Controversial GeForce GT 1030 – Is Nvidia really deceiving its consumers?

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Nvidia is the Graphics card manufacturer that was founded in 1993 by the ex-AMD employee Jensen Huang (Current CEO of Nvidia), Chris Malachowsky who was an engineer at Sun Microsystems and Curtis Priem who also worked at Sun Microsystems. The company got recognized when it launched its 2nd graphics adaptor, and then it started producing the graphics adaptor for Microsoft and Xbox, and thus Nvidia got the well-needed investment to venture its way forward. Then Nvidia, as we all know, started its line of the GeForce Graphics cards, there are ten generations of these Graphics cards, and we have reviewed many of the current and previous generation Graphics cards, you might want to have a look.

Since Nvidia has made its name as a reputed Graphics card manufacturer that is way ahead of the competition, they have certain quality assessment measures that make sure that the product getting to the market is good for the customers. All the graphics card that we get from Nvidia show considerate performance according to the tier they are released in and these Graphics card can stay in your PC for around three years without any performance degradation and any other issues. However, there is one thing that Nvidia has been very “fishy” for some of their products that we do not see the official release of some of their products.

Image: Benzinga
Image: Benzinga

To solidify the fact mentioned above, let me introduce some of the Graphics cards that Nvidia secretly launched and then I will specify the release that made us write this article. Nvidia wanted to secretly launch the 3GB version of the GTX 1060 only in Chinese market, but when the rumors reached the surface Nvidia had to release the details of the Graphics card over its website the 3GB version had fewer CUDA cores and less VRAM, but the quality of the new GeForce GTX 1060 was top of the line, performance, and the specifications were not misleading even for a person who is not familiar with the terminologies. Then for the 3GB version of the GTX 1050 SKU Nvidia had the same plan, they wanted to release it for the Chinese consumers only, and we saw another reveal of the specifications over Nvidia’s website. Then again there was nothing wrong with this Graphics card it was released worldwide, and the specifications were not misleading even for a person who does not understand this.

Image: The Verge
Image: The Verge

Lastly, they announced their budget $70 graphics card that is for those people who are just starting to build their first PC and don’t know much about the PC Hardware; we have a detailed review of this card on our site. Nvidia quietly revealed another version of this card that was named the same but there were different regarding performance.

The specifications of both these cards are the same regarding all the numbers, and these are usually what a layman sees, but there is a catch in one version instead of using the high-quality GDDR5 memory Nvidia decided to use the DDR4 memory that is usually used in Desktops and Smartphone.

The DDR4 memory is not necessarily bad but the speed of the memory is just not good for rendering high definition textures, and it is one of the many reasons why the Graphics card manufacturers opt for the expensive GDDR5 memory instead of the DDR4 memory, even the lowest end last gen graphics cards from AMD and Nvidia used GDDR5 memory.

We are not complaining why they used DDR4 memory in one of the versions the only concern is that Nvidia can just change the name of the graphics card in order to differentiate the products or they can just augment the price of both versions so that people choose what they want according to price and any misleading due to some “Stunt” by Nvidia may be avoided.

Now, Nvidia has kept the same price for both versions that means the performance that both of these versions put on the table should at least be comparable if not completely same. However, this is not the case both cards are very different according to our performance charts. The GDDR5 version of the card showed 60% better perfromance than the DDR4 version the difference is insane here. We tested Battlefield one on low settings 1080p the GDDR5 version was easily getting above 60FPS on average while the DDR4 version could hardly manage to keep the framerates above 30.

In Far Cry 5 benchmark at 720p medium settings GDDR5 version got an average framerate of around 50 while DDR4 version could not even hit 30 and scored worse than the AMD Ryzen 5 APU. Lastly, we tested the most popular game of the world Fortnite at 1080p medium settings the GDDR5 version was easily getting above 60 frames always while the experience with the DDR4 version was not good it could only reach 38 frames. All in all, Nvidia has developed a reputation that they must not lose just by secretly releasing the less competitive version of the Graphics card.

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