There is no doubt that ZOTAC still reigns supreme when it comes to factory overclocked NVIDIA graphics cards. Their previous GTX 1080 AMP Extreme cards were one of the fastest Pascal GPU cards that we have tested till date. But will the latest ZOTAC GTX 1080 Ti AMP Extreme follow suit? Let’s find out.
Design and Features
Contrary to the design that was used on the previous ZOTAC GTX 1080 AMP Extreme, the new card features a similar looking but slightly buffed up ExoArmor chassis and heat sinks. There is the new SPECTRA LED lighting system and triple 90mm ZOTAC IceStorm based cooling fans on the front side. For maximizing the cooling efficiency, the ZOTAC GTX 1080 Ti AMP Extreme uses direct copper contacts to draw the heat away from the GPU chip and placed thermal heat pads on the card’s critical components that generate heat. These fans can remain idle or run silently to reduce the wear and tear on the fan system when the GPU temperatures haven’t crossed the threshold, something that ZOTAC calls it FREEZE. That said, we noticed that the noise of the fans was quite louder than the other GTX 1080 Ti cards that we have tested.
While most of the graphics card makers simply install a simple metal backplate, ZOTAC takes it forward with a wraparound extension that protects the exposed components on the side and top portions of the card. The previous GTX 1080 AMP Extreme also featured a similar design. While the backplate also features slanting heat vents, there are two POWERBOOST control chips that are left exposed. This chip is responsible for live electrical current regulations and reducing ripple noises and power fluctuations for a longer-lasting card. It’s quite odd that there are two “ZOTAC” brandings on the backplate, one of which is backed by the SPECTRA LED lighting.
Speaking of LEDs, ZOTAC divides the SPECTRA lighting system into three different zones. The “ZOTAC” LED lighting on the top is referred as Zone 1, the six front-facing LED strips belong to Zone 2, and the third is the “ZOTAC” LED lighting on the backplate that we saw earlier. There is the “PUSH THE LIMIT” 3D slogan that's located on the upper-middle SPECTRA strip in Zone 2. Users can use the ZOTAC FireStorm application to tune the lighting system for different colors and lighting modes.
The 16+2 power phase design used in the 1080 Ti AMP Extreme ensures that the power load is distributed evenly when operating at the maximum frequencies. The card requires an 8+8-pin power connection and ZOTAC recommends a 600W power supply unit to be used in your system in which the card draws 320W.
The output connections on the ZOTAC GTX 1080 Ti AMP Extreme includes three Display Ports 1.4, one HDMI 2.0b and one DL-DVI-D. We wish ZOTAC could have replaced one of the DP ports for another HDMI 2.0 port.