Is it worth paying $100 more to get Nvidia’s RTX 3070, or are you going to be just fine with the 3060 Ti? I’ve compared both in 13 games at 4K, 1440p, and 1080p as well as content creator workloads to help you decide which to pick.
Starting with the spec differences, both cards have 8 gig of GDDR6 memory at the same speed. The 3070 is rated 20 watts higher but has a higher boost clock speed and 21% more CUDA cores, but has a $100 higher MSRP as a result, though actual prices could differ depending on availability issues that exist near launch.
Test PC Setup
This is the system that I’m using to test out both graphics cards, so an overclocked i9-10900K at 5.2GHz with 32gb of DDR4-3200 CL14 memory in dual channel. We’ll first dig into the gaming results, then check out cost per frame, power draw, and content creator workloads afterwards.
Microsoft Flight Simulator was tested in the Sydney landing challenge. There was more of a difference seen in the 1% lows, at 1080p the 1% low from the 3070 was 17% higher than the 3060 Ti, however the average FPS was just 9% higher. Red Dead Redemption 2 was tested using the games benchmark, and the differences were similar with the 3070 10% faster in average frame rate at 1080p, and similar differences at the higher resolutions too. Battlefield 5 saw an above average difference between the two, but despite that there’s still not too much difference. Even at 4K the 3060 Ti was still able to pass 60 FPS with the highest ultra setting preset. The 3070 was 20% faster than the 3060 Ti here, the largest difference at 4K out of the 13 games tested.
Shadow of the Tomb Raider was tested with the games built in benchmark. The 3060 Ti wasn’t quite able to pass 60 FPS at 4K this time, unlike the 3070, but again I’m testing the highest setting presets here which you could of course lower, but this does mean the 3070 was reaching 15% higher frame rate.
For Control I’ll start with ray tracing off results. Both were somewhat usable at 4K but not amazing, 1440p ran a lot better, at least with high settings. The 3070 was reaching 16% higher average FPS at this resolution, and 13% higher at the lower 1080p. With ray tracing on 1440p was still playable on both, though 1080p was a smoother experience with the 3070 running 11% faster. This game does of course have DLSS which will further boost performance on both graphics cards, I just wanted to see raw ray tracing only results. Dirt 5 was also tested with and without ray tracing. Without ray tracing there’s generally a below average difference here, the 3070 was reaching 13% higher average FPS at 4K.With ray tracing enabled frame rates are cut significantly, probably not too worthwhile given even 1080p is below 60 FPS on both cards, granted I’m using max settings which could be lowered, but for comparison's sake the 3070 was 7% ahead. I’ve tested Metro Exodus with the game's benchmark tool, the differences in 1% low were much smaller when compared to the averages which seems pretty typical with this game based on other comparisons I’ve done. Death Stranding on the other hand was another game where the 3070’s 1% lows were a fair bit higher, only a little behind the average FPS from the 3060 Ti. At 1440p, the 1% low from the 3070 was 23% higher than the 3060 Ti, meanwhile the difference to average FPS was lower at 11%. The Witcher 3 had the largest difference between these two graphics cards at 1080p and 1440p resolutions, with the 3070 16% and 17% ahead of the 3060 Ti respectively. At 4K there was a slightly larger 18% difference, making this the second largest improvement on the 3070 out of the 13 games we’re looking at here. Assassin’s Creed Valhalla was tested with the games benchmark, and this game had the smallest difference out of all games. Basically no change at 1080p, the 3070 was 5% ahead at 1440p, and 8% ahead at 4K, so yeah probably not worth spending 25% more money on a 3070 for. The differences in Watch Dogs Legion were very similar to the average differences out of all games, so what we’re looking at here is fairly representative of most games covered. The 3070 is definitely faster, I just don’t think there’s much difference in practice. Call of Duty Modern Warfare was tested in campaign mode and only had small changes at 1080p, the 3070 was just 5% ahead in average FPS. Things pick up a bit at 1440p though, where the 3070 was now 12% faster, then 15% faster at 4K, so larger differences at higher resolutions. Rainbow Six Siege was the only game tested with Vulkan, and the performance differences were a little above average with the 3070 when compared to the rest of the games, but still the 3060 Ti is delivering great results and isn’t too far behind in average FPS. The biggest difference was to 1% low at 1440p, where the 3070 was 37% ahead.
