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Nvidia introduces GTX 1080 Ti with 11GB of video memory at $699, pre-orders available March 2

Why it matters to you

The popular GTX 1080 is now more affordable, and the GTX 1080 Ti pushes the limit of high-end video cards.

Nvidia started its GDC 2017 conference with a bang, immediately dropping the price of the GTX 1080 to $499. That represents a price cut of about $100 compared to what a basic GTX 1080 sold for prior to the show.

But that, of course, wasn’t all. After a brief lull, the company trotted out the expected and much anticipated GTX 1080 Ti. Its primary specifications include 3,584 CUDA cores clocked at 1,582MHz, paired with an unusual 11GB of GDDR5 video memory. That’s up from the GTX 1080’s 2,560 CUDA cores, and 8GB of video memory. Compared to rumors, the GTX 1080 Ti has even more CUDA Cores than most anticipated, but slightly less memory, since estimates had focused on 12GB. Overall, Nvidia says that the GTX 1080 Ti will be 35 percent faster than the GTX 1080, and faster than a Titan X.

The price? $699. The availability? Next week – in other words, the week beginning March 6. You can pre-order the video card from Nvidia starting tomorrow, March 2, at 8 a.m. Pacific Time.

More: AMD announces name for Vega-based video cards at GDC 2017

That’s great for gamers, but GDC 2017 isn’t necessarily about gamers – it’s about game developers. As such, Nvidia CEO Jen-Hsun Huang jumped to topics pressing to them. He began by revealing that Nvidia Gameworks, the company’s suite of tools designed to help developers optimize their games, has made the jump to DirectX 12. The announcement didn’t receive much applause, perhaps because DX12 isn’t all that new anymore, but it’s a much-needed enhancement.

Perhaps more exciting, though, was Nvidia’s demonstration of real-time, simulated fluid dynamics and gas dynamics in Unreal Engine 4. There, the company boasted an impressive simulation of a fire from a gas main which interacted realistically, and dynamically, with bullets fired through it. Even the smoke cast a shadow in real-time, not only behind the flame, but within the smoke itself. The result was an eye-catching demo. And Nvidia, of course, insists that its high-end hardware is the best way to see this result.

More: How to build the perfect budget gaming PC

Nvidia’s announcement of the GTX 1080 Ti is no surprise, but the price is of $699 is definitely a bit lower than some had anticipated. It is, after all, less than $100 more than the average price of a regular GTX 1080 — before the just-announced price drop. This announcement is sure to please fans of the green team.