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Computing

Nvidia GeForce RTX 4080 16GB vs RTX 4080 12GB

Nvidia has surprised us all by announcing two versions of the GeForce RTX 4080 instead of an RTX 4080 and an RTX 4070. Following the RTX 4090, the two 4080s will likely be some of the more popular GPUs in the brand-new RTX 40 “Ada Lovelace” lineup.

While the RTX 4070 didn’t make an appearance yet, the two versions of the RTX 4080 give us plenty to get hyped for. Let’s see how they compare to one another.

Specs

Nvidia

While the two GPUs are both called RTX 4080, they differ quite a lot in terms of their specifications. Many leaks suspected that Nvidia would be launching the RTX 4090, RTX 4080, and the RTX 4070 initially. Now, it seems that the RTX 4080 12GB may have inherited some of the specs that were initially leaked as RTX 4070.

The RTX 4080 16GB obviously sports more memory, but interestingly, it’s the RTX 4080 12GB that has slightly higher clock speeds. However, the extra memory and CUDA cores on the RTX 4080 16GB will both have an impact on performance.

Nvidia GeForce RTX 4080 16GB Nvidia GeForce RTX 4080 12GB
CUDA cores 9,728 7,680
Base clock 2,210MHz 2,310MHz
Maximum clock 2,510MHz 2,610MHz
Memory size 16GB GDDR6X 12GB GDDR6X
Memory bus 256-bit 192-bit
TDP 320 watts 285 watts

Expected performance

Comparison of the RTX 4080 16GB and 12GB versions.
Nvidia

Nvidia hasn’t said much about the expected performance of the RTX 4080, so it’s hard to predict how powerful the two GPUs are going to be. We can guess based on their specs, but the real knowledge will come from benchmarks. Fortunately, we’re likely to start seeing them begin to leak out soon, and once the cards are fully out, we should be able to test them ourselves.

The CUDA core volume of the RTX 4080 12GB puts it between the RTX 3070 Ti and the RTX 3080. However, it sports more memory than the RTX 3070 Ti, and also utilizes Nvidia’s latest tech such as DLSS 3 and Shader Execution Reordering (SER). Suffice it to say that we will be seeing an improvement in terms of performance from both cards, but it’s too early to gauge just how they compare to each other.

Nvidia has teased that the RTX 4080 will be two to four times faster than the RTX 3080 Ti, but these numbers may change. It did give us one thing, though — the benchmark linked above that implies the RTX 4080 16GB outperforms the RTX 4080 12GB in each of the three titles, but it’s not a massive difference. However, they both dwarf the RTX 3080 Ti.

Pricing and availability

Nvidia's Ada Lovelace chip.
Nvidia

We don’t have an exact release date for the two RTX 4080 GPUs just yet, but we do know that they will be launching in November this year, so a little later than the flagship RTX 4090.

Once they arrive, the GPUs will be priced at $899 for the RTX 4080 12GB and $1,119 for the RTX 4080 16GB. Custom models from Nvidia’s board partners, such as Gigabyte, Asus, Zotac, MSI, and others, will also be available soon enough, and those might be priced higher depending on their specifications.

It’s a close call

A comparison between the graphics quality without DLSS 3 and with it.
Nvidia

Choosing between the RTX 4080 16GB and the RTX 4080 12GB is going to be a pretty close call once these GPUs are available for sale.

On the one hand, the RTX 4080 12GB is $300 cheaper, and that’s nothing to sneeze at. On the other hand, the 16GB version will, of course, offer better performance, but it’s hard to say whether that difference will be worth $300.

Based on specifications alone, the RTX 4080 16GB will be the better choice, no contest — but if you’re looking for a mix of affordable and powerful, the 12GB option might be the better pick. The RTX 3080 and RTX 3080 Ti will also retain their good value if you’ll be focusing on the price rather than pushing for the latest technologies.

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Game

NVIDIA looks set to reveal its next-gen GeForce RTX GPUs on September 20th

NVIDIA’s GPU Technology Conference goes down this month and the company has revealed when CEO Jensen Huang’s keynote will take place. You’ll be able to watch it at 11AM ET on September 20th. The keynote will kick off with a GeForce Beyond special broadcast, which will also stream on and .

