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RTX 4090 vs. 3080 Ti: Full Comparison and Specs

NVIDIA 3080-Ti graphics card

RTX 4090 vs. 3080 Ti: Full Comparison and Specs

NVIDIA’s Ada Lovelace architecture for its GPUs has proven to be a top performer when it comes to gaming, rendering, and working. How does the flagship GPU for Ada, the RTX 4090, stack up against a high-end RTX 3080 Ti from the previous Ampere line? The previous RTX 3080 Ti served as a midpoint between the flagship RTX 3090, which pales in comparison to its successor. Whether you’re looking to upgrade or you’re ready for a new build, this guide will help shed some light on these two high-end GPUs. Factors considered are overall specs, performance in gaming, and performance in other fields of work. Let’s look at these two powerful GPUs, the RTX 4080 and 3080 Ti, and decide which one is the right choice for your next build.

RTX 4090 vs. 3080 Ti: Side-By-Side Comparison

RTX 4090 vs RTX 3080 Ti
RTX 4090RTX 3080 Ti
CUDA Cores1638410240
Core Clock Speed2235MHz1370MHz
Boost Clock Speed2520MHz1667MHz
Manufacturing Process4nm8nm
TDP450watt350watt
InterfacePCI-Express 4.0 x 16PCI-Express 4.0 x 16
Memory TypeGDDR6XGDDR6X
Maximum VRAM24GB12GB
Memory Bus Width384-bit384-bit
Memory Clock Speed21000MHz19000MHz
Memory Bandwidth1,008GB/s912.4GB/s
Display Connectors1 HDMI 2.1, 3 DisplayPort 1.4a1 HDMI, 3 DisplayPort

RTX 4090 vs. RTX 3080 Ti: What’s the Difference?

These two GPUs share some similarities in terms of overall specs. However, where they sharply depart is in performance. The RTX 4090 and 3080 Ti both occupy a similar market niche, intended for those who aren’t afraid of spending more for a powerful GPU. The difference between the two GPUs is quite astonishing, with this being one of the more significant generational leaps in several years.

Performance

While it doesn’t come as much of a surprise, the RTX 4090 leads this category. The 4090 surpassed the RTX 3080 Ti in just about every possible metric one can think of. Further, synthetic and real-world benchmarks have the RTX 4090 doing so with minimal effort.

Passmark, a popular synthetic benchmark, has the RTX 4090 score 100 points on its test versus the 69.51 points scored by the RTX 3080 Ti. This particular benchmark is a great litmus test for GPUs because it tests performance at DirectX 9, 10, 11, and 12, with the ultimate tests being done at 4K resolution.

Games also see a noted departure between the two GPUs. Graphically demanding games like Cyberpunk 2077 are where things become most noticeable. The RTX 3080 Ti at 4K resolution with CD Projekt RED’s ultra preset registers in with a respectable 50 frames per second. The RTX 4090, on the same test, brings it to 78 frames per second. Those 28 frames might not seem huge for most things, but for a game like Cyberpunk 2077, it is the difference between just playable and actual smooth gameplay.

Far Cry 6 has been the subject of controversy for its poor performance with most hardware. Here, with the RTX 4090, it gets a consistent 139 frames per second. In contrast, the RTX 3080 Ti on the same game nets 120 frames per second. Not a substantial increase, but still noticeable.

Power Consumption

One area where the RTX 4090 falters is in overall power consumption. It is far from what you could call power efficient. By comparison, the RTX 3080 Ti does well, its maximum power consumption of 350 watts is significantly lower than that of the RTX 4090. However, this is the only area where the 3080 Ti excels, as in a multitude of games and benchmarks the RTX 4090 was performing at nearly twice the speed.

Pricing

The RTX 4090 is significantly more expensive than other GPUs in the market. Part of this is recency, as the RTX 3080 Ti is over years old now. Certainly, you can’t really expect the previous generation of GPUs to command the same MSRP it held at launch times. The RTX 4090 is an expensive GPU, retailing for anywhere between $1000 to $1300 more than the RTX 3080 Ti.

