Much to the chagrin of PC gamers around the world, both NVIDIA and AMD currently have large gaps in their GPU range as component shortages and price increases continue to bite commercial and consumer sectors, a consequence of exceptionally high demand and crippling component shortages. NVIDIA, however, appear to be trying to address this problem head-on by repurposing an old GPU design and, potentially, reintroducing a more affordable graphics card option below the GeForce RTX 3060.
Via Videocardz.com comes news that a new 12GB variant of the veteran GeForce RTX 2060 graphics card may soon be arriving in stores and through system integrators this December. Rumours of that SKU aren't exactly new, but now it seems that the spec will be a little more hardy than previously understood.
Rather than basing the core design on the original RTX 2060, NVIDIA are apparently repurposing some specifications from its July 2019 refresh, the RTX 2060 SUPER. This 12nm Turing TU106 GPU was meaningfully more meaty than its predecessor, featuring 2176 CUDA cores with ~7% higher Base and Boost operating frequencies. Both however featured just 6GB of GDDR6 memory, an amount that is looking a little sparse at the top end of today's gaming environment.
While the RTX 2060 SUPER was phased out over time, the RTX 2060 got a new lease on life in 2020 with a TU104-based variant. Small amounts of stock have continued to be drip-fed into consumer channels, but the impression was very much of a stop-gap measure.
The GeForce RTX 2060 12GB will therefore be something of a hybrid design. It will utilise a TU106 GPU with the full 2176 CUDA Cores unlocked (same as the RTX 2060 SUPER) and 12GB of GDDR6, but have the narrower 192-bit memory bus width of the RTX 2060 non-SUPER. Clock speeds should match those of the RTX 2060 SUPER, but TDP and MSRP are expected to be a little higher.
Videocardz anticipate that the SKU will be launched on December 7th. It seems likely that NVIDIA will want to prioritise system integrators as we enter the Holiday sales period, but the exact availability and price in consumer channels are currently unknown.