1080 Ti

Yes, 4K gaming is here. How good is it with NVIDIA's GTX 1080 Ti graphics chip?

While the upcoming Xbox One X is promising 4K gaming at up to 60 frames per second (FPS), in the PC world you need some serious hardware to achieve that standard. Particularly if you want to enjoy your games with some of the graphics detail settings turned up.

The GPU, or graphics chip, is a critical component in getting to this mark, and if it's 4K you really want we recommend NVIDIA's powerhouse GTX 1080 Ti. NVIDIA once claimed of its predecessor that it had "irresponsible levels of power," and that's even truer with the GTX 1080 Ti.

We already examined the performance at 1440p, so now we're upping the ante and going 4K.

The card used in this was a Zotac reference design card with a blower style cooler and no factory overclock. The rest of the PC contains an Intel Core i7 6700 and 32GB of RAM.

Let's look at some numbers and how they compare to their counterparts at 1440p. For the sake of consistency, these benchmarks were all run with graphics on their highest settings. The display used was an LG webOS 4K TV with a 60Hz refresh rate.

NVIDIA GTX 1080 Ti benchmarks

Game GTX 1080 Ti (4K) GTX 1080 Ti (1440p)
Gears of War 4 50.6 FPS average 109.1 FPS average
Rise of the Tomb Raider 60.04 FPS average 113.1 FPSaverage
GTA V 60.1 FPS average 73.7 FPS average
PUBG 34 FPS average 68.9 FPS average

Additionally, Microsoft's Forza Horizon 3 is able to deliver an average around 75 FPS at 4K with all the graphics settings turned up. And it looks incredible. If you needed any further reason to play Forza Motorsport 7 on the PC, this is it. It's also worth pointing out that while running Forza Horizon 3 and Gears 4, both DX12 titles, the PC was noticeably quieter.

This is only a very small sample, but it shows that 4K gaming is very much here and that magic 60-FPS number is pretty easily achievable. Rise of the Tomb Raider may be a couple of years old, but it's still very demanding at its highest levels. PUBG is still a work in progress, but it's insanely popular, hence including it, but don't play it at 4K if you actually want to win. And GTA V is pretty CPU intensive, so it has been consistently lower than the other games.

4K60 gaming is well and truly here.

Still, three of these can easily be played at 60 FPS on the GTX 1080 Ti. One is in Early Access on Steam so it gets a pass for now.

You might not hit 60 FPS at max settings on every title, but it's going to be fairly easy to achieve across the board in current games. You'll have to compromise somewhere along the line, but not by much. Games at 4K on a big screen look amazing, but the caveat is that you'll be limited to 60Hz with most displays right now. Whether more pixels are better than a 1440p display with a 144Hz refresh rate is up to you. But I know which way I'm leaning. In some cases, you're losing as much as 60 FPS by going up to 4K just in our quick tests. And that's a lot.

But if you want to game at 4K with the fewest compromises, you also want a GTX 1080 Ti.

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