Gamers can probably skip Nvidia’s RTX 3090 when it lands tomorrow. Surprisingly, the $1,499 graphics card is only 10 to 15 percent faster than the RTX 3080 when it comes to 4K gaming.
The company revealed the stat in a Wednesday post, which offers some benchmarks on 3D rendering. The RTX 3090 does offer a sizable “up to 50” performance gain compared to last generation’s Titan RTX card, which originally retailed for $2,499 when it arrived two years ago.
But for most PC gamers, you’re better off saving your money, and instead spending it on the $699 RTX 3080 (assuming you can find one). You should only consider the RTX 3090 if you own an expensive 8K monitor; according to Nvidia, the RTX 3090 is the first GPU to fully support 8K HDR gaming for an insane 7,680-by-4,320-pixel resolution.
Of course, the $1,499 card was never meant for mainstream gamers. It’s better geared for software developers, data scientists, and graphic artists who need a powerful GPU to create their projects.
“Rendering in these types of applications not only requires a more powerful GPU. It requires more GPU memory,” the company wrote in the post. “Creators using the GeForce RTX 3090 will find that they can work with datasets that are more than twice as large as those that will fit into the memory of the GeForce RTX 3080.”
Indeed, the RTX 3090 comes with 24GB of GDDR6X memory—far more than the mere 10GB in the RTX 3080.
Unfortunately, the RTX 3090 is poised to be hard to obtain tomorrow. “We want to apologize upfront that this will be in limited supply on launch day. We know this is frustrating, and we’re working with our partners to increase the supply in the weeks to come,” Nvidia added.
We’re hoping the company can avoid a repeat of what happened to the RTX 3080, which had a rocky rollout last week. A flood of traffic forced Nvidia’s website to go offline before it was overrun with bots from resellers, who managed to buy the Founders Edition of the product before average consumers.
Nvidia has since upgraded its online store to stop bots from buying up the inventory. Nevertheless, many resellers are preparing to try and snatch up the product tomorrow with the goal of selling it at inflated prices.
Nvidia plans on notifying interested customers via email once the Founders Edition RTX 3090 becomes available on its website. Other RTX 3090 models are going to be available at other retailers, including Amazon and Best Buy.