NVIDIA Unveils the RTX 4080, Twice as Fast as RTX 3080 Ti, Comes in Two Flavors & Starting at $899

At its Beyond GeForce event, NVIDIA has just revealed the next-gen RTX 4080 based on the new ‘Ada Lovelace‘ microarchitecture. Massive gains in performance and efficiency have been promised over the RTX 3080. This GPU is poised to become the gamer’s choice considering the value proposition. Most interestingly, it will be offered in 2 different variants to suit your liking. 

Ada Lovelace brings new 3rd generation RT Cores and 4th generation Tensor cores, both of which bring insane improvements. This architecture is 4x faster in ray-tracing and has a 2x uplift in performance/watt compared to Ampere. NVIDIA says ray tracing performance has improved 16x over just four years in contrast to Turing. The company is also launching the all-new DLSS 3 that’s exclusive to Ada Lovelace.

RTX 4080 16GB

Starting off, we have the RTX 4080 16GB aimed at gamers as well as enthusiasts. Packed with 16GB of GDDR6X memory over a 256-bit bus, the effective bandwidth stands at a whopping 720GB/s. Such insane bandwidth can be achieved thanks to the 22.5Gb/s memory which is 20% faster than last-gen. The RTX 4080 16GB is equipped with the state of the art AD103 GPU and 9,728 CUDA Cores for that extra compute chops.

The raw FP32 compute performance stands at 50TFLOPS which is 20% higher than the RTX 3090 Ti. NVIDIA has improved their clock speeds significantly due to TSMC‘s N4 (5nm) process node. As a result, the RTX 4080 16GB clocks up to 2.51GHz. This behemoth packs a punch and to top it off, it consumes just 320W of power.

RTX 4080 (both variants) vs. RTX 3080 Ti

You can see the gaming performance of both RTX 4080 flavors above and how they compare to the RTX 3080 Ti. On average, even the weaker 12GB variant of the RTX 4080 is about as fast as the RTX 3090 Ti in current-gen games. NVIDIA did not provide any numbers for professional applications, but all RTX 40-series GPUs have new 8th generation dual NVENC encoders with AV1 support.

Priced at $1199, you get 2x the performance of an RTX 3080 Ti for the same price. The RTX 4080 16GB will go on sale by November, with no word on pre-order information. 

RTX 4080 12GB

For gamers on a slightly lower budget, NVIDIA introduced the RTX 4080 12GB. Don’t let the lower VRAM configuration fool you, as this GPU knocks the daylight out of the RTX 3080 while being priced nearly similar. Shipping with 12GB of GDDR6X memory running across a 256-bit bus grants an effective bandwidth of 672GB/s.

Packed with NVIDIA’s cutting-edge AD103 GPU, expect no compromise in terms of gaming performance. The CUDA Core count is slightly lower than its 16GB brother, standing at 7680 CUDA cores. Surprisingly, this GPU clocks higher than its 16GB counterpart at 2.61GHz with base clock speeds of 2.31GHz

RTX 4080 | NVIDIA

In terms of power draw, it has a 285W TDP which puts it in a very enticing position as most gamers will not need to upgrade their PSUs in order to kit their systems with this GPU. Coming in at $899, the RTX 4080 will hit the shelves in November, launching side by side with the RTX 4080 16GB.

Design & Aesthetics

Coming to the design of the GPU, we see that the RTX 4080 FE (Founders Edition) ships with a design almost identical to its last-Gen counterpart. The only difference lies in the logo and the fan size. NVIDIA’s new branding has seen mixed reactions throughout the community. The main culprit is the new NVIDIA Sans NALA font which reduces the thickness of the text. 

More importantly, however, the RTX 4080 12GB variant has no Founder’s Edition card, while the other two 40-series GPUs do. This begs the question of whether the RTX 4070 will get a FE or not. Regardless, there’s a 10% increase in fan size and fin volume in the heatsink, and NVIDIA has upgraded to a 23-phase power supply for better stability.

RTX 4090 Founder’s Edition | NVIDIA

Speaking of power, the RTX 40-series is ATX 3.0 compatible which means it features 16-pin PCIe Gen5 power connectors, with a single connector capable or providing up to 600W of power. That being said, the GPU itself is still PCIeGen4.

AIBs have already started to announce their designs for the RTX 40-series so expect cards from the likes of ASUS, Colorful, Gainward, Galaxy, GIGABYTE, INNO3D, MSI, Palit, PNY, and ZOTAC to hit the market with custom cooling and power specs very soon. OEM system from Dell, HP, Acer, and more will also be shipping after launch.

It seems as if the RTX 4080 12GB variant was really supposed to be the RTX 4070 but the Green Team switched it up last-minute. Compared to the 16GB variant, the 4080 12GB seems like a minor upgrade. On the other hand, the fully-spec’d RTX 4080 seems like the sweet spot for unparalleled performance at a decent power threshold and affordable price tag.

NVIDIA also launched the RTX 4090 alongside the 4080. The company’s new BFGPU is up to 4x faster than the RTX 3090 and is priced at only $100 higher than its predecessor at $1599. Unlike the RTX 4080s, the RTX 4090 does have a concrete release date set for 12th October, 2022.

Huzaifa Haroon
Born and raised around computers, Huzaifa is an avid gamer and a keyboard enthusiast. When he's not solving the mysteries of technology, you can find him scrutinizing writers, striving to inform the curious.