The company says the event will include “the latest breakthroughs in gaming, creating and graphics technology.” NVIDIA is expected to reveal its RTX 40-series graphics cards during the broadcast — an image the company shared to promote the event includes the GeForce RTX Logo. NVIDIA previously said it would release its this year. Those will supplant graphics cards with the current Ampere architecture.

It remains to be seen just how well the RTX 40-series cards will perform. In the meantime, the 30-series GPUs after the cryptocurrency market cratered.

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Game

GeForce Now boosts Chrome streaming to 120fps and 1440p

NVIDIA is adding a new perk to GeForce Now’s most expensive tier. Starting today, you can stream games at 1440p and 120 frames per second through a browser. At the moment, the new performance setting is available exclusively through GeForce Now’s $20 per month RTX 3080 membership and only Google Chrome on PC. The more affordable $10 per month Priority tier will continue to max out at 1080p and 60fps for the time being.

Naturally, you’ll need a compatible display to get the most out of any game you decide to stream at 1440p and 120fps, making the utility of higher-performance browser streaming somewhat limited. If you were already using Geforce Now to stream games at 1440p and 120fps, there’s a good chance you were doing it at home through the GeForce Now app. Other perks of the 3080 tier include priority access to NVIDIA’s best servers, support for ray-tracing and the ability to play games for up to eight hours during a single session. The 3080 tier also allows you to play games at up to 4K at 60fps and 120fps on compatible Android phones.

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Computing

GeForce Now Works at Native Resolution on the MacBook Pro

You can finally use GeForce Now on a MacBook Pro at its native aspect ratio. When Nvidia announced the RTX 3080 tier for its GeForce Now cloud gaming service, the company said streams would run at the native resolution of 1600p. Now, that’s available as part of the latest GeForce Now update.

The M1 Max and M1 Pro MacBook Pros feature beefy GPUs, but they’re not tuned for gaming. The list of the best Mac games isn’t too large, either. That’s where GeForce Now comes in, allowing you to play any supported PC game on your MacBook Pro, MacBook Air, iMac, or iOS device without worrying about performance or compatibility.

In the case of GeForce Now, MacBooks actually have a slight edge over PCs. The RTX 3080 tier tops out at 2,560 x 1,440 at 120 frames per second (fps) on PC. The MacBook Pro uses a 16:10 aspect ratio for a resolution of 2,560 x 1,600, which the RTX 3080 tier can now fully take advantage of.

The RTX 3080 tier is the closest we’ve seen cloud gaming get to native gaming. It’s not perfect, as the “magic of PC gaming” is still washed in a layer of video compression, but it’s much closer than any other cloud gaming service has gotten. It’s the most expensive GeForce Now subscription Nvidia offers, offering 1440p on PC, 1600p on Macs, 120 fps streaming, and eight-hour session lengths.

There should be a big asterisk next to the frame rate. Although the RTX 3080 tier is capable of 120 fps streaming in most titles, Nvidia caps the frame rate on a number of popular games. Cyberpunk 2077, for example, is capped at 45 fps. Valheim, a game that’s not demanding whatsoever, is also capped at 50 fps.

The RTX 3080 tier runs $99.99 for six months, and Nvidia is currently offering it alongside a copy of Crysis Remastered. Below that is the Priority tier, which is $49.99 for six months. It tops out at 1080p at 60 fps with six-hour session lengths, and it also comes with a copy of Crysis Remastered. Nvidia offers a free tier, though free users are limited to hour-long sessions without RTX features.

In addition to native MacBook Pro resolution, the new GeForce Now update includes integration with Ubisoft Connect. Similar to the Epic Games Store, you can now save your sign-in info for your Ubisoft Connect account in the app. That will skip the log in process whenever you boot up a Ubisoft game.

As usual, Nvidia also announced several new games joining GeForce Now as part of its weekly GFN Thursday. Here are the new games for this week:

  • A-Train: All Aboard! Tourism (Steam, December 7)
  • White Shadows (Steam, December 7)
  • Monopoly Madness (Ubisoft Connect, December 9)
  • Anno 1404 History Edition (free on Ubisoft Connect, December 6 to 14)
  • Prison Architect (free on Epic Games Store, December 9 to 16)
  • Super Magbot (Steam)
  • Untitled Goose Game (Epic Games Store)

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Computing

Nvidia’s GeForce RTX 3090 Ti GPU Set for January Launch

Nvidia is reportedly set to add three new variations to its GeForce RTX 30 series of GPUs, with the flagship RTX 3090 Ti apparently due for a release next month.

