After months and months of anticipation, the next-generation Nvidia Ampere graphics cards are here. The Nvidia GeForce RTX 3080 leads a brand-new lineup of powerful GPUs, which promise serious performance gains and improvements on key features such as ray tracing.
Dubbed as the "biggest generational leap" in Nvidia's history, the RTX 3080 is shaping up to be the ultimate graphics card for serious PC gamers. We'll also be getting an RTX 3070 with high-end graphics at a more affordable price, as well as a beastly RTX 3090 card that promises to deliver 8K gaming complete with ray tracing.
Here's everything you need to know about the Nvidia RTX 3080 and the rest of Nvidia's RTX 30-series, including their price, release date and specs.
Nvidia RTX 3080 release date
At a starting price of $699 the Nvidia GeForce RTX 3080 is a bit of a bargain. Sure that amount of cash is a heck of a lot more expensive than the upcoming PS5 or Xbox Series X. But what you’re getting here is performance that trounces a GeForce RTX 2080 Ti, which was once Nvidia’s most powerful graphics card and started at a rather hefty $999.
At 4K resolutions the GeForce RTX 3080 is only 10 to 15 percent slower than the $1,499 GeForce RTX 3090. So it’s no surprise that it’s offering a lot of bang for the buck.
But there's a catch here: it’s very difficult to get one. Unsurprisingly, given its price and performance, the RTX 3080 sold out extremely quickly when it was released in September. And at the time of writing stocks are still very low; in fact, we haven't been able to find a retailer with the graphics card available. Pre-orders for the RTX 3080 and third-party versions of it are available, but expect stock to be low as well. Nvidia has even warned that such shortages will continue until 2021.
Nvidia RTX 3080 price and pre-orders
The Nvidia GeForce RTX 3080 starts at $699. The higher-end RTX 3090 will start at $1,499, while the RTX 2070 will cost $499.
The graphics card has officially gone on sale at most major retailers, though it's selling out fast. Check below for the latest availability.
Nvidia RTX 3090, 3080 and 3070 specs
|Nvidia RTX 3090||Nvidia RTX 3080||Nvidia RTX 3070|
|Nvidia CUDA Cores||10,496||8,704||5,888|
|Boost Clock (GHz)||1.70||1.71||1.73|
|Standard Memory Config||24GB GDDR6X||10GB GDDR6X||8GB GDDR6|
|Memory Interface Width||384-bit||320-bit||256-bit|
|Ports||HDMI 2.1, DisplayPort 1.4a (3x)||HDMI 2.1, DisplayPort 1.4a (3x)||HDMI 2.1, DisplayPort 1.4a (3x)|
The Nvidia GeForce RTX 3080 packs 30 shader-teraflops (TFLOPS), 58 ray-tracing TFLops and 239 Tensor-TFLOPS. You'll also get 10GB of G6X graphics RAM, which Nvidia says is the fastest you'll find in a GPU.
If that all sounds like a second language to you, know that the RTX 3080 promises to deliver twice the performance as the RTX 2080. And if you're upgrading from an older card such as the RTX 980 Ti, you can look forward to performance gains as high as five times as what your current card is outputting. The RTX 3080 looks to offer consistent 4K gaming at 60 frames per second, similar to the upcoming PS5 and Xbox Series X consoles.
The RTX 3080 features what Nvidia calls the "world's fastest graphics memory," with GDDR6X VRAM that can perform at a whopping 760GB per second. There's also new dedicated ray tracing hardware for even more immersive lighting and shadows in your favorite PC games.
The RTX 3080 also introduces a new thermal-optimized design that promises 55% more airflow, 30% more efficiency, and the ability to be up to three times quieter during heating gaming sessions.
While the RTX 3080 has some exciting specs, the RTX 3090 is where things really get interesting. This $1,499 beast of GPU promises to deliver 8K gaming complete with smooth ray tracing, making it something that true enthusiasts with cash to burn will likely opt for. It's also physically massive, and makes us wonder if it'll fit in most modern PC cases.
Nvidia RTX 3080 performance
Nvidia has claimed the GeForce RTX 3080 is up to twice as fast as the GeForce RTX 2080 it replaces and how it will stomp the RTX 2080 Ti. It's a bold claim indeed.
But in leaked benchmarks, we are given a glimpse at how the RTX 3080 is significantly faster then the RTX 2080 and a good bit faster than the RTX 2080 Ti. And that's just in synthetic benchmarks.
Nvidia pitted the RTX 3080 against the RTX 2080 TI when running Doom Eternal at 4K on Ultra settings. The RTX 3080 is some 50 percent faster than the last top-end Nvidia graphics card, delivering frame rates well above 100fps. And that's likely before a lot of optimization has been done.
In short, the RTX 3080 promises to seriously impress in terms of high-end performance.
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