AMD's Vega Frontier Edition cards didn't set new records for gaming performance, but the company's marketing team never said playing games was the Frontier Edition's mission. The cards did offer up compelling performance for their price point in certain professional workloads, and they could work with laptop computers using external graphics enclosures through AMD's XConnect feature. Nvidia is striking back on both fronts today with new drivers that claim a three-fold performance increase for Titan Xp cards in professional applications like Maya. The company is also making the Titan Xp and Quadro workstation graphics cards available in external graphics boxes.
Although Nvidia didn't say quite how it achieved its driver performance boosts or what applications will benefit, it seems like a fair bet that it's bringing some of the optimizations from its Quadro drivers into those for the Titan Xp. The newly-available optimizations appear to work for the Titan X Pascal, as well. Reddit user "brutuscat2" ran his own Specviewperf benchmarks on his personal Titan X Pascal and saw increases for 3DSMax, Catia, Creo, and other apps in the test suite.
Team Green also announced support for Titan X and Quadro graphics cards in external graphics enclosures. The press release didn't have a lot of specific information, but it did say that external Quadro graphics enclosures will need to come from qualified eGPU partners including Bizon, Sonnet, and One Stop Systems to maintain full certification and support. The prosumer Titan Xp and Titan X Pascal cards should already be usable in external graphics enclosures from Asus, HP, Powercolor, and Razer, among others.
Nvidia Titan Xp owners who want to experience performance increases in professional applications can head on over to Nvidia's GeForce driver download page. Nvidia says its partners will start shipping external Quadro graphics enclosures in September.