According to an embargoed document uncovered by VideoCardz, the highly anticipated RTX 3090 Ti GPU will be released on January 27, 2022. Also expected to be released on that same date is the GeForce RTX 3050 8GB graphics card. With CES 2022 around the corner, expect Nvidia to formally introduce these video cards at the event.

Elsewhere, Nvidia is said to be planning to announce the upgraded RTX 3070 Ti 16GB model next week on December 17, while a launch to consumers is scheduled for January 11. As for its specifications, VideoCardz notes how the GPU will contain the same CUDA core count as the 8GB model, in addition to the same clock speeds.

The card will also come with 16GB of GDDR6X memory, according to Wccftech, which means the standard GDDR6 modules found on the current GeForce RTX 3070 graphics card are being upgraded.

Nvidia’s GeForce RTX 3050 8GB, meanwhile, is rumored to deliver 3072 CUDA cores in 24 SM units through the GA106-150 GPU, joined by 8GB of GDDR6 memory. Ultimately, such specs would make the card an attractive option in the mainstream segment of the market.

As for the powerful RTX 3090 Ti, which is obviously geared toward enthusiasts, previous rumors have given us an insight into what to expect from the card. It’s expected to feature 21Gbps of GDDR6X memory based on 2GB GDDR6X memory modules. Notably, this will allow the GPU to sport 1TBps of bandwidth.

Next-generation standards such as PCIe Gen 5.0 will be supported by a new 16-pin connector, while a 450 W TDP will offer increased power consumption; the RTX 3090 Ti is set to be Nvidia’s first video card for the consumer market to utilize the full GA102 GPU via its 10,752 CUDA cores.

Nvidia’s keynote at CES 2022 takes place on January 4, aptly providing it with an opportunity to unveil the aforementioned Ampere graphics cards. Getting your hands on these upcoming GPUs, however, is another discussion entirely due to the current worldwide shortage. Nvidia recently stated that long-term agreements with manufacturers meant supplies could improve during the second half of 2022.

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Game

LG WebOS Smart TVs will soon have an NVIDIA GeForce NOW app

LG is clearly dead-serious about expanding its smart TV kingdom, not just in terms of hardware but also software. In addition to adding new apps and services to its smart TVs, like Apple TV+ and support for AirPlay 2, LG has also started licensing its WebOS platform to other smart TV manufacturers. Most of those new features have revolved around “passive” entertainment, but this newest feature treads into the realm of interactive content, with the upcoming arrival of NVIDIA’s GeForce NOW game streaming to select LG smart TVs.

There are two or three major game streaming platforms these days, but NVIDIA was actually playing around with that possibility long before Google revealed its own take with Stadia. GeForce NOW did go out of beta a bit later, but it also has one of the largest numbers of supported devices to run. In addition to mobile, computers, and consoles, GeForce NOW is also coming to smart TVs, at least those running LG’s WebOS.

Select 2021 models of LG’s 4K OLED, QNED Mini LED, and NanoCell TVs in 80 markets will soon be able to test out a beta version of the GeForce NOW app that’s coming this week. Of course, availability still depends on whether the service is actually available in particular countries, but US owners need not worry about that at all. They also don’t need to worry about their TV’s hardware capabilities because the whole point of game streaming is to offload the heavy processing to remote computers.

Those remote computers happen to be using NVIDIA’s beefy RTX graphics card to stream smooth 1080p games running at 60 fps, complete with ray tracing effects. That said, this particular feature requires a paid subscription.

LG naturally promotes features of its TVs, like deep blacks on its OLED sets and fast 1 ms response times to combat input lag. It will be curious to see how the image quality will end up since they will have to be upscaled on 2K and 4K TVs. LG also isn’t saying if this app will be exclusive to LG smart TVs or if it will eventually find its way to third-party WebOS sets.

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Computing

Nvidia Intentionally Caps Frame Rates in GeForce Now Games

Nvidia’s cloud-streaming gaming service GeForce Now has recently added a new plan called RTX 3080. At twice the price of the tier that used to be the best (dubbed Priority), the new plan is said to deliver the performance of a high-end gaming computer.

While Nvidia is busy promoting the RTX 3080 plan, existing GeForce Now Priority members noticed that their games are not being rendered at 60 frames per second (fps) as promised. After this discovery, Nvidia affirmed that while no games in the RTX 3080 plan are limited, the company admits to intentionally capping the fps in certain games for players who use the Priority tier. We tested several games to check out how they perform when using Nvidia GeForce Now.

