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| 19. May 2021

NVIDIA RTX 3050 & 3050 Ti — The Laptop GPUs To Go For If You’re On a Budget

The recently announced RTX 3050 and 3050 Ti laptop GPUs from NVIDIA are an astonishingly good deal — there’s really no other way to put it! Now, we already reported on a couple of leaked benchmarks a while ago, but seeing these two mobile GPUs in action has definitely made their upcoming release all the more exciting! The reason why is quite simple: they’re both relatively cheap but also obscenely powerful for the asking price.

We’ve come to the point where you no longer need the most powerful (and, by proxy, most expensive) mobile GPUs to game comfortably — that, in and of itself, is nothing short of spectacular. No longer do we need the most potent hardware imaginable to reach those high frame rates which all of us so desperately desire (not to mention the highest graphical settings). NVIDIA really knocked it out of the park with its latest RTX 3000 series graphics cards, and the same sentiment rings true for both their desktop and laptop offerings.

Unfortunately, most folks still can’t get their hands on the former (at least not for MSRP prices), so if you’re in a pinch and are looking to upgrade your set-up, going with a gaming laptop might make a lot more sense given the current state of the hardware market.

So, without any further ado, let’s get into the nitty-gritty!

RTX 3050 & 3050 Ti — The Laptop GPUs To Go For

Now, on paper, both the RTX 3050 and 3050 Ti pale in comparison to the RTX 3060 which, in all fairness, was to be expected. Still, they’re more than sufficient for reaching the 60 FPS mark — with ray-tracing enabled. NVIDIA is claiming that the 3050 Ti will deliver across numerous triple A titles like Outriders, Control, Watch Dogs: Legion, and even the wildly popular Call of Duty: Warzone.

But the fact that these two laptop GPUs will perform exceptionally well (within very acceptable TDPs) should come as no surprise. What is surprising, however, is that they’ll be fairly affordable — 3050 Ti-equipped gaming laptops will start at around $849, with the RTX 3050 going for a more budget-friendly $799. That’s a surprisingly good deal given the sheer potency of the hardware.

Moreover, the inclusion of DLSS will net you somewhere between a 15% and 30% FPS boost for free, without any degradation in graphical fidelity. These performance gains are unheard of, and seeing how DLSS is quickly becoming the industry standard for AI super-scaling, you can bet it’ll be implemented in each and every single title going forward (or the vast majority of them, at least).

RTX 3050 Ti — Performance w/ & w/o DLSS Enabled

RTX 3050 & 3050 Ti | The Best Laptop GPU Options For the Asking Price

These two dedicated mobile graphics cards from NVIDIA are being marketed and sold as “entry-level” options that serve as a gateway into the world of ray-tracing and DLSS, but don’t let that fool you — they’re surprisingly potent for the asking price. Doubly so once DLSS comes into play. So if you’re looking to buy a gaming laptop but don’t want to invest a small fortune, going with an RTX 3050/3050 Ti-equipped model definitely makes the most sense at this point in time.

The only thing you need to keep in mind is that laptop manufacturers will be able to tweak the TDP of these GPUs depending on the built-in cooling solution. The range we’re talking about is between 35W and 80W which, naturally, are two vastly distant ends of the performance spectrum. The more power these GPUs will be able to draw the better they’ll perform, so just keep that in mind before you pull out your wallet and shell out a couple of hundred dollars/euros. In other words, do a bit of research on the model you’re interested in before making your purchasing decision!