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Update | How will the upcoming Nvidia Super Max-Q GPUs fit in the already bloated lineup of standard RTX and Max-Q RTX options? Let's take a closer look at the benchmarks

Will the new Nvidia GeForce Super Max-Q GPUs be any relevant? Let's take a closer look at the benchmarks (Image source: Nvidia)
Will the new Nvidia GeForce Super Max-Q GPUs be any relevant? Let's take a closer look at the benchmarks (Image source: Nvidia)
Will the new Nvidia GeForce Super Max-Q GPUs be any relevant in the laptop space? There isn't a lot of room and some performance overlap could be inevitable based on our benchmarks on almost 100 different GeForce RTX laptops already in the market.
Allen Ngo, 🇷🇺

(April 15, 2020 update: We've added in-house benchmarks on the RTX 2070 Super Max-Q and RTX 2080 Super Max-Q courtesy of the latest Gigabyte Aero 17 and Acer Predator Triton 500, respectively, to see how these GPUs officially line up with the existing SKUs. Users can expect the RTX 2070 Super Max-Q to perform like the RTX 2080 Max-Q and the RTX 2080 Super Max-Q to be 12 to 14 percent faster than the RTX 2070 Super Max-Q.)

During the Pascal generation, Nvidia offered the GeForce GTX 1060 Max-Q, GTX 1070 Max-Q, and GTX 1080 Max-Q GPUs in 60 - 70 W TDP, 80 - 90 W TDP, and 90 W - 110 W TDP ranges, respectively. In contrast, the latest Turing RTX 2060, RTX 2070 Max-Q, and RTX 2080 Max-Q are each in the 80 - 90 W range to allow for more flexibility in laptop designs from OEMs. This leveled approach is the major reason why manufacturers like MSI and Razer are able to offer all three RTX GPUs in the GS65 and Blade 15, respectively, whereas this would have been impossible with Pascal GPUs.

A key drawback to the strategy, however, is that the raw performance differences between each successive GeForce RTX SKU are rather minor. As an example, jumping from the RTX 2060 Max-Q to the RTX 2060 brings just 3 to 6 percent faster performance while jumping from the RTX 2060 to the RTX 2070 Max-Q is another 5 to 6 percent only. In fact, their differences are so small that there are instances where a regular RTX 2060 laptop like our Walmart EVOO can actually outperform a more expensive RTX 2070 Max-Q model. 

The two largest performance gaps are between the RTX 2070 Max-Q and RTX 2070 at 17 percent and RTX 2080 Max-Q and RTX 2080 at 23 to 28 percent. Our graphs below illustrate the average performance gain between each mobile Turing GPU more concisely.

3DMark
2560x1440 Port Royal Graphics
Average NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2080 Mobile
  (5377 - 6005, n=14)
5674 Points ∼46%
Acer Predator Triton 500 PT515-52-70N3
NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2080 Super Max-Q, i7-10750H
5086 Points ∼42%
Average NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2080 Max-Q
  (3698 - 5295, n=19)
4531 Points ∼37%
Gigabyte Aero 17 HDR XB
NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2070 Super Max-Q, i7-10875H
4477 Points ∼37%
Average NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2070 Mobile
  (3958 - 4627, n=13)
4294 Points ∼35%
Average NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2070 Max-Q
  (3240 - 4742, n=21)
3798 Points ∼31%
Walmart EVOO Gaming 17
NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2060 Mobile, i7-9750H
3742 Points ∼31%
Average NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2060 Mobile
  (3020 - 3859, n=27)
3426 Points ∼28%
Average NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2060 Max-Q
  (3032 - 3307, n=2)
3170 Points ∼26%
Average NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1660 Ti Mobile
  (1097 - 1540, n=7)
1426 Points ∼12%
Average NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1660 Ti Max-Q
 
