Nvidia RTX 4080 vs RTX 3080 vs RTX 3090: Which is Best?

RTX 4080 vs RTX 3080 vs RTX 3090

The RTX 4080 graphics card from Nvidia is a significant upgrade over the 3080 and 3090, but at $1200 USD, it is not a cheap graphics card. To determine whether the 4080 is valuable, I compared all three GPUs in 10 games at 4K, 1440p, and 1080p resolutions.

Specifications

RTX 3080RTX 3090RTX 4080
GPUGA102-8NMGA102 – 8NMAD103 – 4NM
CUDA/TENSOR/RT8704/272/6810496/328/829728/304/76
BOOST CLOCK1710MHZ1700MHZ2505MHZ
TGP320W350W320W
MEMORY10GB GDDR6X24GB GDDR6X16GB GDDR6X
MEMORY SPEED19 GBPS19.5 GBPS22.4 GBPS
MEMORY INTERFACE320-BIT384-BIT256-BIT
MEMORY BANDWIDTH760 GB/S936 GB/S716.8 GB/S
RELEASE DATESEP 2020SEP 2020NOV 2022
LAUNCH PRICE$700$1500$1200

Although the 3090 has the largest memory bus and most bandwidth, the 4080’s memory is clocked faster and has 16GB of VRAM compared to the 3090’s 24GB. The 4080 has the highest GPU clock speed, but it has fewer CUDA cores than the 3090, which has 8% more. The RTX 3080 and 4080 both have 320 watts of TGP, while the 3090 has 350 watts.


Price

While writing, the 10GB RTX 3080 goes for $740 USD, while the cheapest RTX 3090 at the moment is available from $1250, and the 4080 is selling at the launch price of $1200. RTX 4080 and RTX 3090 have almost similar price, and that’s the reason I comparing these GPUs.


Performance

Now I will show you the Benchmarks of all the games I have tested, but before that, take a look at my System Specifications:

  • CPU: Intel Core i9-13900K
  • RAM: 32GB DDR5 6000MHz
  • Motherboard: MSI Z690 Unify

At maximum settings in 4K on both 30 series GPUs, Watch Dogs Legion maintained a frame rate of around 60 FPS, but 4080 was astoundingly 20 FPS faster.

Only minor differences appeared in Far Cry 6 at the lower 1080p resolution. At 4K the 4080 was 20% ahead of the 3090, and 33% ahead of the 3080.

The 4080 also brought about some nice improvements for Red Dead Redemption 2. The results for 3080 and 3090 appear to be much more similar, with the 4080 clearly in the lead.

In addition, Forza Horizon 5 ran about 29% faster on the 4080 when compared to the 3090 at 4K, and 41% faster on the 4080 when compared to the 3080.

With the 4080, Halo Infinite typically had gains that were above average. At 4K, the 4080 achieves an average frame rate that is 43% higher than the 3080’s and 28% higher than the 3090’s.

At 1440p in Fortnite with the highest settings, the 4080 outperformed the 3080 by 30% and the 3090, a more expensive model, by 23%.

At the lower 1080p resolution, Microsoft Flight Simulator saw virtually no difference between the three GPUs, and even at 1440p, the 3090 and 4080 were still very similar.

At the lower 1080p resolution, Spider-Man Remastered was running at roughly the same frame rates on all three graphics cards.

Despite being 39% faster than the 3080 and 25% faster than the 3090, Apex Legends was still hitting the 300 FPS frame cap with the RTX 4080 at the lower 1080p resolution even with all settings at their highest.

With Cyberpunk 2077, the 4080 outperformed the 3090 by 26% at 4K, 28% at 1440p and 1080p.


Conclusion

Even though the RTX 3090 is still an excellent gaming GPU, purchasing it now, when the 4080 is less expensive, is simply not a good idea. The impact of the 4080’s release on 3090 pricing will be very interesting to watch, as the 3090’s price will need to drop significantly to remain competitive with the 4080. Naturally assuming that the 4080 remains available at fair prices.

Even though the 3090 has a 50% higher VRAM capacity than the 4080, which may be more advantageous in non-gaming workloads, it didn’t seem to matter in the 10 games tested here because the 4080 was still winning AAA games at 4K maximum settings.

Therefore, the 4080 simply makes more sense unless the price of the 3090 drops by a few hundred dollars. When compared to the 4080 and 3090, the 3080 still provides a better value and still performs admirably in games. Therefore, the decision will largely depend on whether you have the extra $500 or so in your budget to purchase a 3090 or 4080.

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