1080p Gaming Results
At 1080p on average over all 13 games tested the 3070 was 10% faster than the 3060 Ti in average FPS. Results could vary a fair bit based on the specific game though, with as little as a 2% gain with Assassin’s Creed down the bottom of the graph, or up to a 16% boost in The Witcher 3 up the top.
1440p Gaming Results
Stepping up to 1440p and the 3070 was now 12.5% faster than the 3060 Ti on average. This trend of bigger differences at higher resolutions is expected as the GPU can get to work and system limitations depend less on other components.
4K Gaming Results
This continues at 4K, where the 3070 is now over 14% faster than the 3060 Ti on average. Best case, Battlefield 5 was 20% ahead with the 3070 at the top of this graph, while Assassin’s Creed was still stuck at the bottom, though it wasn’t just a small 2% change anymore as was the case at 1080p.
Cost Per Frame
The 3060 Ti is able to deliver better value in terms of cost per frame. It’s $100 less, but as we’ve seen for the most part the difference in frame rates isn’t all that large. The 3060 Ti is still definitely offering good performance, so combined with a better price it’s just a better value pick.
When looking at total system power draw from the wall, the 3070 was drawing less than 7% more wattage in Control at 4K. With this extra power, the 3070 was also reaching 17% higher average FPS in this game which certainly sounds better in terms of efficiency.
Performance Per Watt
The performance per watt measurements aren’t perfect as I’m taking the wattage numbers from the last graph which is one game and applying them to the average frame rates of all 13 games tested, so take this as an approximation. The 3070 is performing better in all games, but based on power draw results in control at 4K, it doesn’t need too much extra power to achieve this, so the 3070 is winning in this aspect.
Content creator workloads
Not with gaming covered let’s also take a look at some content creator workloads. I’ve tested DaVinci Resolve with the Puget Systems benchmark. The difference was very small, with the 3070 scoring just 2% higher than the 3060 Ti. My Adobe Premiere export test was actually consistently a little faster on the 3060 Ti, but it’s only a 13 second difference in a 9 minute render, so again nothing major and kind of margin of error stuff. The V-Ray benchmark was only scoring 4% higher on the 3070. Both of these offer huge gains compared to older Turing graphics cards if you’ve caught any of my previous comparisons, but relative to each other there’s not much difference. Blender was tested with the Open Data Benchmark. The longer classroom test was completing 11% faster with the 3070, while the shorter BMW test was 9% faster, or just 3 seconds, again nothing too large.
So as expected, the more expensive 3070 outperforms the 3060 Ti, but in many of the games tested, I don’t think it’s that big of a difference that you’d notice in practice, and the same deal in content creator workloads.
Assuming MSRP, to get the 3070 you’re paying 25% more money for a 10% boost in games at 1080p, or 12 and a half percent boost at 1440p. That percentage difference becomes smaller in the context of an entire new system, that’s more relevant if you’re only upgrading the graphics card. Unless you’re going for high resolution gaming like 4K and have the money, honestly I think the 3060 Ti is the better value pick for most people, it still performs very well.
You could argue the 3070 has better power efficiency, and hey if you’re going to be smashing the GPU for hours every day and pay a lot for power then over a long period of time the 3070 may be more worthwhile.
I’ve actually compared it against the 2080 Super from last generation, as Nvidia were saying that the 3060 Ti beats it, so definitely check out that review if you want to get an idea of how well the 3060 Ti compares to the more expensive options from last generation.
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