The GeForce RTX 4090 represents the apex of graphics card technology, with unfathomable performance that surpasses that of any other GPU currently available. It marks a pivotal shift in the architecture of modern Nvidia graphics cards, with Nvidia continuing to push the boundaries of what current technology is capable of. For lower budget users, the RTX 4080 may be better choice.
The initial debut of the GeForce RTX 4090 was not met with the best of reviews, with consumers complaining about its ludicrous pricing, awkward power delivery system, and ginormous size which even puts a 3090 ti to shame when compared directly against it. Here are our picks for Best RTX 4090 Graphics Cards, alongside a comparison table to differentiate them.
Last update on 2022-12-04
While the use of the 12-pin connector on the founders edition GeForce RTX 3090 was previously met with an adverse reaction by consumers, Nvidia seems to have implemented an even more controversial 16-pin 12VHPWR power delivery system with the GeForce RTX 4090. With that, you will have to use separate four 8-pin power connectors for older power supplies that are not ATX 3.0.
Although Nvidia seems to have missed the mark when it comes to power delivery, they have not dialed things down on the performance side of things. With such tremendous uplift in performance over a single generational leap, the 4090 tops the chart in both traditionally rasterized games and ray-traced titles.
At the time of writing this article, the GeForce RTX 4090 sits at the top of Nvidia’s 40-series lineup; however, we expect a GeForce RTX 4090 Ti to eventually dethrone the 4090, ultimately taking the crown as the most powerful GPU in the world.
With a huge list of aftermarket cards currently floating around in the market, picking a suitable card that meets your needs can get challenging. This is why we, here at Tech4Gamers, have come up with a list of the Best RTX 4090 Graphic Cards, to help you with your next graphics card purchase.
Nvidia GeForce RTX 4090: What’s new?
All of the previously mentioned details, only scratch the surface of what the GeForce RTX 4090 has to offer. To give you an insight into the sheer absurdity of its performance, let’s take a closer look at the GeForce RTX 4090’s architecture and specifications before moving on to our picks for the Nvidia GeForce RTX 4090 Graphics Card.
The Nvidia GeForce RTX 4090 is based on the latest AD102 GPU, which uses Nvidia’s Ada Lovelace architecture, Built on a 4nm process node, the Nvidia GeForce RTX 4090 currently holds the title of the fastest graphics card in the world. Featuring 24 GB of GDDR6X memory, and an increased boost clock speed of 2520 MHz, it is clear that Nvidia has not held back in any aspect with this card.
Of course, you can expect the boost clock speed to slightly increase with aftermarket cards. On the other hand, core counts have also received a significant bump. The GeForce RTX 4090 consists of 16384 GPU Shader units along with a total of 512 tensor cores. Contributing to its Ray tracing performance are the 128 RT cores it comes with, which help the card achieve the best possible ray tracing performance currently possible.
Its improvements over the last generation don’t end there, with the GeForce RTX 4090 coming in with 178 ROPs and an L2 cache of 72 MB, which is a big step up from the 3090 Ti’s L2 cache of 6 MB. The 24GB of GDDR6X memory has maintained its presence, with the same memory clock speed of 1313 MHz.
With the GeForce RTX 4090, we also see the debut of Nvidia’s brand-new upscaling technology, Taking the already well-received functionality of DLSS 2.0, Nvidia seems to have scaled things up a notch with DLSS 3.0. With the new “Frame Generation” method, DLSS 3.0 allows you to nearly double the number of frames in some cases. We recommend checking out our detailed article on DLSS 3.0 if you would like to know more about it.
Having said all that, the performance uplift has also translated into a significant bump in its overall power consumption as well as an astronomical increase in price. With a TDP of 450W, the GeForce RTX 4090 is one of the most power-hungry graphic cards to have ever launched. Its high power consumption means you will have to pair it with a relatively beefy power supply.
Nvidia recommends a minimum power supply of 850W for the GeForce RTX 4090; however, we have seen aftermarket manufacturers raise that up all the way to 1000W to ensure a stable experience. Moreover, while it may not be advertised as an 8K powerhouse, the GeForce RTX 4090 is fully capable of running games at native 8K 60 fps, which is quite an outstanding feat to achieve.
With such an incredible leap in performance, the GeForce RTX 4090 can only be referred to as a generational defining card, currently standing in a league of its own with no other GPU coming close to its performance. Not only does it blast through traditional rasterized titles but it also performs extremely well with ray tracing.
Overall, it comes with an undeniably huge increase in performance compared to the last generation; however, with an MSRP of 1599 US dollars, the 4090 is simply not a feasible option for many. If you are interested in comparing the card with Nvidia’s previous best, the GeForce RTX 3090 Ti then our comparison between the two graphic cards is worth a read.
