New Nvidia gaming cards include AI, real-time ray tracing
At Gamescom in Germany, Nvidia Corp. on Monday announced its new line of gaming-focused graphics cards that it said were at least six times as fast as the prior generation.
Based off the company’s Turing chip architecture, Nvidia NVDA, +1.23% Chief Executive Jensen Huang said that the company had spent 10 years developing the next-generation graphics cards that include features such as real-time ray tracing and artificial intelligence. Ray tracing is a technology that simulates the physical behavior of light, which in turn makes scenes rendered with the tech look closer to what viewers experience during a film.
“Turing opens up a new golden age of gaming, with realism only possible with ray tracing, which most people thought was still a decade away,” said Huang at Gamescom. “The breakthrough is a hybrid rendering model that boosts today’s computer graphics with the addition of lightning-fast ray-tracing acceleration and AI. RTX is going to define a new look for computer graphics.”
In addition to ray-tracing technology, Huang said the Turing architecture’s artificial-intelligence component will improve the image quality of videogame graphics as well as special effects.
The new cards are substantially more expensive than the prior generation. The lowest-end Turing card for gaming, the GeForce RTX 2070, is $499. The company’s more advanced offering, called the RTX 2080, is priced at $799, and the top-of-the-line RTX 2080 Ti will run $1,199. Nvidia said the new cards will be available for purchase on Sept. 20, and can be pre-ordered as of Monday. Prior to Monday, Nvidia sold its once-top-of-the-line GTX 1080 Ti gaming card for $699, according to the company’s website. Nvidia’s mid-range GTX 1070 sells for $449. But graphics-card prices have been inflated because they are also useful for mining cryptocurrency.
Nvidia also said Monday that upcoming videogame titles such as the Electronic Arts Inc. EA, -0.23% shooter “Battlefield V” and “Shadow of the Tomb Raider,” produced by Square Enix Holdings Co., will take advantage of the real-time ray tracing.
Nvidia stock closed up 1.2% to $247.83 after the company made the announcements Monday, as the S&P 500 index gained 0.3%. Nvidia stock was off 4.9% Friday, the day after the company reported earnings that included dropping cryptocurrency-related sales from its outlook altogether as well as logging substantially less cryptocurrency revenue that it had expected.
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