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NVIDIA RTX 3070 Vs. NVIDIA RTX 3080 – Choose the Right One?

The newest series for graphics cards from Nvidia is probably the best series of cards revealed so far with many powerful options available within an attractive budget range. The RTX 30 series cards from Nvidia have proven to be the best options for a lot of gamers as well as content creators with their superior power capacity and speed. However, more options create more confusion, especially for those who are building a custom gaming computer for the first time.

Today, we will be looking at the most popular pair of graphics cards from Nvidia right now that are RTX 3070 and 3080. Even though these cards might look familiar in terms of design, you need to thoroughly consider the specification and performance aspects before you make a decision. In this guide, we will take a look at the various parameters of these graphics cards as well as compare them based on different applications. We can assure you that you can make a decision by the time you finish our guide.


GeForce RTX 3070

NVIDIA RTX 3070 is one of the high-end options offered by Nvidia that is suitable for almost all types of applications. Launched back in Sept. 2020, NVIDIA RTX 3070 has been continuously out of stock on almost all official platforms due to its high demand. The NVIDIA RTX 3070 is based on an 8 nm processor and operates on the GA104 graphics processor to offer high-quality output. This GPU will offer you support for Directx 12 ultimate with the GA104-300-A1 variant.

With such powerful specifications, you can expect almost all high-end games released so far in the industry as well as games that will be arriving within the next 4 to 5 years. As this graphics card is part of the RTX series, you will have the advantage of the latest features such as ray tracing, variable shaders, DLSS, and much more.

Coming back to the specifications of the NVIDIA RTX 3070, it offers nearly 17400 million transistors present within the die area of merely 390 sq. mm. As the 3070 car is the more affordable variant compared to the 3070 Ti, Nvidia is offering a lower number of shaders on the 3070 compared to 3070 Ti which operates with all 6144 shaders. There are 5888 shader units available on the NVIDIA RTX 3070 along with 184 texture mapping units and 96 ROPs.

As for the RTX support, it is backed by 184 tensor cores that help a lot even for AI and machine learning-based applications. The NVIDIA RTX 3070 graphics card has 8 GB of DDR6 memory paired with 3 DisplayPorts and 1 HDMI port.



Unlike our previous choice, the NVIDIA RTX 3080 is built for those who simply want to get the best performance at all costs. This is one of the most high-end and premium class graphics cards from Nvidia. Launched alongside NVIDIA RTX 3070 back in Sept. 2020, the NVIDIA RTX 3080 has also managed to stay out of stock until even right now due to its high demand. This graphics card is also built with an 8 nm processor and works with the GA102 graphics processor.

Similar to most high-end cards from Nvidia, you will find the DirectX12 ultimate support with the NVIDIA RTX 3080 which ensures complete reliability for gaming-focused builds. The GA102 processor used on the NVIDIA RTX 3080 is 628 sq. mm in size and equipped with 28300 million transistors. While the large size of the processor does make the card gigantic in size, it certainly justifies it in terms of performance.

The NVIDIA RTX 3080 has 8704 shaders active at all times with 272 mapping units and 96 RPOs. Also, you will find a higher number of tensor cores on the NVIDIA RTX 3080 that makes it even more powerful for RTX as well as AI-based features. This GPU has 272 tensor cores and 68 dedicated ray-tracing cores. To make the card perfect for the heavy application, NVIDIA has offered 10 GB of DDR5 RAM on the RTX 3080.

The NVIDIA RTX 3080 is a dual-slot card and draws power from a 12-pin power input connector. Thus, the maximum power draw of the NVIDIA RTX 3080 can be as high as 320 watts at full load. Coming to the ports, the NVIDIA RTX 3080 is equipped with an HDMI port alongside 3 DisplayPorts for high bandwidth connections.

NVIDIA RTX 3070 Vs. RTX 3080

After reading the brief introduction about both graphics cards, you must have realized some key differences between both of these options. If you want a quick recap, here are the major differences between RTX 3070 and RTX 3080.

