Outmatched and outgunned: RTX 3050 6GB struggles to keep up

Embarrassingly, RTX 3050 6GB lags behind Nvidia's GTX 1660 Ti, a product of yesteryears, in all performance metrics
The image shows an NVIDIA GPU. — Nvidia
The image shows an NVIDIA GPU. — Nvidia

TechPowerUp's analysis of Nvidia's latest entry-level offering, the GeForce RTX 3050 6GB, paints a picture of performance with a spectrum of interpretations. While the review lauds the card's claim to being the fastest GPU without the need for a dedicated power connector, it simultaneously reveals a tale of disappointment when stacked against its higher-capacity sibling and even older models.

Despite its nomenclature implying a step up from its predecessors, the RTX 3050 6GB falls short in more ways than just memory capacity. TechPowerUp's deep dive into the hardware specifications reveals a significant trimming down across various parameters, effectively placing the card closer to an "RTX 3040" in essence rather than a true iteration of the RTX 3050 series.

RTX 3050 6GB vs RTX 3050 8GB

In direct comparison to the RTX 3050 8GB variant, the 6GB model exhibits notable handicaps, including fewer CUDA cores and SMs, reduced boost clock, diminished memory bandwidth and capacity, and a drastically lower TDP.

The consequence of these heavily pared-down specifications is glaringly evident in performance tests. TechPowerUp's benchmarks depict the RTX 3050 6GB consistently trailing behind its higher-capacity counterpart across different resolutions. More embarrassingly, it lags behind Nvidia's GTX 1660 Ti, a product of yesteryears, in all performance metrics.

While the RTX 3050 6GB manages to shine in efficiency comparisons, offering efficiency levels similar to Nvidia's Ada Lovelace architecture, its lacklustre performance at a price point of $180 leaves much to be desired. In a market where AMD's RX 6600 and Intel's Arc A750 offer significantly better performance for a slightly higher price, the RTX 3050 6GB struggles to find a compelling niche beyond its compatibility with systems lacking a dedicated PCIe power cable.

In sum, TechPowerUp's verdict renders the RTX 3050 6GB a lacklustre contender in the entry-level GPU segment, failing to deliver on both performance and value fronts despite its power-efficient design.