About a month ago, NVIDIA did a quiet launch of a new variant of the RTX 30 series, the RTX 3080 12GB GPU. It is thought that it would resolve some of the complaints about only having 10GB of VRAM available to its top-of-the-line mainstream GPU when compared to the 16GB that AMD makes available on its current competitors.
Not only did NVIDIA bump the amount of memory on the card, but it also added a few more CUDA Cores into the mix and bumped up the memory bandwidth, placing it squarely in between the RTX 3080 10GB GPU and RTX 3080 Ti GPU, which means it should differentiate itself by a few inches on the performance charts from its 10GB sibling.
Today we have EVGA’s top-end offering to serve as our launch review for this GPU in the form of the EVGA GeForce RTX 3080 12GB FTW3 ULTRA GAMING.
GeForce RTX 3080 12GB GPU
|GeForce RTX 3080 Ti||GeForce RTX 3080 12GB||GeForce RTX 3080 10GB|
|Process/Die/Arch.||8nm GA102-225 Ampere||8nm GA102-220-A1 Ampere||8nm GA102-200 Ampere|
|VRAM||12GB GDDR6X 19GHz||12GB GDDR6X 19GHz||10GB GDDR6X 19GHz|
|Bus and Bandwidth||384-bit 912GB/s||384-bit 912GB/s||320-bit 760GB/s|
The GeForce 3080 12GB GPU is based on the GA102 die produced on Samsung’s 8nm process. It sports 12GB of GDDR6X at 19GHz on a 384-bit bus. It hosts 8960 CUDA Cores which is 256 more than its 10GB variant. Additionally, the total board power has been bumped to 350W. Clocks listed by NVIDIA indicate a 1260MHz base clock and a 1710MHz boost clock as its stock configuration.
EVGA GeForce RTX 3080 12GB FTW3 ULTRA GAMING (12G-P5-4877-KL)
On our test bench, today is the EVGA GeForce RTX 3080 12GB FTW3 ULTRA GAMING (12G-P5-4877-KL) video card. Among the six RTX 3080 cards that EVGA offers, the FTW3 ULTRA GAMING sports the fastest factory overclock that EVGA currently offers on the RTX 3080 12GB GPU. It is equipped with EVGA’s iCX3 cooling solution which includes three fans.
Like all other GeForce RTX 30 Series GPUs, this card is impossible to find in the retail environment but has an MSRP of $1299.99 direct from EVGA at the time of publication. To get the card from EVGA, jump into their notification queue and await your turn (at least, once the queue reopens for new registrations). We’ve seen the card pop up from time to time at NewEgg and BestBuy but is still as hard to get as any other RTX 30 Series card. This represents a nearly double the price of the 10GB flavor of the RTX 3080, yet there’s no MSRP that we can compare it to (nor a Founders Edition).
In order to see where this GPU stands, we will compare it to the EVGA RTX 3080 10GB FTW3 ULTRA GAMING, the EVGA RTX 3080 Ti FTW3 ULTRA GAMING, and the ASUS TUF 6800 XT OC Edition.
The EVGA GeForce RTX 3080 12GB FTW3 ULTRA GAMING comes in a regulation size video card box that identifies it as an RTX 3080 12GB FTW ULTRA model from EVGA. Once we cracked open the box, we found a black-clad GPU with silver-ish trim sporting three fans and a solid metal backplate. As you can see, the EVGA GeForce RTX 3080 12GB FTW3 ULTRA GAMING is indistinguishable from the EVGA GeForce RTX 3080 Ti FTW3 ULTRA GAMING aside from the top lettering indicating the GPU type (not seen above).
EVGA has given the GeForce RTX 3080 12GB FTW3 ULTRA GAMING a factory overclock of 90MHz on the boost clock, bringing it from the stock 1710MHz up to 1800MHz. Keep in mind that the boost clock is a target based upon power, workload, and temperature and that value will typically be exceeded via the card’s boosting algorithm NVIDIA GPU Boost. It also sports 8GB of 19GHz GDDR6X memory that is equal in speed to the reference specifications. EVGA offers a 350W TGP on the card.
From a size perspective, it’s a large size card that’s no different in size than the other high end 30 Series FTW3 cards from EVGA. Specifically, it is 11.8 inches long, 5.38 inches tall and 2.75 slots wide. For additional comparison, the GeForce RTX 3080 10GB Founders edition’s length is 11.2 inches long, 4.4 inches tall and 2 slots wide, so the EVGA video card is six-tenths of an inch longer, 1 inch taller, and three-quarters of a slot wider.
EVGA iCX3 Cooling
EVGA is utilizing its iCX3 cooling setup that consists of 3 HDB 2.0 noise motor fans with fan blades that have raised “E”s on them to reduce noise. The fans feature an asynchronous fan mode and will switch off when temperatures are under 55 degrees Celsius. The PCB features cutouts (along with the back plate having cutouts) to improve airflow and reduce exhaust recovery. EVGA claims a 5.1% improvement over the iCX2 cooling system while being 9.7% quieter.
Pictures and Information
The front of the card features three HDB 2.0 and silver trim along the top that lights up with RGB goodness. It’s a full two and three-quarters PCI-e slots wide and sports three Display Port 1.4a connections and one HDMI 2.0 connection.
The EVGA GeForce RTX 3080 12GB FTW3 ULTRA GAMING is equipped with a backplate to help further the distribution of heat.
The video card requires three 8-pin PCI-Express power connectors. EVGA recommends a 750W Power Supply, so this is a beefy power requirement for this video card.