Monday, July 4th 2016

NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1060 Doesn't Support SLI? Reference PCB Difficult to Mod

Here are some more technical pictures of NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1060 reference-design board, which reveals quite a few features about the card. The biggest revelation is that the card completely lacks SLI bridge fingers. We wonder if NVIDIA has innovated a bridge-less SLI for this card, although we find it unlikely given the amount of efforts the company put into marketing the SLI HB bridge, and the reason SLI needs a bridge in the first place. Meanwhile, the Radeon RX 480 supports 4-way CrossFireX.

Next up, the PCB is shorter than the card itself, and NVIDIA's unique new reference-cooler makes the card about 50% longer than its PCB. NVIDIA listened to feedback about shorter PCBs pushing power connectors towards the middle of the cards; and innovated a unique design, in which the card's sole 6-pin PCIe power connector is located where you want it (towards the end), and internal high-current wires are soldered to the PCB. Neato? Think again. What if you want to change the cooler, or maybe use a water-block? Prepare to deal with six insulated wires sticking out of somewhere in the PCB, and running into that PCIe power receptacle. The rear PCB shot also seems to confirm the 192-bit memory bus, given how some memory chip pads are blanked out by lacking SMT components needed by the memory chip.
Source: PurePC.pl
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83 Comments on NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1060 Doesn't Support SLI? Reference PCB Difficult to Mod

#2
Auryx
Oh dear god, I'm not a fan of SLI/CROSSFIRE but even so, they should offer this to people who are, and also what is up with that power connector, mounting any aftermarket cooling system now will prove troublesome...

Such a shame. :(
Posted on Reply
#3
NC37
Well the 480 is pretty subpar even when it has Crossfire, but for a 60 series to not have SLI...That could be a deal breaker for some.

nVidia seems to love to find ways to devalue the 60 series. If cutting it's memory bus wasn't enough, now it loses SLI capabilities.

Does send a bit of a message to midrange and under...if you don't have 1070 or better, you do have squat.

Nows the time for AMD to pull out the 8 pin 480 that clocks like they hyped the 480 up to be.
Posted on Reply
#4
Dethroy
According to this leak, only the 3GB GTX 1060 will not support SLI.
Posted on Reply
#5
the54thvoid
There are various rumours suggesting two variants with 3 and 6GB of VRam. The 3GB variant isn't sli capable but the 6GB version is.
As for the power connector, it's inventive and only an issue if the the cards cooler isn't very good (which would be a big whoops).
AIB's will no doubt release custom PCB's so it's no big deal. Same as the advice on the RX480, if you need a better cooler, buy a custom variant.

I guess we'll see in a few days.
Posted on Reply
#6
Mussels
Moderprator
this might be an amazing card, but no SLI from a premium product (This is NOT entry level) and potentially loose wires.... when was the last time soldered wires was acceptable on a video card? that instantly makes me think of someone making something at home or dodgy voltmods.
Posted on Reply
#7
cryohellinc
Odd not to see SLI support. Maybe reference only and custom designs will feature it?

However if there will be no SLI support for 1060 at all, I see it as a big fail if they wanted to compete using 1060 versus AMD's 480, besides 1060 was so rushed for that reason. 480 with all its flaws will have a clear advantage there as people WILL most likely go for 2+ card solutions.
Posted on Reply
#8
Zeki
In my opinion, SLI is useless. I am glad they are finally admitting it and putting 3/4 way aside. Anyone with a g-sync monitor knows that in general SLI stutters more than a single card.
Posted on Reply
#9
Uvo
Source: PCLab? No, no, and one more time NO! PurePC. Or right now I'm on Tom's Hardware, not TPU ;P
Posted on Reply
#10
Naito
Don't know why you make a big deal out of the PCIe power connector. What's the difference between having it soldered to the board and having it extended off the board with wires? You still have to run power to it in either scenario. Besides, it's probably unique to the reference SKUs anyway.
Posted on Reply
#11
john_
No SLI. Well Nvidia is limiting SLI as years go buy. 10 years ago you could do SLi with little cards like 9500GT.

