Nvidia GTX 980 Ti 2-way SLI nearly doubles performance at 4K

Nvidia Gtx 980 Ti

Our colleagues over at Maximum PC have been performing some dangerous SLI experiments in their labs, only to come up with a startling discovery: two GTX 980 Tis are faster than one GTX 980 Ti! We know, we know—it's truly shocking. But these tests must be done, as the 4K gods must be sated with Ultra 60 fps performance.

Nvidia is pushing the 980 Ti as a solution for 4K gaming, which makes sense since its 6GB of VRAM is enough to support any currently available game pushed to the limit. But framerates are another story: not even the mighty 980 Ti can run games like GTA 5 or The Witcher 3 at 4K Ultra settings without dropping below 30 frames per second. Tweak some settings and you might get great framerates, or you could just slap another $650 card into the case and aim for the glory of 60 fps.

Maximum PC tested the SLI performance of a pair of GTX 980 Tis and got some interesting results. Scaling varies from game to game, and often offered only 20-30% increased performance over a single 980 Ti at 1080p. At 4K, however, the SLI setup scaled much better, delivering 89% higher average framerates in Middle-earth: Shadow of Mordor and 95% higher framerates in Tomb Raider.

Those are damn good numbers, and we hope to see them trend even higher over the next two years, as game developers start implementing DirectX 12 and getting more performance out of graphics hardware.

Check out the full article for all the numbers, as well as data on minimum framerates, which unfortunately don't scale as effectively in SLI.

Wes Fenlon
Senior Editor

Wes has been covering games and hardware for more than 10 years, first at tech sites like The Wirecutter and Tested before joining the PC Gamer team in 2014. Wes plays a little bit of everything, but he'll always jump at the chance to cover emulation and Japanese games.

When he's not obsessively optimizing and re-optimizing a tangle of conveyor belts in Satisfactory (it's really becoming a problem), he's probably playing a 20-year-old Final Fantasy or some opaque ASCII roguelike. With a focus on writing and editing features, he seeks out personal stories and in-depth histories from the corners of PC gaming and its niche communities. 50% pizza by volume (deep dish, to be specific).