Best RTX 4090 Graphics Cards
These are the Best RTX 4090 Graphics Cards:
- ASUS ROG Strix GeForce RTX 4090 OC Edition
- MSI GeForce RTX 4090 Suprim Liquid 24G
- Gigabyte AORUS GeForce RTX 4090 Master
- ASUS TUF Gaming GeForce RTX 4090 OC Edition
- MSI GeForce RTX 4090 Gaming X Trio
ASUS ROG Strix GeForce RTX 4090 OC Edition
Best Overall GeForce RTX 4090
Specifications: Dimensions: 357.6 x 149.3 x 70.1mm | Boost Clock: 2640 MHz | Power Connectors: 1 x 16-pin | RGB: Yes | Display Outputs: 2 x HDMI 2.1a, 3 x DisplayPort 1,4a Recommended PSU: 1000W
- Uncompromised cooling
- Great VRM configuration
- Excellent selection of rear I/O ports
ASUS is a renowned brand that has continued to provide gamers and enthusiasts with capable products over the years, ranging from graphic cards to motherboards. With an undeniably huge influence within the industry, ASUS stands out as one of the most prominent figures in the market when it comes to manufacturing premium graphic cards.
With The release of the GeForce RTX 4090, ASUS has unveiled their latest lineup for the relevant graphic card. In recent years, we have witnessed ASUS loading the Strix lineup of graphic cards with high-end features. With the GeForce RTX 4090 being a flagship GPU, ASUS has made the Strix 4090 the most powerful air-cooled GPU in their lineup.
Much like the rest of the products in the ROG Strix lineup, the GeForce ROG Strix GeForce RTX 4090 also features a cyberpunk look, with hints of blue and grey scattered across the shroud. While some people might not be huge fans of this design, it can be equally as fascinating for others.
The already great performance has not stopped ASUS from pushing this GPU even further. The ASUS Strix GeForce RTX 4090 comes with a boost clock speed of 2640 MHz, the highest we have seen yet on any of the air-cooled variants from ASUS.
Cooling the GeForce RTX 4090 is no easy task, especially for an air-cooled card with boost frequencies this high. This is why to back up its outstanding performance, ASUS has reinforced the Strix GeForce RTX 4090 with the right amount of cooling. That has resulted in a huge size increase as well, with the ROG Strix GeForce RTX 4090 occupying 3.5 slots.
An equally significant aspect of a graphic card is the VRM configuration, and ASUS has not held back in that regard either. The ASUS ROG Strix GeForce RTX 4090 OC Comes with a 24-Phase VRM, assigning 20 phases to the GPU voltage. It is worth noting, that each of the phases is rated at 70A.
With the GeForce RTX 4090’s ridiculous power draw, you will need a hefty power supply for the GPU. ASUS has gone as far as to recommend a 1000W power supply, for their Strix variant of the card. Of course, that is a little higher than Nvidia’s recommended; however, the high number is to accommodate for the higher boost frequencies it comes with.
The ASUS ROG Strix 4090 ranks among one of the fastest RTX 4090 cards available. Coming im with a power limit of 500W, it offers great performance right out of the box without any sort of overclocking coming into the mix.
What We Liked
Being an enthusiast-grade GPU, the GeForce RTX 4090 is bound to deliver phenomenal performance; however, ASUS takes it up a notch with slightly higher clock speeds than the founder’s edition. In a similar fashion, we also see a robust cooling system with the ASUS ROG Strix variant of the 4090 which also provides arguably;y better thermal performance than the founders edition,
What We Disliked
One thing that remains prevalent among the 4090 graphic cards is their enormous size. Occupying up to four slots, the ASUS GeForce RTX 4090 suffers from the same issue as the rest of the air-cooled variants of the GeForce RTX 4090. Another issue the card suffers from is its jacked-up price.
With an MSRP of 2000 US dollars, its price exceeds even that of other aftermarket variants. While it is somewhat justified thanks to its solid out-of-the-box performance, Its high price makes it a bit of a hard sell, especially when considering that other variants are available at a lower price only compromising slightly on the performance
The ROG Strix GeForce RTX 3090 OC from ASUS is simply a well-manufactured product, both on a design level, for its sleek and distinguishable aesthetic, and on a performance level, for its high boost clock speeds and top-notch VRM design. With its positives ultimately outweighing the negatives; we have deemed it as the Best Overall RTX 4090 Graphics Card.