The Priority tier costs $50 per month and promises gaming performance equal to using a premium gaming rig, priority access to gaming servers, up to six hours of gaming at a time, and most importantly, up to 1080p gaming at 60 fps. However, it appears that not all of the 1,100 supported games are able to deliver this kind of performance, although this is in no way indicated by Nvidia on the membership page.

The situation was made public when a Reddit user contacted Nvidia’s customer service, noting that Guardians of the Galaxy caps out at 50 frames per second. This cannot be changed in the game menu. This prompted Nvidia’s confirmation that certain titles are blocked from going above a certain fps threshold.

Testing shows varying results

We’ve done some of our own testing to verify whether Guardians of the Galaxy, as well as some other AAA titles, are capped on GeForce Now. Guardians of the Galaxy is a DLSS game and has a render resolution of 50% regardless of whether the setting is on or off. Tweaking the setting doesn’t seem to affect the image quality or performance.

Our in-game benchmark produced an average of 80 frames per second, which is much higher than the 50 fps experienced by the Reddit user mentioned above. Regardless, Nvidia confirmed that the game is capped at 50 fps.

Someone playing on GeForce Now.

“Some games on GFN are capped at certain fps such as Cyberpunk (at 45 fps) and others. For Guardians of Galaxy, it’s capped at 50 fps, so it’s not a bug,” said Nvidia’s representative in an email.

Nvidia has published a full list of GeForce Now games that have capped frame rates for Priority users. According to Nvidia, the premium systems used for Priority members were unable to sustain a steady 60 frames per second in these titles.

The company chose to limit the frame rates by adding a new setting as opposed to improving the performance of these rigs for Priority users. This setting is called Optimal Playable Settings (OSP) and can be overridden in most, but not all of the games provided by Nvidia GeForce Now. Nvidia claims that limiting fps in some games will ensure a consistent, high-quality experience to all Priority members, but Nvidia also assures that the games are still being streamed at 60 fps.

We tested several other games from Nvidia’s list to verify the fps capabilities provided to Priority members. Assassin’s Creed Odyssey is supposed to be capped at 45 fps, but the cap is turned off and the game produces an average of 59 fps. It’s interesting that Assassin’s Creed Valhalla is not on the list alongside Odyssey, as both the games run on the same engine.

Cyberpunk 2077, meanwhile, is supposedly capped at 45 fps, though I captured 60 fps on the video stream with a local frame rate tool. It appears that GeForce Now does indeed still stream at 60 frames per second, even if the game itself doesn’t render that many frames.

Valheim and Path of Exile are also found on Nvidia’s list, and that’s another surprising example of Nvidia’s strange fps capping pattern. Both of these titles are not very demanding when it comes to system requirements, so it’s curious why Nvidia chose to cap them at 50 fps each — the same as the famously resource-heavy Cyberpunk 2077.

GeForce Now on a MacBook Air.

DLSS turned on

We have also discovered that Nvidia DLSS is on in most supported games. As a Founder, you generally cannot change the settings, but DLSS is an exception. Turning it off results in a massive improvement in image quality.

It’s difficult to say whether all of these frame rate limitations affect every single user. As proven by our testing, some games achieve higher fps than what Nvidia intended. In addition, it’s likely that members of the $100-per-month ‘RTX 3080’ tier don’t suffer from these restrictions, although Nvidia hasn’t disclosed if any games are fps capped in that tier.

Despite the discrepancies that Nvidia failed to disclose, GeForce Now remains a solid alternative in times of the ongoing graphics card shortage. However, it would certainly be preferable if Nvidia let future members know about possible fps caps ahead of time.

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Game

NVIDIA GeForce NOW can now stream Steam games to Xbox consoles

There are quite a few game streaming services now available, and they all compete on two main fronts. They try to outdo each other in the number of games they can stream and the number of devices they can stream to. NVIDIA’s GeForce NOW had the advantage of being in beta even before the likes of Google Stadia got started and has been able to expand to more devices than any of its rivals have so far. Its latest trick is to support Microsoft Edge, which, coincidentally, opens the doors to its unofficial arrival on the Xbox.

