MSI dishing AMD CPUs, I will not support tehm outside of motherboards.
 

mitch074

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A small exception was the RX480 reference design, which had indeed top notch PCB design, but even the blower style cooler was better than most AIB cards that came out the following year. All that while being cheaper.
 

kinggremlin

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With Turing, there are 2 different GPU SKU's for each card. The FE cards are getting the better chip. Beyond that, I doubt Nvidia is doing any further binning.
 

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