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NVIDIA RTX 2060 Super vs. RTX 2060: Which is better for your gaming needs?

MSI RTX 2060
MSI RTX 2060 (Image credit: Windows Central)

These two graphics cards (GPU) are quite similar in price, though the newer RTX 2060 Super is going to outperform its sibling RTX 2060 while drawing more power. Let's take a look at the specs that make up these cards. Note that we're using MSI's Ventus OC line to compare. These are great mid-range cards that have proven to run quiet and cool. Looking for truly high-end performance? Check out far more options in our roundup of the best graphics card picks right now.

NVIDIA RTX 2060 Super vs. RTX 2060 tech specs

NVIDIA RTX 2060 SuperRTX 2060
CUDA cores2,1761,920
Boost speed1,665MHz1,710MHz
VRAM8GB GDDR66GB GDDR6
Memory bus256-bit192-bit
Memory speed14Gbps14Gbps
Power175W160W
Ray tracingYesYes
DLSSYesYes
PortsThree DisplayPort
One HDMI
Three DisplayPort
One HDMI

What features do these GPUs share?

NVIDIA RTX

Source: NVIDIA (Image credit: Source: NVIDIA)

Both of these NVIDIA GPUs are built with Turing architecture and are using the new RTX platform, which means you get a lot of the same features, whether you choose the RTX 2060 or RTX 2060 Super. Ray tracing and Deep Learning Super Sampling (DLSS) are chief among these features.

Ray tracing replaces the traditional way lighting and shadows were created with polygons and rasterization. These GPUs can instead simulate and trace light in a scene in a far more natural way, making games look a lot more realistic. This technology does take a significant amount of power, and most games with ray tracing as an option will see a significant frames-per-second (FPS) dip when enabled.

DLSS helps RTX GPUs raise framerates in, particularly intensive games by using AI learning to super-sample future frames. This generates anti-aliased frames, which are again fed to the AI to have pixels added, upping the resolution. When you see the frame on your monitor, it's going to look a lot better than it would without DLSS, especially in cases where your GPU is working as hard as it can and not seeing high framerates.

How big is the performance difference?

The standard NVIDIA RTX 2060 is an excellent GPU if you're looking to game at 1080p or 1440p. It's capable of pushing 100FPS in most modern games at the higher resolution and without having to resort to low in-game settings. If you're gaming at 1080p, it'll prove to be quite able in terms of framerates. Here are some numbers from the MSI Ventus RTX 2060 combined with 16GB of RAM and an AMD Ryzen 5 2600 processor.

GameResolutionGraphicsAverage FPS
Call of Duty: Modern Warfare1440pHigh102.3 FPS
Metro Exodus1440pMedium85.3 FPS
Battlefield V1440pMedium104 FPS
Tom Clancy's The Division 21440pHigh96.9 FPS
Apex Legends1440pHigh123.4 FPS

Those aren't bad numbers, especially considering the modest price. However, for only about $40 more in most cases, you can instead invest in an RTX 2060 Super. It's still not going to deliver the fantastic performance from something like the RTX 2070 Super or RTX 2080 Super, but it'll add about 10-20FPS more in most games compared to the standard RTX 2060. That's a significant upgrade, and if you can save afford it, the RTX 2060 Super should no doubt be your first pick.

If you're building a budget rig or for some reason can't get your hands on the Super, the standard RTX 2060 is still a good pick that brings a lot of the same features. And if you're already the owner of an RTX 2060 and are thinking about upgrading, it's worth going above the 2060 Super to get your hands on something with a lot more power. The jump from a standard RTX 2060 to a Super is no doubt not really worth the money.

The RTX 2060 Super is the right buy for most people

Thanks to better performance and not a big jump in price, anyone building a new gaming PC should first consider the RTX 2060 Super over the standard RTX 2060.

The RTX 2060 is still a good GPU

The Super version might overshadow the RTX 2060, but it's still a good performer at 1080p and 1440p. If you can't get your hands on a Super or can't justify the extra cost, it'll still make a good fit your a mid-range gaming PC.

Cale Hunt
Cale Hunt

Cale Hunt is a Senior Editor at Windows Central. He focuses mainly on laptop reviews, news, and accessory coverage. He's been reviewing laptops and accessories full time since 2016, with hundreds of reviews published for Windows Central. He is an avid PC gamer and multi-platform user, and spends most of his time either tinkering with or writing about tech.