Being able to play games anywhere has always been a dream for gamers, but almost all solutions available today come with their own compromises. Direct mobile gaming naturally excludes many PC and console titles, while game streaming services tend to favor one gaming platform over another. While GeForce NOW is squarely tied to PC games, its availability on almost any computing device makes up for that.

NVIDIA’s cloud-based gaming service has been available on browsers, including Apple’s Safari, and it has recently added Microsoft Edge to that list. More than just catering to Windows users who do prefer that browser, it also means that GeForce NOW also indirectly adds Xbox consoles to its supported list of devices.

The Verge’s Tom Warren shows how it was relatively trivial to get GeForce NOW running on Microsoft’s console, which practically means getting access to Steam PC games on an Xbox. If that idea didn’t already blow your mind, the tech journalist notes that you can even use a keyboard and a mouse to play those games because Edge on the Xbox supports those input methods too.

Of course, there are ways to run PC games from the Xbox, but those often require you to have a PC on the same network to stream from. This expansion to GeForce NOW removes the need for console gamers to worry about PC specs just to accomplish that, though they will have to keep in mind their Internet speed in exchange. The feature is still in beta, though, and requires the latest version of Microsoft Edge for Xbox.

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Xbox consoles can now access NVIDIA GeForce Now via Microsoft Edge

Although Xbox owners are waiting for Microsoft to switch on its own cloud gaming service on consoles, they have other ways to stream games. An update in September brought the Chromium-based Microsoft Edge browser to Xbox One and Series X/S consoles, allowing players to access Google Stadia. Starting today, they can fire up PC games via NVIDIA’s GeForce Now as well.

GeForce Now is now available in beta on Edge, as The Verge notes, creating a pathway for Xbox users to play hundreds of games they might otherwise miss out on. GeForce Now is free for one-hour sessions though the resolution is limited to 1080p. NVIDIA just unveiled a new, more expensive plan that promises “desktop-class latency” and gameplay streaming in 1440p at up to 120 fps on PC and Mac and in 4K HDR at 60 fps on NVIDIA Shield TV.

Microsoft said it will bring Xbox Game Pass Ultimate’s cloud gaming feature to consoles this holiday season. Even so, thanks to GeForce Now, Xbox One and Xbox Series X/S players now have a gateway to some major PC exclusives, such as League of Legends and Dota 2, without the need for a gaming rig.

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NVIDIA’s new ‘GeForce Now RTX 3080’ streams games at 1440p and 120 fps

NVIDIA has unveiled its next-generation cloud gaming platform called GeForce Now RTX 3080 with “desktop-class latency” and 1440p gaming at up to 120 fps on PC or Mac. The service is powered by a new gaming supercomputer called the GeForce Now SuperPod and costs double the price of the current Priority tier.

The SuperPod is “the most powerful gaming supercomputer ever built,” according to NVIDIA, delivering 39,200 TFLOPS, 11,477, 760 CUDA Cores and 8,960 CPU Cores. NVIDIA said it will provide an experience equivalent to 35 TFLOPs, or triple the Xbox Series X, roughly equal to a PC with an 8-core CPU, 28GB of DDR4-3200 RAM and a PCI-GEN4 SSD. 

NVIDIA launches GeForce Now RTX 3080-class gaming at up to 1440p 120fps

NVIDIA

As such, you’ll see 1440p gaming at up to 120fps on a Mac or PC, and even 4K HDR on a shield, though NVIDIA didn’t mention the refresh rate for the latter. It’ll also support 120 fps on mobile, “supporting next-gen 120Hz displays,” the company said. By comparison, the GeForce Now Priority tier is limited to 1080p at 60 fps, with adaptive VSync available in the latest update.

It’s also promising a “click-to-pixel” latency down to 56 milliseconds, thanks to tricks like adaptive sync that reduces buffering, supposedly beating other services and even local, dedicated PCs. However, that’s based on a 15 millisecond round trip delay (RTD) to the GeForce Now data center, something that obviously depends on your internet provider and where you’re located. 

NVIDIA’s claims aside, it’s clearly a speed upgrade over the current GeForce Priority tier, whether you’re on a mobile device or PC. There’s a price to pay for that speed, though. The GeForce Now premium tier started at $50 per year and recently doubled to $100, which is already a pretty big ask. But the RTX 3080 tier is $100 for six months (around double the price) “in limited quantities,” with Founders and priority early access starting today. If it lives up to the claims, it’s cheaper than buying a new PC, in any case. 

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