GPUs Hardware Reviews

Flash of Superlatives: MSI GeForce RTX 2080 Ti Lightning Z in review

WITH the GeForce RTX 2080 Ti Lightning Z, MSI has once again made a real catch. This is because there is a significant increase compared to the GeForce RTX 2080 Ti Gaming X Trio, which has already been tested. Our detailed test...

WITH the GeForce RTX 2080 Ti Lightning Z, MSI has once again made a real catch. This is because there is a significant increase compared to the GeForce RTX 2080 Ti Gaming X Trio, which has already been tested. The card again relies on a Triplefan cooler (2x 9.5 cm and 1x 8.5 cm fan) as well as the mandatory RGB effects and additionally on an OLED display at the top. It is also equipped with the TU102, has 11 GB Of GDDR6 graphics memory and offers everything else we already know from the trio. And of course also a decent more.

The 1.8 kg card is a proud 33 cm long, measures from top slot panel to top edge graphic card case a whopping 13 cm and is 5.5 cm thick. In addition, there is another 0.5 cm for the carbon backplate. This is almost a real triple slot design, because the slot aperture also has a lot of over-width. This means that it can already encounter space problems if housings are too small. The cover is made of plastic with optical accents such as Carbon and gold light metal applications and the indispensable RGB lighting. The appropriate unboxing video can be found here:

At the top, the willing buyer will find a nice OLED display, which, like RGB lighting, can be controlled via the MSI software and is also able to display various status values in real time. The remaining details can be found in the following picture gallery and of course also in the description of board details and coolers including a long tear-down video. I don't want to pre-empt this, but I also want to get the first-page-last-page readers to turn over.

MSI delivers the card with three external 8-pin ATX power supply connectors. The complete connection is mandatory and we will also see why. All previous Turing cards with the TP102 did not reach 380 Watt++ power consumption for the entire card even with OC and raising the predetermined power target, which could also be changed this time with a little effort. But more on that later. The screenshot of GPU-Z gives us a first impression:

Technical data and comparison maps

At the end of this introduction, the maps of the new generation and those of the old generation in direct tabular comparison:

MSI GeForce
RTX 2080 Ti
Lightning Z
Nvidia GeForce
RTX 2080 Ti
Fe
Nvidia GeForce
RTX 1080 Ti
Fe
Nvidia GeForce
RTX 2080
Fe
Nvidia GeForce
RTX 1080
Fe
Chip Turing (TU102) Turing (TU102) Pascal (GP102) Turing (TU104) Pascal (GP104)
CUDA Cores
4352 4352 3584 2944 2560
Tensor-Cores 544 544 No 368 No
RT Cores 68 68 No 48 No
TMUs 272 272 224 184 160
Basic clock 1350 1350 MHz 1480 MHz 1515 MHz 1607 MHz
Boost clock 1770 1635 MHz 1582 MHz 1800 MHz 1733 MHz
Memory 11GB GDDR6 11GB GDDR6 11GB GDDR5X 8GB GDDR6 8GB GDDRX5
Interface 352-bit 352-bit 352-bit 256-bit 256-bitSiecherba
Memory bandwidth 616 GB/s 616 GB/s 484 GB/s 448 GB/s 320 GB/s
Rops 88 88 88 64 64
L2 cache 5.5MB 5.5MB 2.75MB 4MB 2MB
Tdp 380W 260W 250w 225W 180w
Transistors 18.6 billion 18.6 billion 12 billion 13.6 billion 7.2 billion
Chip size 754 mm2 754 mm2 471 mm2 545 mm2 314 mm2
Sli Yes (x8 NVLink, x2) Yes (x8 NVLink, x2) Yes (MIO) Yes (x8 NVLink) Yes (MIO)

 

Test system and measurement methods

We have already described the new test system and the methodology in detail in the basic article "How We Test Graphics Cards, as of February 2017" and therefore refer to this detailed basis for simplicity. Description. So if you want to read everything again, you are welcome to do so. However, we have again improved CPU and cooling to largely exclude possible CPU bottlenecks for this fast card.

If you are interested, the summary in table form quickly provides a brief overview:

Test systems and measuring rooms
Hardware:
Intel Core i7-8700K x 5 GHz
MSI Z370 Gaming Pro Carbon AC
16GB KFA2 DDR4 4000 Hall of Fame
1x 1 TByte Toshiba OCZ RD400 (M.2, System SSD)
2x 960 GByte Toshiba OCZ TR150 (Storage, Images)
Be Quiet Dark Power Pro 11, 850-watt power supply
Cooling:
Alphacool Ice Block XPX
5x Be Quiet! Silent Wings 3 PWM (Closed Case Simulation)
Thermal Grizzly Kryonaut (for cooler change)
Housing:
Lian Li PC-T70 with expansion kit and modifications
Modes: Open Benchtable, Closed Case
Monitor: Eizo EV3237-BK
Power consumption:
non-contact DC measurement on the PCIe slot (Riser-Card)
non-contact DC measurement on the external PCIe power supply
Direct voltage measurement on the respective feeders and on the power supply
2x Rohde & Schwarz HMO 3054, 500 MHz multi-channel oscillograph with memory function
4x Rohde & Schwarz HZO50, current togor adapter (1 mA to 30 A, 100 KHz, DC)
4x Rohde & Schwarz HZ355, touch divider (10:1, 500 MHz)
1x Rohde & Schwarz HMC 8012, digital multimeter with storage function
Thermography:
Optris PI640, infrared camera
PI Connect evaluation software with profiles
Acoustics:
NTI Audio M2211 (with calibration file)
Steinberg UR12 (with phantom power for the microphones)
Creative X7, Smaart v.7
own low-reflection measuring room, 3.5 x 1.8 x 2.2 m (LxTxH)
Axial measurements, perpendicular to the center of the sound source(s), measuring distance 50 cm
Noise in dBA (Slow) as RTA measurement
Frequency spectrum as a graph
Operating system Windows 10 Pro (1803, all updates)

 

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About the author

Igor Wallossek

Editor-in-chief and name-giver of igor'sLAB as the content successor of Tom's Hardware Germany, whose license was returned in June 2019 in order to better meet the qualitative demands of web content and challenges of new media such as YouTube with its own channel.

Computer nerd since 1983, audio freak since 1979 and pretty much open to anything with a plug or battery for over 50 years.

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