Nvidia has announced that its entry-level RTX 3060 graphics card will go on sale on Thursday, February 25, confirming an earlier rumor. Nvidia also revealed that there are no plans for a Founder’s Edition reference card this time around.
While the 3060 is undoubtedly the budget option in the RTX 30 range, it is certainly not far behind. Although it has fewer CUDA cores than the 3060 Ti (3584 compared to 4864) and a lower bandwidth 192-bit memory interface, it comes with an additional 4GB GDDR6 video memory to compensate, giving you a total 12 GB.
We’ll have to wait for the official benchmarks to see how this affects real-world performance, but suffice to say, this will still be a huge improvement for anyone coming off a GTX 1060 or even an RTX 2060.
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Anyone itching for a day one RTX 3060 should be ready to log in at 9am PT or 12pm ET when Nvidia says the cards will officially launch. Although if recent GPU history is anything to go by, just being ready with a web browser will not guarantee success. Demand for Nvidia’s previous RTX 30 cards has vastly outstripped supply, and it would be extremely surprising if that weren’t the case here, especially with the RTX 3060 starting at a very competitive $ 329.
While the demand for a weaker card might be less than the mad rush of the RTX 3080s, if enough Bitcoin miners and scalper bots are put off, it may not be low enough for the average buyer to notice the difference. . After all, the competition for new graphics cards has been so fierce that this week Nvidia decided to reactivate production of the RTX 2060 and GTX 1050 Ti, a mid-range card that first debuted in 2016.
Anyone hoping for a quick end to this shortage appears to be disappointed as well. Last week, the European retailer Alternate published a statement on its website saying that the supply of GPUs for the RTX 30 series will worsen in the first quarter of 2021 due to both the shortage of raw materials and the Chinese New Year celebrations, resulting in temporary factory closures.
We track retailers and flag RTX 30 units when we detect availability. Be sure to keep an eye on where to buy Pages 3060 Ti, 3070, and 3080 if you’re still looking for one.