We do not suggest marking your calendar in permanent ink, but you can at least bust out a No. 2 pencil and circle March 22-26. That is when NVIDIA's GPU Technology Conference runs, and there is sure to be an interesting announcement or two. The question is, will NVIDIA actually introduce its Ampere GPU during the event?
The folks at WCCFTech say they have been informed by a "new" source who has "proven to be right at least once in the past" that it's going to happen. This mystery source did not provide any other details, such as specs and what graphics card models could be on tap, only that Ampere will make a formal introduction in at GTC 2020. However, this is the not the first time a GTC 2020 unveiling has been rumored.
What We Know About NVIDIA's Next-Generation Ampere GPU
While the unnamed source may have been light on details, the internet at large has been a bit more forthcoming, though obviously none of the information that's out there at this point is official. That said, it is widely expected Ampere will be introduced as NVIDIA's first GPU to be built on a 7-nanometer manufacturing process.
NVIDIA's Ampere GPU Could Deliver A Big Performance Uplift At Half The Power
What will be interesting to see is what kind of performance uplift Ampere brings to ray-traced workloads. In many cases, there is a pretty big performance penalty when enabling RTX on current generation cards. NVIDIA can attack this through both architectural improvements, and by brute force (jamming more RT cores into the equation).
Brace Yourself For A Potential Rise In Graphics Card Pricing This Year
"Graphics DRAM prices will see a corresponding sharp rebound. Graphics DRAM is more sensitive to demand change than other types of memory products, so its price fluctuations can be dramatic as well. With OEM clients raising their stock-up demand, Graphics DRAM contract prices are projected to increase by over 5 percent QoQ, the highest among all memory products," TrendForce analyst Arvil Wu says.
In addition, next-generation PlayStation 5 and Xbox Series X game consoles will launch towards the end of the year, and both of those will make the jump from GDDR5 to GDDR6 memory. In part of because of this, Wu says "demand is expected to exceed supply for graphics DRAM in 2020."
Market research firms have a tendency to take a 'sky is falling' approach when it comes predictions, so let's not hit the panic button. Here's hoping that even if graphics DRAM prices rise, increased competition from AMD will help offset some of the blow back on consumers when all these new GPUs arrive.