1080p. It almost seems like it’s a resolution starting to fade into obscurity, what with QHD, 4K, and even 5K and 6K screens entering the high-end mainstream. You can hardly find a new mid-to-high end notebook with a screen under 1440p. Yet, 1080p remains the most popular resolution among PC Gamers, according to the Steam Hardware Survey at least, and it probably will be for some time. So, of course, it behooves us to get familiar with a card that may be one of, if not the best options for 1080p gaming. This one.
This is the Geforce GTX 1050 Ti – specifically, the MSI Twin Frozr VI edition, factory overclocked and sporting a number of optimizations that push its performance a little above the standard GTX 1050, although there is no reference card for this GPU, so there’s not really a clear baseline to compare it to.
Taking a gander at some of the spec highlights, we’re looking at 768 CUDA cores, 4GB of GDDR5 memory, a 75W TDP, and a number of different values for base clock, boost clock, and memory clock speed based on which mode you’re running. Silent Mode is obviously the more power efficient mode, Gaming Mode is the standard configuration, and OC mode, which increases gaming performance along with higher power consumption. You can actually switch between these modes from your phone pretty easily if you install MSI’s mobile Gaming App. Now the card came in Gaming mode by default, and we didn’t change it for our benchmarks – Gaming mode’s clock speeds are actually still higher than the 1050 Ti’s “reference” speeds according to Nvidia. So when we get to those numbers, keep in mind that you could squeeze a bit more out of this card by switching to OC mode and / or actually overclocking it, even more, yourself – Overclock at your own risk.
Now unlike the previous Maxwell generation, which used the same GM206 GPU for the GTX 960, 950, and 950 Ti, the 1050 Ti gets its own specific GPU, the GP107, distinct from the GP106 found in the GTX 1060. And GP107 is actually made with a 14nm FinFET process, whereas the rest of the Pascal GPUs are built on 16nm. This allows Nvidia to clock the GTX 1050 and 1050 Ti a little lower, increasing its power efficiency while still outputting significant performance.
So what about that performance? Let’s jump right into it. We ran this card through our usual battery of game and synthetic benchmarks, and also compared its DirectX 11 and DirectX 12 performance where we could. All of our game benchmarks run at the default high settings, and for this card, we only ran them at 1080p, because, while you could conceivably run higher resolutions on the 1050 Ti, 1080p is really what it’s meant for as we discussed earlier. And do keep in mind, we did run these tests pretty early on, so new Nvidia drivers may have given a bit of a performance boost in the meantime. Now, GTA V, of course, has over 100 fps, as it has with most of the latest-gen cards from both AMD and Nvidia – in the rest of our titles, the 1050 Ti got just over 30 fps, with the exception of the Witcher 3 at 43 fps and around 55 fps in Rise of the Tomb Raider.
The DirectX 12 story is pretty similar to what we’ve seen so far with other cards – in Ashes, Rise of the Tomb Raider, and Deus Ex Mankind Divided, we actually got a slight dip in framerate, but it’s also small enough that that might just be standard variation. Synthetic benchmarks have this card coming in right between the RX 470 and RX 460. And that’s actually true of the price as well.
When we talk about these budget cards, right around the 100 to 200 dollar range, it always becomes a question of just that – your budget. The 1050 Ti has an MSRP of 139 US dollars, which is actually the same as the 4GB version of the Radeon RX 460, which it surpasses in performance in most cases. But of course, you’re most likely buying a custom card version, which could be anywhere from 140 to 220 US. At those higher end prices, you might be better off getting an RX 470 or even a GTX 1060. But if your budget is around 150ish, the GTX 1050 Ti is a solid option for getting consistently playable framerates at 1080p.
Alright, that’s it for this episode of Unpacked, thanks for watching guys. Click over here for the previous Unpacked, check us out on twitter over here. But as always, like the video, if you liked it, comment below for fans with benefits and subscribe for more videos like this from NCIX.