The graphics card market is still very choppy. Getting one at the official price marked by the manufacturer continues to be a feat, although, in recent weeks, the stock in some stores is a little more generous than it has been in recent months.
Given the circumstances, some users may be interested in betting on an entry-level solution at a relatively affordable price. This is precisely the league in which the graphics card we are about to analyze feels comfortable.
In the cover photo of this article, you can see that this solution has been assembled by Gigabyte. However, its true hallmark is its graphics processor, a GeForce RTX 3050 chip that currently represents an exciting gateway to the GeForce RTX 30 family.
This GPU has inherited the same microarchitecture from the higher models, but NVIDIA has trimmed some of its functional units to offer it at a more competitive price. In any case, it is essential to know if it is up to the task we are about to find out.
NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3050: technical specifications
The technologies implemented by NVIDIA in the GeForce RTX 3050 graphics processor are identical to those in the GeForce RTX 30 family GPUs we’ve reviewed so far, so the sections of this review where we look at the Ampere architecture and the impact that DLSS 2 technology has on image quality are the same as the articles we have dedicated to the other graphics cards.
We suggest you skip these sections if you have already read our reviews of these latest solutions and do not need to review what these innovations consist of. These are the most relevant improvements introduced by NVIDIA in the graphics cards of the GeForce RTX 30 family:
They integrate a significantly more significant number of CUDA cores. These cores are responsible for carrying out the complex calculations that a GPU faces to solve, among other tasks, general lighting, shading, removing jagged edges, or physics. These algorithms benefit from an architecture that prioritizes massive parallelism, so each new generation of NVIDIA graphics processors incorporates more CUDA cores.
They incorporate more RT (Ray Tracing) cores. These units are expressly responsible for assuming a large part of the calculation effort required by rendering images using ray tracing, freeing other functional units of the GPU that are incapable of carrying out this work from this stress. In such an efficient way. They are primarily responsible for the GeForce RTX 20 and 30 series graphics cards being able to offer us real-time ray tracing.
They also have more advanced Tensor cores. Like the RT cores, the Tensor cores are hardware functional units specialized in solving matrix operations that support high parallelization. Still, the latter has been expressly designed to efficiently execute the procedures required by deep learning algorithms and computation—high performance. Tensor cores play an essential role in the DLSS (Deep Learning Super Sampling) technology we will discuss throughout this analysis.
The GeForce RTX 30 family graphics cards implement Reflex technology, which seeks to reduce latency throughout the entire signal channel to minimize the time lapse that extends from the moment we give an order from our keyboard. or mouse until the instant it has an effect on the monitor. This innovation significantly reduces latency, especially when resolution is increased. If you want to know it in depth, do not miss the article in which we analyze it.
The new RTX IO technology allows the GPU to intervene in the decompression of the data stored in the secondary storage unit to reduce load times and relieve the CPU of most of the stress imposed by this task. Decompression algorithms can take advantage of the inherent parallelism of graphics processors.
According to its creators, the NVIDIA Broadcast application uses artificial intelligence to improve our experience when we talk through a video call or broadcast live content. Its three main functions are eliminating noise in the background, creating a virtual environment, and acting on the frame automatically.
These are the first NVIDIA graphics cards capable of communicating with the other components of our computers through a PCI Express 4.0 link. However, they work perfectly on a motherboard with PCI Express 3.0 buses.
The HDMI port of the GeForce RTX 30 implements the 2.1 standards. There is no doubt that this is excellent news because it will allow us to get more out of our PC when we connect it to a state-of-the-art television that also meets this standard. Welcome are the graphics with 4K UHD resolution and a variable image rate of up to 120 FPS (the panels of the most ambitious televisions work with a native refresh rate of 120 Hz).
In some of the innovations that we have just reviewed, we will investigate a little more depth in the section of the analysis that we will dedicate to the Ampere architecture, but to whet your appetite, here is the table that details the specifications of the GeForce RTX 3050 that we have analyzed to the background.
In the table, we have also included the characteristics of the GeForce RTX 3060 and RTX 3070 to contextualize what this NVIDIA graphics card offers.