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Nvidia GeForce RTX 3080 tested: 5 key things you need to know

Nvidia GeForce RTX 3080 tested: 5 key things you need to know


The GeForce RTX 3080 is a monster.

Nvidia promised that the Ampere GPU-powered RTX 30-series GPUs would be the company’s “greatest generational leap” ever, and it wasn’t exaggerating. The $699 GeForce RTX 3080 Founders Edition absolutely demolishes its predecessors in performance while working in all sorts of technological advances. It’s one of the best graphics card upgrades we’ve seen in a long, long time.

You can read every nitty-gritty detail in our comprehensive review of Nvidia’s GeForce RTX 3080 Founders Edition. But if you don’t feel like sifting through thousands of words of technical and testing details, here are the five key things you need to know.

1. It’s staggeringly fast

Nvidia’s GeForce RTX 3080 Founders Edition whups on everything that came before it. If you want to clear 60 frames per second at 4K or test the limits of a 144Hz, 1440p monitor with every visual setting cranked to the maximum, this is the card you want (unless you’re holding out for the 8K-capable $1,500 GeForce RTX 3090 coming next week, that is).

borderlands 3 Brad Chacos/IDG

The GeForce RTX 3080 is over 80 percent faster than the RTX 2080 in Borderlands 3.

The GeForce RTX 3080 is over 80 percent faster than the identically priced RTX 2080 in several games at 4K resolution, and over 60 percent faster in the rest. The only game that falls below those lofty marks is Grand Theft Auto V, but that’s because the RTX 3080 is so fast, it’s pushing the limits of the game engine even when the GPU needs to push all those pixels at 4K. It’s 25 to 30 percent faster than even the RTX 2080 Ti, last generation’s $1,200 flagship.

hzd Brad Chacos/IDG

The GeForce RTX 3080 is over 80 percent faster than the RTX 2080 at 4K in Horizon Zero Dawn, but as you can see above, “only” 62 percent faster at 1440p.

The GeForce RTX 3080 FE blows away the RTX 2080 at 1440p too. The lead actually diminishes a bit, because this card being so fast that even an Intel CPU overclocked to 5GHz struggles to feed frames to it fast enough. It’s an excellent option for a 3440×1440 ultrawide monitor that splits the difference between 1440p and 4K, though, as you’ll see in our follow-up testing later this week.

rtx sotr 4k Brad Chacos/IDG

Shadow of the Tomb Raider at 4K resolution with ray tracing and DLSS enabled. It easily clears 60 fps.

Say goodbye to concerns about lowered resolution in ray traced games, which plagued the original generation of RTX GPUs. In the handful of ray traced games we tested with Nvidia’s Deep Learning Supersampling (DLSS) technology active, playing at 1440p and even 4K at over 60 fps is possible with the cutting-edge lighting technologies enabled.

Bottom line? The RTX 3080 screams.



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