Update: Nvidia began selling the RTX 3080 with 12GB of memory through select partners on January 11. Original story follows.
Nvidia’s GeForce RTX 3080 12GB has had its alleged specs leaked online. If they turn out to be true, the card’s upgrades would be great for gamers in theory, but could also generate increased interest from cryptocurrency miners.
Rumors of Nvidia releasing a new version of their popular RTX 3080 GPU have been circulating for a while now, but a report from Videocardz (opens in new tab) comes with mixed news about the alleged update.
The RTX 3080 12GB leak provides new details about significant improvements the new model would bring to the table, but note that Videocardz points out that its release is still unconfirmed. In the meantime, the 10GB model continues to sell extremely well, and Nvidia GeForce RTX 3080 restocks still generate sizable demand.
If the RTX 3080 12GB does come to fruition, it will supposedly sport much faster speeds thanks to its 384-bit memory bus. It would also bring with it higher bandwidth speeds of 912 GB/s, which would be a substantial improvement over the original card’s 760GB/s. This would undoubtedly make the card a sought-after piece of tech in 2022, but it comes with a notable caveat for gamers.
While the RTX 3080 12GB would no doubt be an excellent choice of card for gaming enthusiasts, the major boost in speed and power would make cryptocurrency mining even more efficient. So as if it hasn’t been tough enough for gamers to get their hands on 2021’s Nvidia cards, this fresh revision would almost certainly get bought up rapidly by those seeking to enhance their mining capabilities.
Nvidia has previously attempted to use software that would cut the hash rate of cards in half when detecting cryptocurrency mining algorithms, but it hasn’t appeared to make much of a difference in stopping miners from buying in bulk. Hopefully, Nvidia's plan to launch its new lineup of cards made specifically for cryptocurrency miners (and sporting a special Cryptocurrency Mining Processor (opens in new tab)) will drastically improve the availability of RTX cards.
As of right now, the Nvidia GeForce RTX 3080 12GB has not been officially confirmed by Nvidia, so there is no official word about a release date. However, given the increased desire for 4K-capable cards nowadays, the card’s release seems like a safe bet at some point in 2022.