Gamers on a budget looking for a laptop with decent gaming performance have got plenty of options especially if you're looking for something around $1000 (opens in new tab) or less (opens in new tab). The release of the mobile RTX 3050 GPU has excited us at the idea of more affordable gaming laptops coming our way. Though, a recent report from notebookcheck shows that the RTX 3050 might not be all that it's cracked up to be.
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According to their testing, the Dell Inspiron 16 Plus with an RTX 3050 (opens in new tab) was outperformed by the Razer Blade 15 laptop spring a GTX 1660 Ti by nearly 11% in games like Assassin's Creed Valhalla and F1 2020 at 720p and 1080p at light and medium graphics settings.
Interestingly the GTX 1660 Ti laptop kept pace with a Dell G5 15 5590 with an RTX 2060 GPU in a lot of these face-offs. Suffice to say; this comes as a bit of a shock. The 3050 didn't fare any better 1440p gaming judging from this report.
|Header Cell - Column 0||GTX 1650 Ti||GTX 1660 Ti||RTX 3050|
|Core clock speed||1290 MHz||1500 MHz||1222 MHz|
|Boost clock speed||1392 MHz||1770 MHz||1485 MHz|
|Transistors||3,300 million||6,600 million||13,250 million|
|Manufacturing process tech||16 nm||12 nm||8 nm|
|Maximum RAM amount||4 GB||6 GB||4 GB|
|Memory bus width||128 Bit||192 Bit||128 Bit|
|Memory bandwidth||112 GB/s||288 GB/s||224 GB/s|
|TDP||75 w||120 w||75 w|
The reason for the lower performance is no secret. The RTX 3050 has a reduced number of texture mapping units (TMUs) and a smaller memory bus compared to the GTX 1660 Ti and RTX 2060. The GTX 1660 Ti is a cheaper card but you're getting far more than your money's worth than you would an RTX 3050 in this situation.
The other two cards have the 1660 Ti beat since they offer DLSS support, which uses AI-powered supersampling to boost performance in-game and increase visual fidelity, which isn't reflected in these testing benchmarks
To be fair, the Inspiron 16 Plus that's referenced is a 65w model of RTX 3050, which is pretty underpowered. I would also consider that config of the Inspiron 16 Plus more of laptop for work that can play some games.
That said, the bigger story is the Nvidia's old budget GPU GTX 1660 Ti is still a pretty solid performing budget GPU and, in this case, seems to give better results than Nivida's most current budget GPU.
Either way, we look forward to seeing more high-powered RTX 3050s in more gaming laptops and seeing how they stack up against some of the best gaming laptops.