Nvidia’s Breakthrough Gaming Speeds Become Faster Powered By Micron

Micron Technology announced the world’s fastest discrete graphics memory solution, GDDR6X, the first to power system bandwidth up to 1 terabyte per second (TB/s). Working with visual computing technology leader NVIDIA, Micron debuted GDDR6X in the new NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3090 and GeForce RTX 3080 graphics processing units (GPUs), which are tailored to support the fast speeds that immersive, high-performance gaming applications demand. 

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“Our multilevel signaling innovation in GDDR6X has shattered conventional bandwidth limits, clocking record-breaking speeds,” said Tom Eby, senior vice president and general manager of the Compute & Networking Business Unit at Micron. “Unlike traditional memory, GDDR6X has unparalleled data rates that can keep pace with gaming innovation and data-hungry applications — setting a new standard for graphics memory.”

The Micron GDDR6X memory brings a lot of new stuff to the table. It is faster, doubles the I/O data rate, and is the first to implement PAM4 multi-level signalling in memory dies. With the Geforce RTX 3090 class products, Micron’s GDDR6X memory achieves a bandwidth of up to 1 TB/s which is used to power the next-generation gaming experiences at high-fidelity resolutions such as 8K.

“With the unprecedented speed of GDDR6X, Micron has delivered tomorrow’s memory technology today, and it’s at the heart of NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3090 and 3080 GPUs — helping us deliver rich, realistic, cinematic user experiences,” said Jeff Fisher, senior vice president of the GPU Business Unit at NVIDIA. “Building on a history of collaboration that started with GDDR5, we’re thrilled to have reinvented the memory/GPU interface with Micron, setting a new bar for high-performance, high-resolution gaming.”

What it mostly boils down to is the adoption of four-level pulse amplitude modulation (PAM4), a multi-signalling technology that’s been around for several years and used in areas like high-end networking (think: 200 and 400 gigabit Ethernet solutions).

The adoption of PAM4 effectively doubles the number of signal states in the GDDR6X memory bus. Whereas traditional GDDR6 memory relies on two signal levels to transmit data as ones or zeroes, with graphics memory capped at 64GB/s, PAM4 uses four distinct levels to transmit two bits of data to and from the memory at the same time.

Availability 

The GeForce RTX 3080 is available for purchase starting Sept. 17, and the GeForce RTX 3090 is available starting Sept. 24 on Nvidia’s website. Both will be available as custom boards, including stock-clocked and factory-overclocked models from top add-in card providers and in gaming systems from leading OEMs and system builders. 

GDDR6X is now available as part of Micron’s new Ultra-Bandwidth Solutions portfolio. Micron delivers GDDR6X memory in 8 gigabits (Gb) density, with speeds of 19 to 21 Gb/s. Starting in 2021, 16Gb density units will be added. 

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