Want to know if the old generation of GPUs still holds up? The RTX 3090 vs Radeon 6800 XT comparison matters now more than ever, as gamers want to know if the new generation is worth it or if they can just get the best GPU from the last generation.
When a market is this competitive, sometimes it’s difficult to find the best product for your needs, and when the products are this good, it’s even harder.
So, with that in mind, we’ll review everything a gamer should know before buying either of these cards. Keep reading to find out which one’s the best bang for your buck!
RTX 3090 vs RX 6800 XT: Side-by-Side Comparison
Before we get more in-depth, let’s have a quick side-by-side of the specs we’ll be talking about.
|RX 6800 XT
|1x HDMI 2.1 + 3x DisplayPort 1.4a
|1 x HDMI 2.1 + 2x DisplayPort 1.4a + 1x USB Type-C
RTX 3090 vs RX 6800 XT: What’s the Difference?
While these cards came out in the same year, they’re bound to be different in many ways because different companies make them.
Generally, AMD always aims for affordability, while Nvidia tends to aim for maximum raw performance. This trend continues with these two GPUs, as you’ll see that the RTX 3090 is slightly more powerful but costs twice as much as the Radeon RX 6800 XT.
Still, even with this difference, you’ll have to read for yourself to make up your mind. So, let’s get into it!
Of course, the most important thing is always how the GPU works in practice. Let’s analyze the benchmarks. First of all, you should know that in classic benchmarks, like 3D Passmark, the RTX 3090 performs about 10% better than its competitor. The coin is flipped when talking about real in-game performance, but with a catch.
What’s the catch? The Radeon RX 6800 XT matches, and even surpasses, the FPS output of the RTX 3090 in most games, but only up to a 2K resolution. The RTX 3090 obliterates its competitor in 4K. Let’s look at some numbers so you get the idea.
In Far Cry 5, in Full HD resolution with the highest presets, the RX 6800 XT outputs an average of 130 FPS, and the RTX 3090 has an average of 177 FPS. In Assassin’s Creed Valhalla, the Radeon outputs 118 FPS, and the RTX 3090 just 90 FPS.
What we see here is basically a stalemate in performance when talking about 1080p gaming. But let’s look at 4k gaming, which is what these high-budget GPUs are geared for.
In 4K resolution with the highest presets, the RTX outputs 46 FPS in Cyberpunk 2077, whereas the Radeon RX 6800 XT does poorly, with just 30 FPS. If you look at Far Cry 5, the RX 6800 XT loses again with 95 FPS to the RTX’s 108 FPS.
So, on average, performance is similar, except when gaming in 4K. The RTX’s bigger VRAM and other features make it the clear winner there.
Let’s talk about some of the characteristics that make that difference in 4K gaming performance possible.
The world of high-end GPUs is made with high-resolution gaming in mind. Playing on a 2K or 4K screen is much more demanding than playing in 1080p, and thus requires much more memory for the card to process high-resolution textures and graphics.
With 24 GB of memory, the RTX 3090 bests the 6800 XT’s 16 GB of memory, which is the main reason for its better performance in high resolutions. You can still play highly demanding games like Call of Duty: Modern Warfare and Doom Eternal on the Radeon RX 6800 XT, but if you want the best of the best, the RTX 3090 is the clear winner here.
TDP and PSU Requirements
As you know, GPUs are generally the most power-hungry components of any PC, especially when talking about the most powerful cards on the market. It’s crucial to know your GPU’s expected power consumption, as you might need to get a more potent PSU for it.
The RTX 3090 has a TDP of 350W, whereas the RX 6800 XT has a TDP of 300W. The difference isn’t great, but it carries some consequences. The RTX 3090 has a suggested PSU of 750W and has only one combination of 12-pin connectors. The RX 6800 XT has a two 8-pin combo and a recommended PSU of 700W.
These factors make your PSU choice a critical point, as you’ll need to make sure you won’t fry your new card or that you won’t be able to install it due to a lack of pin connectors.
Of course, TDP is not only about power consumption but also about how much the card is expected to heat up. Modern manufacturers take care of this with great coolers and fans, so you don’t need to worry about either of these cards overheating.
Most models of both these cards come with three fans and a thick cooler, so you need to look up their size to ensure they’ll fit in your case.
The amount of display output ports in your GPU will determine how many displays you can run on a single card. In addition, the type and generation will affect what your monitor can display, such as high resolutions at high frame rates that only work with HDMI 2.1 or DisplayPort 1.3 or higher.
The RTX and the Radeon 6800 both have one HDMI 2.1 port. The RTX 3090 has three DisplayPort 1.4a ports, while the RX 6800 RT only has two. This is because the 6800 XT comes with a USB type-C port, which allows you to connect a VR headset to the card. The RTX 3090 does not include that.
Even without considering their different features, there is a substantial price difference between the Nvidia GeForce RTX 3090 and the AMD Radeon RX 6800 XT.
Web stores like Amazon sell the RX 6800 XT within the range of $649, while the RTX 3090 is in the $1,705 range. This is a major point in this comparison, as it’s likely that the RTX 3090 far exceeds the typical gamer’s budget.
Additionally, you should know that the Radeon RX 6800 XT can go on sale for as low as $599, whereas the RTX 3090 usually remains within its standard price range.
RTX 3090 vs RX 6800 XT: 3 Must-Know Facts
- The RX 6800 XT is one of the best entry-level graphics cards for 4K gaming due to its low price.
- Both of these cards came in 2020 and belong to the same generation.
- The RTX 3090 has an overall 10% better performance than the Radeon RX 6800 XT in high-resolution gaming, but it’ll cost you over twice as much.
RTX 3090 vs RX 6800 XT: Which One Is Better? Which One Should You Use?
When comparing these two GPUs with only their head-to-head specifications, The RTX 3090 is the most powerful, especially in 4K performance. However, you need to remember the enormous price difference.
If you’re a hardcore 4K gamer that needs 60 to 120 FPS in all games, you’ll want the RTX 3090. If you’re not willing to spend as much and are okay with playing some 4K games below 60 FPS, go for the RX 6800 XT.
As mentioned in this article, there are many characteristics to consider before buying a specific GPU, such as power consumption, price, size, memory, and more. With all this knowledge in mind, you only have to choose the best option for your budget and your system.
If you want to get into 4K and 2K gaming but don’t want to overspend, go for the Radeon RX 6800 XT. If you’re only comfortable with the best of the best and can afford a card that’ll set you back $1,700, we say go for the RTX 3090.
The image featured at the top of this post is ©Jack Skeens/Shutterstock.com.