Parameters RTX 3080 RTX 3070
MSRP $699 $499
Nvidia CUDA Cores 8704 5888
Boost Clock 1.71 GHz 1.73 GHz
Memory Size 10 GB 8 GB
Memory Type GDDR6X GDDR6
Tensor Cores 272 184
Ports 3xDisplayPort 1.4a, 1xHDMI 2.1 3xDisplayPort 1.4, 1xHDMI
Power Connection 2×8-pin 2×8-pin
Maximum Supported Resolution 7680×4320 @60Hz 7680 x 4320 @60Hz
Power Rating 320 watts 220 watts

Major Differences between RTX 3070 and RTX 3080

So far, you must have understood how RTX 3070 and RTX 3080 differ on paper based on specifications. But, to understand the differences in both options in terms of actual application, you have to pay attention to every individual aspect carefully. Here, we are listing some of the most important sectors where the technical differences between these graphics cards matter a lot.

1. Power Draw

Power draw basically refers to the electrical power required to use the graphics card. As we are looking at the high-end options from Nvidia, you should already expect a pretty high power requirement. Still, the difference in power rating for these 2 options is pretty big. The RTX 3080 is rated at 320 watts whereas the RTX 3070 is rated at 220 watts.

This 100 watts difference can be pretty noticeable in real-life applications. First of all, a high power draw means better performance and speed. But, it also means higher temperature levels. Also, the power rating of your GPU must be manageable by the PSU that you are going to use in your build.

2. Memory Size

The memory size of a graphics card, commonly known as video memory, is also a very important aspect and must be considered before buying one. Within RTX 3070 and RTX 3080, there is only 2 GB of difference for the memory size. The RTX 3080 is offering 10 GB of memory whereas RTX 3070 only offers 8 GB.

While the memory size of a graphics card does not have a direct impact on its performance, it still impacts the range of applications possible with it. For example, if you are playing a demanding game that requires high video memory, you are better off with a graphics card that can compensate for it if you want to get stable performance.

3. Tensor Cores

The tensor cores are one of the latest technological marvels designed by Nvidia that is available with their latest series of RTX cards. These cores utilize mixed-precision computing technology to dynamically adapt to the process and offer a faster output. This results in a much faster performance along with better accuracy. Nvidia has implemented the Tensor cores to implement the deep learning super sampling technology which upscales the image without loss in performance or visuals.

With the RTX 3080, you will get 272 tensor cores whereas the RTX 3070 only offers 184 cores. Naturally, the DLSS, as well as the AI-based performance of the RTX 3080, is going to be significantly better than the RTX 3070 due to the difference in tensor cores. However, RTX 3070 still offers great performance for its price.

4. Price and availability

Coming to a major factor, the price and availability of the unit. This is always sort of an issue with graphics cards as you barely find a variant that is available at MSRP. And due to the recent shortage of components and stock issues, finding a decent graphics card is harder than ever.

Most options are either heavily overpriced or unavailable for the foreseeable future. In such a case, you need to pay close attention to the MSRP of the unit and how much you end up paying for it. Also, you might have to wait for a particular option to come back in stock whereas the other one is about to run out of it.

Which Graphics Card is Better For 4K?

4K gaming is no longer a myth and certainly seems possible with the new lineup of graphics cards. If you are also looking for a high-end graphics card that can offer an enjoyable FPS at 4K resolution, the RTX 3080 seems to be the obvious choice. However, you will have to spend a couple of hundred bucks more as well as make sure that your PC can handle the graphics card. While both of these options can offer about 60 FPS at 4K for most games, RTX 3080 increases the bar by up to 50 FPS, even on some demanding games. Here is a 4K gaming comparison between both cards for reference.

Games Average Frames Per Second
  RTX 3080 RTX 3070
Total War: Three Kingdoms 100 75
Final Fantasy XV 85 70
Monster Hunter: World 85 66
Assassins Creed : Valhalla 65 59
Metro Exodus 95 75
Cyberpunk 2077 55 45

Which Graphics Card is Better For 1440p?