Anyway.... so....
GTX 1080 is faster than 2 GTX 980s.
One GTX 1060 is as fast if not faster than a GTX 980, so two GTX 1060 are equal with GTX 1080(at least where SLI is working)

If a GTX 1060 was costing $300, NVidia wouldn't care. But if it was costing $250, many would prefer a duo of 1060's over an overpriced and difficult to find more expensive GTX 1080.

I think 1060 is coming at $250. At least the 3GB version if the 6GB does come with an SLI. If it comes I would say $300 for the 6GB version. If we are looking at a 6GB version with no SLI, then the 6GB could come at $250.
Posted on Reply
#12
dorsetknob
"YOUR RMA REQUEST IS CON-REFUSED"
Might be lack of PCI lanes on Skylake is an influence on this decision ????
Posted on Reply
#13
btarunr
Editor & Senior Moderator
dorsetknob, post: 3483470, member: 8331"
Might be lack of PCI lanes on Skylake is an influence on this decision ????
Skylake has enough lanes for 2-way SLI.
Posted on Reply
#14
ZoneDymo
Dethroy, post: 3483453, member: 111447"
According to this leak, only the 3GB GTX 1060 will not support SLI.
Hmm guess thats not too bad then, a card like this needs SLI really, get one now and get one in a year or 2 for extra performance.

On the power connector, yeah its a bit of unneeded thing to put it on the end but like with RX480's (6pin v 8pin story) im sure partners can do what they want with that.
So only if you get the founders edition should you be prepared not to switch the cooler (Or get creative with the soldering iron?)
Posted on Reply
#16
dorsetknob
"YOUR RMA REQUEST IS CON-REFUSED"
btarunr, post: 3483473, member: 43587"
Skylake has enough lanes for 2-way SLI.
Support for 16 PCI Express 3.0 lanes from CPU, 20 PCI Express 3.0 lanes from PCH (LGA 1151)

So this is a PCI 16x ver 3 card and to run 2 Cards in SLI to at their FULL potential your Need more lanes

OR you gimp potential performance by running them at PCI 8 ver 3
Posted on Reply
#17
the54thvoid
john_, post: 3483469, member: 137560"
No SLI. Well Nvidia is limiting SLI as years go buy. 10 years ago you could do SLi with little cards like 9500GT.

Anyway.... so....
GTX 1080 is faster than 2 GTX 980s.
One GTX 1060 is as fast if not faster than a GTX 980, so two GTX 1060 are equal with GTX 1080(at least where SLI is working)

If a GTX 1060 was costing $300, NVidia wouldn't care. But if it was costing $250, many would prefer a duo of 1060's over an overpriced and difficult to find more expensive GTX 1080.

I think 1060 is coming at $250. At least the 3GB version if the 6GB does come with an SLI. If it comes I would say $300 for the 6GB version. If we are looking at a 6GB version with no SLI, then the 6GB could come at $250.
That's the suspicion.

ZoneDymo, post: 3483479, member: 66089"
Hmm guess thats not too bad then, a card like this needs SLI really, get one now and get one in a year or 2 for extra performance.

On the power connector, yeah its a bit of unneeded thing to put it on the end but like with RX480's (6pin v 8pin story) im sure partners can do what they want with that.
So only if you get the founders edition should you be prepared not to switch the cooler (Or get creative with the soldering iron?)
Often touted as an option but I'm not sure how many people actually do that. Every 2 years the better option is to upgrade the card to the same 'level', not buy an outdated and more than likely EOL product.

