Yes, your first point is correct. But 6GB isn´t overkill. Games these days consume more then 4GB at 1080p. That will increase in the future. The 3GB one is targeted at casual gamers who play CS:GO, Dota 2 or LoL.
I would get the 6GB version if you plan on playing AAA-titles.
I assume Nvidia is pushing the 1060 3 GB version as their card intended for gaming at 1080p and high framerates in low-demand, highly popular games like League of Legends, Dota 2, Blizzard games, CS:GO, etc. If you're that type of gamer, it might be well-suited to you. Otherwise I'd get the 6 GB version.
It's also worth noting that the memory size isn't the only difference. The 3 GB GTX 1060 is actually a cut-down version of the chip, so the price does buy you something more than just VRAM. The 6 GB version will probably be a bit faster regardless.
GTX 1060 ( and RX 470/480) are ideal 1080p Cards. Many games in 1440p too, but with limits (the higher the resolution, the more the Memory Bandwidth will bottleneck).
The 3gb Version is.... "ooooookay" for Today 1080p. But it's far from Future proof, and in fact, 3gb is not enough for the Performance. The Vram size will bottleneck in certain Games already.
For most games 2gb will be enough? Yes, if it's 2012. That was the case for my 4 year odl AMD 7870 2gb.
But today? Lets take Assassin's Creed Unity. 2 Year odl game. 1080p, Everything maxed out (only AA is down to FXAA). Vram consumption goes up to 3300 mb. So the 3gb model will be BARELY enough to run that).
When i go up to TXAA (which gets my GTX 1060 MSI Gaming X 6gb) down to around 43 fps~, Vram consumption shoots up to 4700-5000 mb. (usage... How much truly is needed is a different thing).
Witcher 3 is known to be very efficient on Vram, despite the good Graphics. But in 1080p and high/ultra settings, it's mostly between 3000-3500~ mb Vram.
2gb are almost unusable now. Just check some RX 460 tests, since that's available in 2 and 4gb Ram. There are games, where you get a Huge fps boost, because 2gb are NOT enough. On some games, the 4gb model get's 60 fps, while the 2gb model sits at 33 fps~. And an GTZX 1060 has more than double the Performance (2.5x Performance maybe even).
4gb would be good. But that's not really possible with 192 Bit memory interface
That's why the 1060 has 6gb ram, and not 4 or 8.
Every 256 Bit GPU has either 2 gb, 4gb or 8gb ^^
Titan X has 386 Bit, and 12gb Vram. Both is exactly doubled from 192 bit, and 6gb Vram.
In the end, i would go for:
- Need to be cheap? RX 470 4gb (or 8gb, if it's like at least 30-50 bucks cheaper than a good GTX 1060 6gb model).
- Not that cheap? go for 1060, or RX 480 if you have a Freesync monitor, or if you want to use the card at least 4 full Years (since in 2 years or so (+- 1 year) the RX 480 might catch up due to better Driver Optimization and maybe better DX 12 optimization.
I personally had the 7870 4 years, and went with Nvidia. Wanted to get the EVGA SC originally, but wasnt available anywhere so.... i bite in the sour apple, and Payd 329 for the GTX 1060 MSI Gaming X 6G.
I don't regret it. This Card is a BEAST.
I never saw more than 66°C~ even with 27° Room temperature. Both Fans only went up to around 1000 rpm, which is not hearable for me (i have a Thermalright Macho HR 02, that speds up to 600 rpm only under load, and a Fractal Design R5 with Case fans set to max 650-700 rpm~), so a pretty quiet system.
My previous 279€ GTX 1060 Palit DUAL had 75-77°C under the same Conditions, and a Fan speed or 1900-2000 rpm.
And most Tests confirm this. The MSI Gaming is the best Custom design for the GTX 1060 on the Market. But it's a bit more pricy..
The RX 480 MSI Gaming X is also one of the 2 best RX 480 custom designs (other one beeing Powercolor Red Devil!), but it's still a few Decibels louder than the GTX 1060, and a few % slower.
Techpowerup had both MSI Gaming models in Test, so you can compare them very good in their game benchmarks.
You also didn't read my post. I said that I tried both standalone and they are both working if in single channel. I also linked the RAM stick, those are dual stick 2x4GB, identical sticks, they were working together before.
No luck needed here because I bought this mobo 12 days ago, and here in Poland you can return anything within 14 days without saying why, so I will easily get a refund and get new mobo. But thanks anyway