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MSI’s 3GB GTX 1060 Range Offers Copious Options For Gamers On A Budget

Nvidia launched has launched an even more affordable Pascal GPU (3GB 1060) and MSI is definitely trying to capitalize on the budget market. The company previously launched six different editions of the 6GB GeForce GTX 1060 and well over a dozen GTX 1070 and GTX 1080 models, including a couple of watercooled cards. Now that the 3GB 1060 variant is available, MSI has doubled down and launched a cheaper counterpart for each of its various GTX 1060 models.

The GeForce GTX 1060 Gaming X 3G is the top of the stack. It features a Twin Frozer VI cooler with two Torx Fan 2.0 fans, RGB LED lighting and an included full-cover backplate, just like the flagship GTX 1080 Gaming X 8G. This card is built for performance and features an 8-pin power connector, 6-phase power delivery system, Military Class 4 components (passes MIL-STD-810G testing standards), 8mm copper heat pipes, and a nickel-plated copper baseplate.

MSI’s GTX 1060 Gaming X 3G comes from the factory with the GPU base clock overclocked to 1594 MHz and a rated boost clock of 1809 MHz. If the factory overclock isn’t important to you, but you still want the Twin Frozer VI cooler, MSI is also offering a GTX 1060 Gaming 3G, which doesn’t include the backplate (it’s an optional extra) and isn’t as aggressively overclocked.

If red and black aren’t your cup of tea, MSI has the Armor series, which features a black and white dual fan cooler. The Armor series doesn’t have a Twin Frozer cooler, but these cards to include two Torx Fans, which were developed for the Twin Frozer V. The Armor series is available with a reference clocked GPU and an overclocked version with an addition 38 MHz on the base clock.

MSI is also offering an entry level option for prospective GTX 1060 owners. The company gave us details about a dual fan card, which features military class components, dual 9cm fans, and “won’t break the bank.” The dual fan card features the same mild overclock as the Armor OC. MSI said there is a single fan option as well, but it didn’t provide any details about that model. We assume it operates at Nvidia’s reference clocks speeds.

The 3GB version of the GeForce GTX 1060 isn't quite the same GPU as the one found in the 6GB version. The GPU model is the same, but the one found in the 3GB cards is actually cut down slightly. Nvidia's specifications for the original GP106 GPU included 10 SMs and 1280 Cuda Cores. The cheaper alternative has one bank of SMs disabled for a total of 1152 Cuda Cores. It remains to be seen how much of an impact this difference will have in real-world gaming.

MSI did not provide pricing for its various 3GB GTX 1060 models, but judging from previous Pascal releases from the company, we expect the base model to come in at the $200 price point and scale up accordingly.

NameGeForce® GTX 1060 GAMING X 3GGeForce® GTX 1060 GAMING 3GGeForce® GTX 1060 ARMOR 3G OCV1GeForce® GTX 1060 ARMOR 3GV1GeForce® GTX 1060 3GT OC
GPUGP106-300GP106-300GP106-300GP106-300GPU GP106-300
Core Clock (OCMode) Base:1594 MHz1531 MHz1544 MHz1506 MHz1544 MHz
Core Clock (OCMode) Boost:1809 MHz1746 MHz1759 MHz1708 MHz1759 MHz
Memory Size / Type3GB GDDR53GB GDDR53GB GDDR53GB GDDR53GB GDDR5
Thermal DesignTWIN FROZR VITWIN FROZR VIARMOR 2XARMOR 2XDUAL FAN
BackplateYesOptionalNoNoNo
LEDYes (RGB)Yes (RGB)Yes (RGB)Yes (RGB)No
ConnectivityDisplayPort x 3 / HDMI / DL-DVI-DDisplayPort x 3 / HDMI / DL-DVI-DDisplayPort x 2 / HDMI x 2 / DL-DVI-DDisplayPort x 2 / HDMI x 2 / DL-DVI-DDisplayPort / HDMI / DL-DVI-D
Dimensions277 x 140 x 39 mm277 x 140 x 39 mm277 x 140 x 39 mm277 x 140 x 39 mm243 x 115 x 39 mm
  • spentshells
    I was interested until it was further chopped down past the simple memory change.
    Reply
  • turkey3_scratch
    Military components. Gave me a good laugh.
    Reply
  • kcarbotte
    18459722 said:
    I was interested until it was further chopped down past the simple memory change.

    Nvidia needs to do something with all the chips that don't quite perform up to par.
    disabling components of a GPU to offset losses from bad yields is common practice and has been done for generations.
    Reply
  • spentshells
    18459783 said:
    18459722 said:
    I was interested until it was further chopped down past the simple memory change.

    Nvidia needs to do something with all the chips that don't quite perform up to par.
    disabling components of a GPU to offset losses from bad yields is common practice and has been done for generations.

    I agree fully that those chips need to be sold in that fashion,, but since that's the case you can't call it a 1060 because its not. It needs further indication like LE SE as they have done in the past.

    What they are advertising is 1060 with 3GB of memory... but it actually doesn't meet the 1060 specs, it is misleading.
    Reply
  • turkey3_scratch
    18459996 said:
    18459783 said:
    18459722 said:
    I was interested until it was further chopped down past the simple memory change.

    Nvidia needs to do something with all the chips that don't quite perform up to par.
    disabling components of a GPU to offset losses from bad yields is common practice and has been done for generations.

    I agree fully that those chips need to be sold in that fashion,, but since that's the case you can't call it a 1060 because its not. It needs further indication like LE SE as they have done in the past.

    What they are advertising is 1060 with 3GB of memory... but it actually doesn't meet the 1060 specs, it is misleading.

    Well that's the whole purpose, to mislead uninformed shoppers into purchasing it.
    Reply
  • wifiburger
    you know budget doesn't mean 3gb of memory, what is this 2010
    Reply
  • spentshells
    18460003 said:
    18459996 said:
    18459783 said:
    18459722 said:
    I was interested until it was further chopped down past the simple memory change.

    Nvidia needs to do something with all the chips that don't quite perform up to par.
    disabling components of a GPU to offset losses from bad yields is common practice and has been done for generations.

    I agree fully that those chips need to be sold in that fashion,, but since that's the case you can't call it a 1060 because its not. It needs further indication like LE SE as they have done in the past.

    What they are advertising is 1060 with 3GB of memory... but it actually doesn't meet the 1060 specs, it is misleading.

    Well that's the whole purpose, to mislead uninformed shoppers into purchasing it.

    Agreed but in the past that wasnt th case a la se or 192 as they did with the 460
    Reply
  • turkey3_scratch
    Nvidia's marketing gets better all the time.
    Reply
  • George Phillips
    Wow,, all the cooling solutions are super robust and over kill. These cards are going to run extremely cool even under load and overclocking.
    Reply
  • MisterMayhem
    It should have been called 1050 >.<
    Reply