GIGABYTE AORUS GeForce RTX 3060 Ti ELITE 8G Video Card Review

Introduction

For consideration today is one of the two premium offerings in GIGABYTE’s RTX 3060 Ti stack. The video card we are reviewing is the GIGABYTE AORUS GeForce RTX 3060 Ti ELITE 8G Video Card (GV-N306TAORUS E-8GD) revision 2.0. The Aorus branding is the best you can get from GIGABYTE with a master and elite edition.

The GeForce RTX 3060 Ti video card was released in December 2020 with an MSRP of the Founder’s Edition at $399.  The GIGABYTE AORUS GeForce RTX 3060 Ti ELITE 8G is available on Amazon and Newegg for $489.99 currently.

So what makes this Elite?  The video card is massive, it features triple fan cooling with the center fan spinning opposite the other two, a 5-heat pipe direct contact heatsink, a full metal backplate, and “neonpunk” RGB.  In addition, there is a dual BIOS, GIGABYTE’s ultradurable PCB, and high-grade components.

To make it even more Elite, the GPU arrives out of the box with a Boost clock of 1785MHz which is 375MHz beyond the default clock and 120MHz over the factory Boost clock. Finally, GIGABYTE will warranty your Elite for 4 years if you register it at purchase. 

GeForce RTX 3060 Ti Specifications

Briefly, the GIGABYTE AORUS GeForce RTX 3060 Ti ELITE is based on the NVIDIA Ampere architecture.  It features 4864 CUDA cores, 152 texture mapping units, and 80 ROPs.  There are 152 tensor cores and 38 ray tracing cores. Memory is 8GB GDDR 6 on a 256bit bus at 1750MHz. (448GB/sec) The factory-assigned base GPU clock is 1410MHz. The ELITE is listed at a 200Watt power draw.  GIGABYTE recommends a 650 Watt PSU minimum.  The board has two PCIe connectors, one 8 and one 6-pin.

GIGABYTE AORUS GeForce RTX 3060 Ti ELITE 8G

This is a crowded field.  GIGABYTE offers no fewer than 11 video cards in the 3060 Ti stack.  It’s more if you consider 9 revisions.  That said, there are 4 basic model offerings: AORUS (premium), GAMING, VISION, and the two fan variety EAGLE. The variations are in size, style, fan type, RGB, and clock frequencies.

(please excuse the white card on the box front, it’s covering a label that simply can’t be removed.)

GIGABYTE Aorus GeForce RTX 3060Ti Elite 8G-top of video card

This Aorus RTX 3060 Ti Elite measures 11.6 inches long, 4.6 inches wide, and a full 2.2 inches deep. This video card has some bulk to it. The I/O grid has connections for 2 each display port 1.4a and HDMI 2.1.

GIGABYTE Aorus GeForce RTX 3060Ti Elite 8G-I/O panel

The fans are designed such that the center spins opposite the outer and also does not spin up at idle.  There is a small white light on the outer edge of the cover which lights up “FanStop” when fans are at a stop.  A BIOS switch is also evident, which calls up a more aggressive fan profile for overclocking.  It is “on” by default. This is all a function of the “WindForce 3X Cooling System”. You can see that the heat sink is big.  It extends beyond the PCB. The rear end of the full metal backplate is fully open to allow the best ventilation.

There are unique “neonpunk” RGB rings around the three fans, individually or in groups controlled by GIGABYTE Aorus Engine RGB Fusion 2.0. It is RGB on the edge of the outer-facing side of the video card as well. Aorus Engine is also used to overclock our video card.  The Aorus Engine can control all the usual functions as well as fans (static or custom curves).

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