1440p resolution is still a better choice for a lot of players. This is the QHD 2560 x 1440p resolution which offers a much higher detail compared to 1080p resolution without a significant loss in performance. Even if you are playing at 1440p resolution on a 4K TV or monitor, you are less likely to notice any downgrade compared to the 1080p resolution for the same display.

1440p resolution is quite popular among desktop gamers as there are special desktop monitors designed for the resolution. An RTX 3070 is definitely a good enough choice for a 1440p resolution. While an RTX 3080 will still offer higher FPS in comparison, you will find the results of RTX 3070 pretty satisfying.

Games Average Frames Per Second (Ultra Settings)
  RTX 3080 RTX 3070
Total War: Three Kingdoms 92 71
Final Fantasy XV 100 92
Monster Hunter: World 106 83
Assassins Creed : Valhalla 70 63
Metro Exodus 99 81
Cyberpunk 2077 73 54


Apart from gaming and other productive applications, one of the most popular reasons to buy a graphics card right now is cryptocurrency mining. The recent rise in cryptocurrency has introduced a never-before-seen shortage of graphics cards. To even the odds, Nvidia introduced LHR or lite hash rate technology on its recent cards. In simpler words, this technology allows GPUs to detect whether they are being used for cryptocurrency mining. If it does, it reduces the hash rate by half, making the mining process less profitable.

This makes the cryptocurrency miners buy more expensive GPUs or dedicated mining cards in order to achieve profit in the process. The main idea behind this technology was to make the cards a secondary choice for cryptocurrency miners and make them readily available for gamers. Both RTX 3080 and RTX 3070 graphics cards are equipped with LHR technology. Therefore, you might want to reconsider your options if you are planning to use the GPU for mining.

Ray Tracing and DLSS

Ray tracing is also one of the latest features announced from Nvidia which makes new generation games even more realistic in terms of visuals. There are 2 major features introduced with the RTX cards that are ray tracing and DLSS. Ray tracing is a very demanding feature that traces the light from its original source in a frame and follows it to render the image. This results in extremely realistic lighting effects as well as shadows.

The ray-tracing generally tanks the FPS in almost every game as the GPU usage goes very high in certain situations. To help with that, Nvidia has also introduced DLSS or deep learning super sampling technology. This is a smart upscaling technology that uses the AI cores of the GPU to upscale the footage. Thus, the graphics processor renders the images at a faster rate at 1080p resolution and offers nearly identical 4K upscaled results compared to native 4K, minus the FPS drop.

Cooling, Power Demand, and Form Factor

These are some more important factors that you need to consider before you make a choice. High power graphics cards might offer attractive performance and specifications, but it also generates more heat and requires more power to operate. For that, your computer must be equipped with a highly efficient cooling system. We recommend a liquid cooling setup if you are planning to overclock the graphics card. Otherwise, the cooling solution provided with the GPU is good enough.

The power demand should also be supported by your PSU. If not, you will notice sudden crashes in your game as well as on your PC. If the GPU does not get sufficient power, it lowers the clock speed to manage the power levels. If the power input drops further, the GPU stops working and causes a crash. Another important factor is the size of the GPU. Even the most premium GPU will be of no use to you if you cannot fit it inside your cabinet. You should always check the dimensions of the GPU and compare them with your cabinet before buying it.


A lot of users seem to be confused between the Nvidia RTX 3070 and RTX 3080 graphics cards. While both options are high-end options designed by Nvidia, we will strongly recommend getting your hands on the RTX 3080 graphics card. Even though it is slightly more expensive, it is going to offer pretty good results while gaming at 4K and obviously, at 1440p resolution. Also, this GPU is completely future-proof and will be suitable for nearly a decade of upcoming video games. And if you are looking for a middle ground between these options, you should check out the RTX 3070 Ti GPU from Nvidia.

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