Even with consoles that repeat a regular cadence, PC hardware has found ways to stay ahead. This is typically due to innovations that change the way computer graphics work, and this is happening right now with Nvidia’s next wave of GeForce RTX GPUs. The RTX 3070, 3080 and 3090 use Micron’s new GDDR6X memory. This is a step above the traditional GDDR6 VRAM, and it may represent a generational shift forward in system bandwidth performance thanks to Micron’s PAM4 technology.
Pulse amplitude modulation (PAM4) is the name given to pushing 2 bits of data over a connection instead of 1 bit. It’s a technical concept, but in essence this enables the system to call from 4 potential states instead of 2 with each burst of information. With PAM4, Micron and Nvidia promise a significant boost to I / O data speeds and bandwidth. GDDR6X is also more power efficient. At 21
Micron claims that the GDDR6X’s per-pin data rate of 21Gb / s, when you combine all these pins and memory modules on something like the RTX 3090, the GPU has a total memory bandwidth of 936GB / s. It’s massive. In comparison, the memory bandwidth of the Xbox Series X was reduced by 560 GB / s, and the PS5 is 448 GB / s.
Simply put, this means that the GPU can pull a huge amount of data from memory in an instant. And that will lead to better games.
“[Gamers] take advantage of increased system data speeds, ”said Micron graphics manager Ralf Ebert in a media presentation. “It increases the data transferred between the GPU and the memory interface. We believe in enabling 8K resolutions and getting closer to real-time beam tracking. ”
What it really means is that GPUs finally have enough bandwidth to comfortably handle 4K. In a world where even the $ 1,200 RTX 2080 Ti is struggling to hit 60 frames per second at 4K, the GDDR6X is crucial in getting us past this barrier.