Nvidia RTX 3080 Review

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In early May 2020 Nvidia's CEO, Jensen Huang, was seen standing in his kitchen while cooking. From that point he pulled something from his oven. The “dish” he revealed from his oven contained Nvidia’s next generation architecture, Ampere and the A100 GPU. A few days later Jensen Huang properly introduced the groundbreaking A100, yes from his actual kitchen, and from that point gamers waited patiently for Nvidia’s next GPU reveal based on the Ampere architecture.

Later in September 2020 Nvidia’s CEO stated that the RTX 3000 series will be the “greatest generational leap in company history” so naturally we had to know more. The first thing everyone was concerned about with the RTX 3000 series was the price and if Nvidia could deliver on the price and performance. Little did we know that a RTX 3070 priced at $500 would match a previously released flagship RTX 2080 Ti which retailed for $1,200+. The price for 3rd party RTX 2080 Ti’s were well above $1,200 in some cases so a cheaper alternative sounded great, well at least it sounded great at the time. Limited supplies and ridiculous price markups ruined the initial launch and many months after the RTX 3080 released. It is an ongoing issue. This limited supply release has also affected RTX 3070 and 3090, but more on that later in this article.

That also meant that the next tier, the flagship RTX 3080, would be even more powerful than the RTX 2080 Ti. We can comfortable say after many reviews have been released that the GTX 3080 is roughly 30% faster than the RTX 3070 & RTX 2080 Ti which makes the RTX 3000 series even more exciting. The expensive RTX 3090 ($1,499) is aimed at prosumers with workloads outside of gaming. The 3090 leaves Nvidia with a ton of space to place their inevitable RTX 3080 “Ti” variant.

Lack Of Competition

Back in 2016 AMD decided to tackle the majority of gamers in the “mainstream” market, or in other words gamers who didn’t spend more than $300 on a GPU. This left Nvidia in control of the high-end GPU tier market throughout the RTX 1000 and 2000 series. This different pace in the high-end market lead to GPUs, such as the Nvidia 2080 Ti, being released at $1,199. This lack of competition also caused the GPU market to stagnate over the years. During these years Nvidia sandbagged and didn’t feel the need to compete unless they had to. Nvidia basically matched the competition until AMD could catch up while profiting.

These actions also lead to practices and releases such as the “Super” (RTX 20xx SUPER) variants being release. This kept Nvidia GPUs within arm’s length reach of AMD in the high, mid and low tier GPU markets. The Super variants did contain architectural improvements as well as more CUDA cores and higher clocks and so on. This gave Nvidia time to get their concurrent workloads under wrap which was something that their GTX 1000 series struggled with. Nvidia GPUs now perform well in DX12 and Vulkan titles that leveraged Async Compute workloads at the hardware level. So Nvidia did use their time wisely during AMDs late to market high-end GPU market releases, the Vega series & Radeon VII releases. You can read more about AMDs late to market Vega series here and several reasons why AMD was late to match the competition from Nvidia by clicking here.

X58 + RTX 3080 YouTube Review

I created my second YouTube review video for those who would like to see a compressed version of this article. I cover several games and topics.