Besides the scaling on dual solutions isn't preferable to a single better card.
Posted on Reply
#18
PP Mguire
dorsetknob, post: 3483481, member: 8331"
Support for 16 PCI Express 3.0 lanes from CPU, 20 PCI Express 3.0 lanes from PCH (LGA 1151)

So this is a PCI 16x ver 3 card and to run 2 Cards in SLI to at their FULL potential your Need more lanes

OR you gimp potential performance by running them at PCI 8 ver 3
A card like this is nowhere near close to being bottlenecked by an 8x 3.0 bus.
Posted on Reply
#19
GC_PaNzerFIN
In the past, SLi on low end cards was possible without SLi bridge. I am wondering if something like that is done here. There is plenty of PCI-E bandwidth to use.
Posted on Reply
#20
jabbadap
btarunr, post: 3483445, member: 43587"
Here are some more technical pictures of NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1060 reference-design board, which reveals quite a few features about the card. The biggest revelation is that the card completely lacks SLI bridge fingers. We wonder if NVIDIA has innovated a bridge-less SLI for this card, although we find it unlikely given the amount of efforts the company put into marketing the SLI HB bridge, and the reason SLI needs a bridge in the first place. Meanwhile, the Radeon RX 480 supports 4-way CrossFireX.

Next up, the PCB is shorter than the card itself, and NVIDIA's unique new reference-cooler makes the card about 50% longer than its PCB. NVIDIA listened to feedback about shorter PCBs pushing power connectors towards the middle of the cards; and innovated a unique design, in which the card's sole 6-pin PCIe power connector is located where you want it (towards the end), and internal high-current wires are soldered to the PCB. Neato? Think again. What if you want to change the cooler, or maybe use a water-block? Prepare to deal with six insulated wires sticking out of somewhere in the PCB, and running into that PCIe power receptacle.

The rear PCB shot also seems to confirm the 192-bit memory bus, given how some memory chip pads are blanked out by lacking SMT components needed by the memory chip.




Source: PurePC.pl

Am I blind or what, but I count 8 empty memory chip slot(->256bit). Not 6 as it should with 192bit bus.
Posted on Reply
#21
GC_PaNzerFIN
jabbadap, post: 3483494, member: 148195"
Am I blind or what, but I count 8 empty memory chip slot(->256bit). Not 6 as it should with 192bit bus.
6 chips have SMD components populated on the backside of IC. Two chips have those components unpopulated. Memory chips are on the other side of the PCB.
Posted on Reply
#22
jabbadap
GC_PaNzerFIN, post: 3483496, member: 76628"
6 chips have SMD components populated on the backside of IC. Two chips have those components unpopulated. Memory chips are on the other side of the PCB.
Yeah so 6 memory chips connected on 192bit bus on the other side of pcb. But Why it have eight slots, that would need 256bit bus?
Posted on Reply
#23
RejZoR
Design decisions are a bit odd. Wouldn't it be more elegant if the card had 6pin at the end of PCB with extention 6pin cable to the end of the plastic cooler housing? This way, you can take off the reference cooler and just decouple the extension and get a 6pin out of it directly. Sure it would cost a bit more, but would be a really elegant solution. My guess is NVIDIA is chasing RX480 price and they are cutting corners to achieve that. Just the same as RX480. Cutting away SLi support, cutting bus width down to 192bit and soldering power connector wires are things that would indicate that. After all, NVIDIA has been aware of RX480 pricing scheme for quite a while, so they were preparing for it I'm certain of that.

Pairing cards will certainly be a selling point for AMD and we'll have to wait and see if 192bit bus will be a problem. If you ask me, RX480 and GTX 1060 will be trading blows, one will be good at certain things and other and some others. Lets wait reviews and see.
Posted on Reply
#24
iO
It doesnt make sense to design an additional bridge less PCB just for the 3 GB card. So they simply scrapped SLi support for all SKUs below GP104..
Posted on Reply
#25
GC_PaNzerFIN
jabbadap, post: 3483499, member: 148195"
Yeah so 6 memory chips connected on 192bit bus on the other side of pcb. But Why it have eight slots, that would need 256bit bus?
If GP106 has 256-bit memory bus, it makes sense to do PCB which supports it. My guess is they saw how RX 480 performed and decided 192bit is enough.
Posted on Reply
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