Rather judiciously, MSI has registered 29 different codes instead of outright naming the products or offering details about specifications presumably to avoid spilling the beans ahead of NVIDIA’s planned reveal next week on September 1st. With the hype at fever pitch, fans are more attuned than ever to potential leaks, and seemingly cryptic part numbers should throw most of the scent.
These codes show up in the ECC listing in the following format – 602-V388-08S. They breakdown into three GPU models with variations assigned to each one – 14 for the 602-V388 model; 11 for the 602-V389; and four for the 602-V390. Now, at face value, this doesn’t reveal all that much – the best we can do is tentatively speculate that they refer to the expected GeForce RTX 3090, 3080, and 3070 (if that terminology is even on the money).
However, we can peek at MSI’s current Turing cards and their naming convention to glean a bit more from the codes. For its existing range of GeForce RTX 20-series GPUs, MSI refers to the RTX 2080 Ti as V371, the RTX 2080 as V372, the RTX 2070 as V373, and the RTX 2060 as V375. In short: the smaller the number, the higher up the GPU hierarchy, with the specifications to match, the card is. If MSI sticks with the same coding this time around, then V388 may well point to the GeForce RTX 3090, V389 may refer to the GeForce RTX 3080, and V390 could be the GeForce RTX 3070.
The third number in the codes appears to indicate different GPU versions rather than any tangible indication of specifications or differentiating features that set them apart. Interestingly, each registered entry is affixed with an ‘S,’ possibly referring to a new generation of GPUs: the RTX 20-series Turing GPUs featured an ‘R’ and its conceivable MSI will continue forward alphabetically with each new generational leap.
With a total of 29 different variants of the three GPUs, it would be unwise to expect MSI to unleash as many models when the Ampere GPUs launch this September. Manufacturers take ‘a better safe than sorry’ approach to registering products with the ECC, logging a glut of products for potential release much later, or merely to cover every possible avenue. Many end up unused, dormant on the ECC database for eternity.
As with all the leaks and rumors emerging in the last few days, we don’t have long to know whether they are genuine or merely the fanciful conjuring of enterprising trolls. NVIDIA is expected to announce the Ampere gaming GPUs during the GeForce Special Event on September 1st when the 21-day Ultimate Countdown comes to an end. Whether we’ll see the three models hinted at in the MSI ECC registration is unclear, but we can bet on the RTX 3090 and RTX 3080 making an appearance under the Founders Edition guise, at least.