NVIDIA RTX 4080 12GB just 12% Faster than the RTX 3080, Slower than the 3090 Ti in Every Game

NVIDIA has released the first official performance figures of its RTX 4080 lineup. Unlike previous generations, the x80 Ada family is composed of two very different SKUs, misleadingly distinguished using their memory buffers. The 12GB variant is based on the AD104 die, which we all thought would power the RTX 4070, while the 16GB model features the AD103 die.

GPU GeForce RTX 4090 GeForce RTX 4080 16G GeForce RTX 4080 12G-> RTX 4070 Ti RTX 4070 GeForce RTX 3090 Ti
GPU Name AD102 AD103 AD104 AD104 GA102
SMs 128 76 60 46 80
FP32 Cores 16384 9728 7680 5888 10240
TMUs/ROPs 512 / 176 320 / 112 240 / 80 184/64 320 / 112
Tensor/RT Cores 512 / 128 304 / 76 240 / 60 184/46 320 / 80
Base Clock 2230 MHz 2210 MHz 2310 MHz 1365 MHz
Boost Clock 2520 MHz 2510 MHz 2610 MHz 1665 MHz
Memory Buffer 24 GB G6X 16 GB G6X 12 GB G6X 12GB G6X 24 GB G6X
Bus 384-bit 256-bit 192-bit 192-bit 384-bit
Memory Speed 21Gbps 23Gbps 21Gbps 21Gbps 19Gbps
Bandwidth 1008 GB/s 736 GB/s 504 GB/s 504GB/s 912 Gbps
L2 Cache 72MB 64MB 48MB 36MB 6MB
TBP 450W 320W 285W 250W 350W
MSRP $1599 $1199 $899 $649? $1199
Launch Oct 2022 Nov 2022 5th Jan 2023 3rd June 2021

The difference in memory buffers won’t affect real-world gaming performance by much. However, the differing core counts, bus widths, and the cache will nudge the 12GB SKU closer to the RTX 3080, essentially making it the successor to the 3070. NVIDIA’s official benchmarks show the RTX 3090 Ti beating the RTX 4080 12GB at native in all three titles. (valium) And you can be sure that these are cherry-picked examples showing the average, if not peak, raster gains.

The deltas between the two variants of the RTX 4080 are also rather glaring. The 16GB model is 23-28% faster than its twin in most cases, with DLSS 3 bringing it closer to 20%. There’s also a sizable deficit between the capabilities of the RTX 4090 and 4080 16GB. In some cases like Plague Tale Requiem, the former is nearly 2x faster at native, and 37% with DLSS 3 enabled.

We’ve never seen such a large deficit between the x80 and x90 offerings of a given GeForce family. With a price tag of $1,199, this makes the RTX 4080 16GB look like an even worse deal than its 12GB sibling. At $899, the cheaper variant offers a marginal improvement over the $699 RTX 3080, while the other barely manages to beat the now roughly $1,000 RTX 3090 Ti. These figures are derived from the frame rates at native resolution without DLSS 3 but let’s face it. You don’t wanna shell out a grand for a couple dozen supported titles.

Areej Syed

Processors, PC gaming, and the past. I have written about computer hardware for over seven years with over 5000 published articles. I started during engineering college and haven't stopped since. On the side, I play RPGs like Baldur's Gate, Dragon Age, Mass Effect, Divinity, and Fallout. Contact:
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