The RTX 3080 gaming laptop is more expensive than the RTX 3070 model, but is it worth it? If you’re still unsure, I’ve tested both in games and compared their thermals, power consumptions, battery life, and more to help you make a decision!
SPECS: RTX 3070 vs RTX 3080
|RTX 3070||RTX 3080|
|GPU||GA104 – 8NM||GA104-8NM|
|BOOST CLOCK [MHZ]||1290-1620||1245-1710|
|MEMORY||8GB GDDR6||8GB/16GB GDDR6|
|MEMORY SPEED||14 GBPS||14 GBPS|
|MEMORY BANDWIDTH||448 GB/S||448 GB/S|
The RTX 3080 has 20% more CUDA cores and the same memory speed as the RTX 3070, and while both cards can have 8 GB of GDDR6 memory, the 3080 also has a 16 GB option. The 3080 has a faster boost clock speed, but this is due to the higher maximum power limit, which varies depending on the laptop.
LAPTOP TEST SPECS
|LAPTOP MODEL||XMG NEO 15||Eluktronics MECH-15 G3|
|GPU||RTX 3070||RTX 3080 16GB|
|PROCESSOR||RYZEN 7 5800H||RYZEN 9 5900HX|
|RAM||16GB DDR4-3200||16GB DDR4-3200|
Both laptops have an 8-core Ryzen processor, but the 3080 has a higher-tier 5900HX, which doesn’t really matter. Because both laptops have a MUX switch that can be used to turn off optimus and get the best performance, all testing has been done without it.
Both were also tested with the same physical memory kit installed, which included 16 GB of DDR4-3200 CL22 x8 memory in dual channel. Both laptops push their GPUs to their maximum power limits set by Nvidia. So the RTX 3070 gets 125 watts and can go up to 140 watts with dynamic boost, while the 3080 gets 150 watts and can go up to 165 watts with dynamic boost.
THERMALS / CLOCK SPEED / TDP
Under a combined CPU and GPU stress test, the CPU clock speeds of both laptops are about the same. While the 3080 GPU had a 110MHz advantage over the 3070 GPU.
Although the fans were maxed out, the CPU temperatures remained the same, and I believe thermal throttling was actually taking place despite the fact that this was a worst-case stress test. The 3080 was a little warmer than the 3070, just a couple of degrees under Nvidia’s thermal throttle limit.
Due to the 3080’s increased power consumption, the GPU is expected to overheat. There is a notable difference between CPU TDPs in the 3080 and the 3070 laptops, even though both were running at the same clock speed.
We can see that both GPUs can boost higher with dynamic boost if we stop the CPU stress test and just run a GPU stress test. As a result, the 3080 GPU runs a little hotter and clocks a little faster than the 3070 GPU.
Games have been tested at high settings, which are more dependent on the GPU, so the CPU difference shouldn’t be that big of a deal. Both of these laptops have 1440p screens, so we’ll also be looking at the 1080p resolution.
PERFORMANCE: RTX 3070 vs RTX 3080
I have tested 6 games at both 1080p and 1440p resolutions. So, let’s take a look at how well each GPU performs in various games.
Assassin’s Creed Valhalla
The game’s benchmark was used to test Assassin’s Creed Valhalla, and some of the major variances were found. The 3080 outperformed the 3070 by 16% at 1080p, the largest differential of all six games tested at this resolution, while 1440p yielded a close to 17% better FPS on the 3080.
Call of Duty: Warzone
Out of all 6 games evaluated, Call of Duty: Warzone had the most significant increases with a 3080. At 1080p, the 3080 has a 15% higher average frame rate than the 3070, while at 1440p, the 3080 has a 19% advantage over the 3070, the largest differential of any game at this resolution.
This game is normally GPU-intensive, yet at both resolutions, the performance gap between the two GPUs was less than the 6 game average. The 3080 has a 7% higher average frame rate at 1080p and an 11% higher average frame rate at 1440p.
On both laptops, Cyberpunk 2077 was tested in the same part of the game. The 3080 laptop has a 9% better average frame rate at 1080p, and a slightly bigger 12% boost at 1440p.
Watch Dogs Legion
I was intrigued about Watch Dogs Legion because the game’s benchmark advises that 8GB of VRAM isn’t quite enough at full settings, so I figured the 3080 would perform better because it has twice the VRAM capacity. The 3080 was roughly 6% faster at 1080p, while at 1440p, the 3080 had a 15 % higher average FPS, but the 1% low was also 38% higher with the 3080.
Microsoft Flight Simulator
On the other hand, the differences in Microsoft Flight Simulator were below average. At maximum settings 1440p, the 3070 maintained approximately 60 FPS, which isn’t awful at all. The 3080 has a 9% higher average FPS, albeit as we can see, this amounts to about 5 frames, given that the 3080 has a bigger 12% boost in the 1% low.
In general, I believe that the RTX 3070’s 8GB of VRAM will be plenty for most users. However, we did start to see the 16GB in the 3080 gain an advantage in select titles at 1440p max settings, such as the 1% lows in Watch Dogs Legion.
TOTAL SYSTEM POWER DRAW
In terms of total system power consumption from the wall, the 3080 laptop drew 22% more power in Control at 4K max settings. The 3080 achieved a 13% higher average FPS in this game, yet if we apply it to the best case scenarios, we get closer to 19%, but in general, the 3070 appears to be more power efficient.
Because both laptops have the same battery size, I was able to compare battery life fairly. The 3070 laptop lasted longer in a game, presumably because it is more power efficient, as we just witnessed; nevertheless, keep in mind that the 3080 laptop also boasts the more efficient 5900HX CPU.
It’s not just about gaming; let’s compare how both laptops perform in content creator workloads.
The 3080 was only a fraction of a second faster on the shorter Blender BMW test, but it was almost 7% faster on the longer Classroom test illustrated.
The 3080 scored nearly 14% better on the CUDA test, which makes logical given the 20% greater CUDA core count, however the ray tracing test only scored 5% higher on the 3080.
CONCLUSION: RTX 3070 or RTX 3080?
Obviously, the RTX 3080 performs better than the RTX 3070, but is it worth paying 18% more for? It might be if you have the funds and desire to improve your performance. In games, we were witnessing a performance improvement that was comparable to the cost increase in the best case scenario.
The RTX 3070 is a better value, and it can handle all of the games I threw at it, even at 1440p and higher setting levels. I believe the 3080 is the only alternative if you absolutely need 16GB of VRAM or need it for some other creative workload, but as previously stated, I think the 8GB in the 3070 or even 8GB in a 3080 would do for most people for a few years.