Especially the 3D rendering in Blender raced on the 720 euro expensive RTX 3080. She calculated the “classroom” scene in Blender 2.90 with Optix, more than twice as fast as the RTX 2080 and 44 percent faster than the fastest card to date, an overclocked GeForce RTX 2080 Ti.
In demanding games like Metro Exodus, the RTX 3080 managed a smooth 68 fps in 4K with ray tracing and DLSS, an RTX 2080 only 41. In lower resolutions, however, its lead is less. On average of the games tested, the card was 27 percent faster than an overclocked RTX 2080 Ti and was 74 percent ahead of an RTX 2080. AMD’s currently fastest card, the Radeon RX 5700 XT, is already in a completely different league in terms of price and is even further behind than the 2080.
The RTX 3080 is well ahead, partly because of its enormous computing power, but also because of the very fast 10 GByte GDDR6X memory of 760 GB / s. In 68 shader multiprocessors (SMs), almost 31.1 trillion computing steps per second (TFlops) run at 1785 MHz (OC mode 1815 MHz). Nvidia has doubled the FP32 shader cores for the GA102 graphics chip compared to the previous models to 128 per SM, and the geometry and pixel performance cannot quite keep up with the increase. The ray tracing and tensor cores also work faster and more recently also in parallel, which can further increase the frame rates.
Three DisplayPorts 1.4 and two HDMI 2.1 serve up to four high-resolution 4K screens simultaneously. If you already have 8K LCDs, you can operate two of them at 60 Hz at the same time. The integrated video encoders are identical to their predecessor, the decoder can now also handle the new AV1 codec up to 8K resolution.
The three fans on our Asus card stopped under low load and GPU temperatures below 55 degrees Celsius, so it worked silently. Under load, the “Quiet” position of the BIOS switch resulted in a loudness of 0.9 sone, a good value especially considering the high performance. In performance mode, the value shot up to a loud 2.3 sone, but brought only a little more performance. The idle power consumption was an acceptable 13 watts with a display. In two, however, the value has already doubled. Under load, the card drew up to 350 watts in Furmark – regardless of whether it was in quiet or performance mode – a good third more than the RTX 2080 Ti or 2080. Our measuring device hit up to 480 watts during brief peaks, which explains the manufacturer’s 750 watt power supply recommendation.
The price of the Asus TUF Gaming RTX 3080 OC looks like a good offer in view of the performance and compared to the very expensive previous generation, but 720 euros is still not a bargain. The even faster and much more expensive RTX 3090 with more memory will be coming soon and AMD will be putting its cards on the table at the end of October. If you are now in a hurry to replace your previous graphics card, you can use the quiet TUF Gaming RTX 3080 OC.
This article is from c’t 21/2020.