Budgeting also extends to other components of a build featuring these two GPUs. The RTX 4090 is going to need a powerful power supply to keep up with how demanding it is. That said, if you’re purchasing an RTX 4090, a 1000-watt power supply is probably well within budget.

Budget Pick
Geforce RTX 3080 Ti Graphics Card
$1,119.99
  • 12GB GDDR6X Memory
  • 19,000MHz memory clock speed
  • Enhanced Tensor and RT Cores for a super fast gaming experience
  • Scored 69.51 points on Passmark's benchmark test
We earn a commission if you make a purchase, at no additional cost to you.
02/25/2024 01:14 pm GMT

RTX 4090 vs. 3080 Ti: Must-Know Facts

Facts about the RTX 4090

  • Most powerful consumer-grade GPU on the market
  • Has triple the available transistors of the RTX 3080 Ti
  • Doubles the texture fill rate of the RTX 3080 Ti

Facts about the RTX 3080 Ti

  • More readily available at cheaper prices
  • More power efficient while gaming
  • Capable of 4K gaming and VR

RTX 4090 vs. 3080 Ti: Which One is Better? Which One Should You Choose?

To the surprise of no one, the overall winner is the RTX 4090. It is a vastly more expensive card, but it is such a massive generational leap that it justifies the price. This isn’t a GPU for everyone, but those who can afford it will see fantastic results in a variety of games. The RTX 4090 is simply on a whole other level compared to its forebears.

That doesn’t mean the RTX 3080 Ti is a bad GPU by any appreciable measure. For those with a stricter budget that are still after an exemplary performer, it will do rather well. It still more than outclasses current titles and can handle 4K gaming at high presets with some setting adjustments.

  1. Geforce RTX 3080 Ti Graphics Card
    $1,119.99
    • 12GB GDDR6X Memory
    • 19,000MHz memory clock speed
    • Enhanced Tensor and RT Cores for a super fast gaming experience
    • Scored 69.51 points on Passmark's benchmark test
    Buy on Amazon

    We earn a commission if you make a purchase, at no additional cost to you.

    02/25/2024 01:14 pm GMT

Frequently Asked Questions

Can the RTX 4090 handle VR?

The RTX 4090 more than handles VR. During testing, there was very little thrown at the RTX 4090 where it didn’t excel. It makes sense when you think about it. However, this is the most advanced commercial GPU NVIDIA has ever produced. It thoroughly outclasses everything it is competing against.

 

Is the RTX 3080 Ti able to play Modern Warfare 2?

The RTX 3080 Ti can more than handle Modern Warfare 2. The latest Call of Duty is a graphically demanding game, but gamers with an RTX 3080 Ti are breezing through it. Infinity Ward has had a fair amount of time to polish their flagship engine to a gleam, so the more power you have, the more graphical odds and ends you can turn on. Ray-tracing turns Modern Warfare 2 into a visual treat, and gamers will no doubt delight in the extreme detail and care put towards every element of the game.

Is the RTX 4090 better than the RTX 3080 Ti?

If price isn’t a consideration, yes. The RTX 4090 outperforms the RTX 3080 Ti in every conceivable performance metric. It isn’t nearly as power efficient, but in terms of raw numbers, the RTX 4090 trounces its competition. Games perform almost twice as fast with the RTX 4090 and synthetic benchmarks show much the same.

The RTX 4090 is such a massive leap in terms of generational improvement that is simply astounding. It has been years since such an improvement on a previous generation of hardware was released. What this means for NVIDIA GPUs from now on is anyone’s guess, but it’ll certainly be interesting to see if their next flagship card fully dethrones the RTX 4090 in terms of performance leaps.

Can the RTX 4090 handle the Dead Space Remake?

The Dead Space Remake is a very demanding title, but the RTX 4090 can more than handle it. Performance might pale in comparison to some more finely tuned games, but if you’re looking for playable frame rates with great visuals, it should do the trick.

Will prices come down on the RTX 4090?

With time, absolutely. The RTX 4090 is expensive because it is a flagship GPU on top of being fairly recently released. If you’re after cost-effective GPUs, a flagship might not be the most ideal choice.

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