1294 Points ∼11%
2560x1440 Time Spy Graphics
Average NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2080 Mobile
  (9411 - 10992, n=15)
10046 Points ∼53%
Acer Predator Triton 500 PT515-52-70N3
NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2080 Super Max-Q, i7-10750H
8379 Points ∼44%
Average NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2080 Max-Q
  (6464 - 8844, n=19)
7903 Points ∼42%
Average NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2070 Mobile
  (7006 - 8028, n=18)
7651 Points ∼41%
Gigabyte Aero 17 HDR XB
NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2070 Super Max-Q, i7-10875H
7468 Points ∼40%
Walmart EVOO Gaming 17
NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2060 Mobile, i7-9750H
6910 Points ∼37%
Average NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2070 Max-Q
  (5948 - 8065, n=25)
6702 Points ∼36%
Average NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2060 Mobile
  (5660 - 6910, n=38)
6211 Points ∼33%
Average NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2060 Max-Q
  (5357 - 5914, n=3)
5707 Points ∼30%
Average NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1660 Ti Mobile
  (5335 - 6123, n=22)
5653 Points ∼30%
Average NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1660 Ti Max-Q
  (4867 - 5440, n=8)
5089 Points ∼27%
1920x1080 Fire Strike Graphics
Average NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2080 Mobile
  (22504 - 27319, n=16)
25211 Points ∼51%
Acer Predator Triton 500 PT515-52-70N3
NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2080 Super Max-Q, i7-10750H
22326 Points ∼45%
Gigabyte Aero 17 HDR XB
NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2070 Super Max-Q, i7-10875H
20914 Points ∼42%
Average NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2080 Max-Q
  (18048 - 23032, n=19)
20658 Points ∼42%
Average NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2070 Mobile
  (18169 - 21138, n=19)
20123 Points ∼40%
Walmart EVOO Gaming 17
NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2060 Mobile, i7-9750H
18055 Points ∼36%
Average NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2070 Max-Q
  (11563 - 21191, n=28)
17345 Points ∼35%
Average NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2060 Mobile
  (14768 - 18358, n=40)
16301 Points ∼33%
Average NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2060 Max-Q
  (14241 - 15650, n=3)
15156 Points ∼30%
Average NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1660 Ti Mobile
  (14186 - 16488, n=24)
14867 Points ∼30%
Average NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1660 Ti Max-Q
  (12903 - 13870, n=7)
13356 Points ∼27%
3DMark 11
1280x720 Performance Combined
Gigabyte Aero 17 HDR XB
NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2070 Super Max-Q, i7-10875H
16311 Points ∼67%
Average NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2080 Mobile
  (9038 - 18934, n=17)
14407 Points ∼60%
Average NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2060 Max-Q
  (13033 - 15054, n=3)
13873 Points ∼57%
Acer Predator Triton 500 PT515-52-70N3
NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2080 Super Max-Q, i7-10750H
12708 Points ∼53%
Average NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2070 Mobile
  (8716 - 16364, n=21)
12534 Points ∼52%
Average NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2070 Max-Q
  (9107 - 17603, n=28)
12492 Points ∼52%
Walmart EVOO Gaming 17
NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2060 Mobile, i7-9750H
12450 Points ∼51%
Average NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1660 Ti Mobile
  (9500 - 13311, n=23)
12019 Points ∼50%
Average NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2080 Max-Q
  (9212 - 14894, n=20)
11726 Points ∼48%
Average NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2060 Mobile
  (1107 - 14726, n=37)
11583 Points ∼48%
Average NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1660 Ti Max-Q
  (6644 - 14112, n=7)
10910 Points ∼45%
1280x720 Performance GPU
Average NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2080 Mobile
  (31826 - 38809, n=17)
35286 Points ∼60%
Acer Predator Triton 500 PT515-52-70N3
NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2080 Super Max-Q, i7-10750H
30456 Points ∼52%
Gigabyte Aero 17 HDR XB
NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2070 Super Max-Q, i7-10875H
28555 Points ∼49%
Average NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2080 Max-Q
  (23386 - 30910, n=20)
27852 Points ∼47%
Average NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2070 Mobile
  (23335 - 27298, n=21)
25775 Points ∼44%
Walmart EVOO Gaming 17
NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2060 Mobile, i7-9750H
23734 Points ∼40%
Average NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2070 Max-Q
  (14723 - 27694, n=28)
22354 Points ∼38%
Average NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2060 Mobile
  (19143 - 24662, n=37)
21419 Points ∼36%
Average NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2060 Max-Q
  (18863 - 21105, n=3)
20180 Points ∼34%
Average NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1660 Ti Mobile
  (18610 - 22670, n=24)
20096 Points ∼34%
Average NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1660 Ti Max-Q
  (17010 - 18653, n=8)
17711 Points ∼30%

The small advantages from each step up mean that there will be very little breathing room for the GeForce Super Max-Q GPUs to be impactful. The GeForce 2070 Super Max-Q, for example, will have to offer a performance level between that of the RTX 2080 Max-Q and RTX 2080 at the very least. The RTX 2080 Super Max-Q would then have to perform even faster than the standard RTX 2080 or else it would perform too closely to the RTX 2070 Super Max-Q. Otherwise, users can just purchase a regular RTX 2070 or RTX 2080 Max-Q instead. If the gains aren't large enough, then the newer Super Max-Q lineup could risk confusing buyers trying to decide between Max-Q, non-Max-Q, and Super Max-Q laptops.

Models sporting GeForce Super Max-Q GPUs are expected to launch in the coming months. As usual, we'll have to test a handful of retail units to grow our sample size before laying a verdict on the series.

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> Notebook / Laptop Reviews and News > News > News Archive > Newsarchive 2020 04 > How will the upcoming Nvidia Super Max-Q GPUs fit in the already bloated lineup of standard RTX and Max-Q RTX options? Let's take a closer look at the benchmarks
Allen Ngo, 2020-04-10 (Update: 2020-09-30)
Allen Ngo
Allen Ngo - US Editor in Chief
After graduating with a B.S. in environmental hydrodynamics from the University of California, I studied reactor physics to become licensed by the U.S. NRC to operate nuclear reactors. There's a striking level of appreciation you gain for everyday consumer electronics after working with modern nuclear reactivity systems astonishingly powered by computers from the 80s. When I'm not managing day-to-day activities and US review articles on Notebookcheck, you can catch me following the eSports scene and the latest gaming news.