NVIDIA launched its next-generation Ampere architecture of desktop GPUs on September 16th, 2020. Not all models in the GeForce RTX 30 Series lineup were released at this time, but they were at least talked about. At launch, the GeForce RTX 3080 Founders Edition was released with an MSRP of $699. However, this was not the top-end SKU or spec, in fact there existed one GeForce series video card atop it, the GeForce RTX 3090. We have finally got our hands on a GeForce RTX 3090 based video card today so that we can bring you our full review finally.
GeForce RTX 3090
Officially, the GeForce RTX 3090 was made available on September 24th, 2020 exactly one week after the GeForce RTX 3080 launched. Though, it had been talked about prior to this, being revealed at the beginning of that month. The official MSRP for the GeForce RTX 3090 is $1,499. That price separates it quite a bit from the $699 pricing of the GeForce RTX 3080. NVIDIA even calls this video card the “BFGPU” with TITAN class performance. Make no mistake though, it is a GeForce series video card and not a TITAN series. It is the top-end SKU for the GeForce RTX 30 series.
The GeForce RTX 3090 is based on the Ampere architecture and manufactured on Samsung 8nm; it uses the GA102 die. It has 2nd Generation RT Cores and 3rd Generation Tensor Cores supporting Ray Tracing and DLSS. The GeForce RTX 3090 has 82 SMs, 10,496 CUDA Cores, 328 TMUs, 112 ROPs, 82 RT Cores (2nd Gen), and 328 Tensor Cores (3rd Gen.) It operates with a boost clock of 1695MHz. It has 24GB of GDDR6X memory on a 384-bit bus at 19.5GHz providing 935.8GB/s of memory bandwidth. The TDP/TBP is 350W.
GIGABYTE GeForce RTX 3090 GAMING OC
For review today we have a fully custom add-in-board partner retail video card, the GIGABYTE GeForce RTX 3090 GAMING OC also known as GV-N3090GAMING OC-24GD. On GIGABYTE’s global webpage you will find all the GeForce RTX 3090 models they make. There are quite a few, and all of them have custom GIGABYTE coolers on them, none use the Founders Edition cooler configuration. The model we have to review today, the “GAMING OC” model is almost in the middle in terms of GPU Boost clock out of GIGABYTE’s offerings.
At the lower-end is the reference BOOST Clock EAGLE version, then there is a slightly higher boosted EAGLE OC version. Then we come to our version, the GAMING OC. Above that is a higher clocked MASTER version and XTREME version. There are even a couple of liquid-cooled versions at the very top, the rest are air-cooled like ours. The cooler on ours is a slightly varied version similar to the EAGLE variant. Our is a little more robust, but the MASTER and XTREME cards are even more altered.
Our GIGABYTE GeForce RTX 3090 GAMING OC carries a Boost Clock of 1755MHz set by GIGABYTE. This is in comparison to the reference boost clock of 1695MHz. This boost should help sustain a higher clock speed than the Founders Edition would. It still has the same 24GB of GDDR6X at 19.5GHz. This video card is large in size, do not underestimate the size for your case. It measures 12.5 inches in length, 5 inches in width, and 2.1 inches in height. For comparison, the Founders Edition is 12.3 inches in length, 5.4 inches in width, and also 3-slot.
The GIGABYTE GeForce RTX 3090 GAMING OC uses GIGABYTE’s WINDFORCE 3X Cooling System with alternate spinning fans. This system features 2x 90mm and 1x80mm unique blade fans. The airflow is split by a triangular fan edge and guided through the 3D stripe curve on the fan surface. Graphene nano lubricant is used to extend the life of sleeve-bearing fans by 2.1 times and is quieter. The blade fans alternate spinning. Alternate spinning fans can reduce turbulence of adjacent fans and increase air pressure. GIGABYTE uses GPU 3D active fan to provide semi-passive cooling, and the fans will remain off when the GPU is in low load or power.
The cooling system also uses 7 composite copper heat pipes and a large copper plate with direct contact with the GPU and VRAM for high-efficiency heat dissipation. The large copper plate combines the composite heat pipes to transfer heat generated from the interior cores to the heat sink. This video card uses GIGABYTE Screen Cooling which is an extended heatsink design that allows airflow to pass through the video card providing better heat dissipation. There is a full metal backplate for protection. It enhances the structure of the video card.
GIGABYTE has put a DUAL BIOS on this video card. There is a DUAL BIOS switch that switches from OC mode to Silent mode. The default mode is OC mode for full performance out of the box. This video card is built with extreme durability and overclocking ability. It uses a better power phase design to allow MOSFETs to operate at lower temperatures and over-temperature protection and load balancing for each MOSFET. It uses Ultra Durable certified chokes and capacitors. It has a friendly PCB design using a fully automated production process to ensure top-quality circuit boards and eliminate sharp protrusions. This video card requires 2x 8-pin power connectors. Recommended PSU is 750W.
GIGABYTE RGB Fusion 2.0 is supported on this video card. This allows 16.7M customizable color options and numerous lighting effects controlled and synchronized with other AORUS devices. This video card also supports AORUS Engine and thus overclocking through GIGABYTE’s software. This video card has 3 DisplayPorts and 2 HDMI ports.
What really wraps up this bundle well is a 4-year warranty. This is uncommon, and a nice thing to see. Instead of a standard 3-year warranty GIGABYTE gives you one more year of protection for free. To enjoy this 4-year warranty you must register on the website within 30 days of purchase.