MSI GeForce RTX 4090 Suprim Liquid 24G
Best Liquid Cooled RTX 4090
Specifications: Dimensions: 280 x 140 x 43 mm | Boost Clock: 2640 MHz | Power Connectors: 1 x 16-pin | RGB: Yes | Display Outputs: 1 x HDMI 2.1a, 3 x DisplayPort 1.4a Recommended PSU: 1000W
- Excellent thermal performance
- Relatively slim 2-slot design
- Aesthetically appealing
- 26-phase VRM design for the GPU
- Slightly Underwhelming performance
- Priced higher than the reference card
Since the GeForce RTX 4090 requires an absurd amount of cooling, it makes more sense to opt for a liquid-cooled GPU, especially if you are working with less space. With air-cooled GPUs now occupying up to four slots, a liquid-cooled variant like the GeForce RTX 4090 Surpim Liquid from MSI makes for a much more viable option.
Being a water-cooled card means you will have to install a separate 240mm radiator on your case for the card to function properly. However, its comparatively slimmer 2-slot design completely makes up for that, leaving you ample room to utilize the rest of the space in your build.
With such an incredible performance uplift over a single generation also comes challenges in regard to cooling your GPU. With the GeForce RTX 4090 Suprim Liquid, MSI has done a fairly great job to tackle this issue, incorporating their low-profile pump which ensures an optimal flow at all times. The pump is also equipped with a Micro-copper base for efficient heat transfer.
Speaking of cooling, the MSI GeForce RTX 4090 Suprim Liquid comes with MSI’s TOXR FAN 5.0 fan. MSI claims that this 95mm fan provides a 10 percent increase in its overall airflow compared to their previous generation fan. Moreover, MSI has included two of their Silent Gale P12 fans with the 240mm aluminum radiator, the fans, unfortunately, do not feature any RGB whatsoever.
Unlike some other air-cooled variants, MSI has decided to tone down on the RGB side of things, only equipping the GeForce RTX 4090 Surpim Liquid with a single RGB strip which can be found at the edge of the 95mm GPU fan. In all fairness, the minimalistic design coupled with the sleek RGB makes the card stand out as one of the better-looking variants currently available.
Adding on, the GeForce RTX 4090 Suprim Liquid has a power consumption of 450W, which is increased to 480W in gaming mode. Furthermore, MSI recommends a 1000W PSU for the card, although a minimum of 850W would suffice for the card, it is better to opt for a 1000W one to leave some headroom for sudden fluctuations in the power draw..
Moving on to the performance side of things, you get a clock speed of 2625 MHz, which can be increased to 2640 MHz in “Extreme Performance” Mode. MSI has not skimped out on the VRM design of the card either, assigning a grand total of 26-phases to the GPU voltage, and four to the memory.
What We Liked
If the 3.5-slot design of the air-cooled GeForce RTX 4090 cards was a dealbreaker for you, then MSI has got you covered with a Liquid Cooler 4090 which brings forth all of the features you would want from a GeForce RTX 4090 with a slimed down 2-slot design. Not to mention, its sleek and elegant design.
With the GeForce RTX 4090 Surpim Liquid 24G, MSI’s emphasis on the cooling solution is obvious here. We see MSI’s TRI FROZR 3S cooling solution come into play here, which offers better thermal performance than most air-cooled cards. In addition to that, It also comes with a monstrous 26-phase VRM design for the GPU, ensuring a stable experience at all times.
The 26-phase VRM setup and exceptional thermal capabilities of the MSI GeForce RTX 4090 Surpim Liquid allow you to squeeze a bit more performance out of the GPU through overclocking. Of course, there will be no drastic increases in performance; however, it is nice to see that it is capable of handling any kind of overclocking.
What We Disliked
The liquid Cooled MSI GeForce RTX 4090 Surpim also comes at a slightly higher price than the founders edition; however, that is typical for any aftermarket GeForce RTX 4090. One thing that we found to be a bit disappointing is the insignificant performance gains that it provides over the founders edition.
With a higher MSRP than the reference edition and better thermal performance, we did expect to see slightly higher performance out of this card; however, it should not be a huge issue since the GeForce RTX 4090 is an already excellent performing card, topping the charts in almost every scenario.
Completely decked out with premium features such as the 26-phase VRM design and DUAL-bios switch, the MSI GeForce RTX 4090 Surpim Liquid excels in every aspect. Its elegant black and grey aesthetic in combination with its impressive cooling performance makes it the Best Liquid Cooled RTX 4090 Graphics Card.
Gigabyte AORUS GeForce RTX 4090 Master
Best RTX 4090 With Air Cooling
Specifications: Dimensions: 358.5 x 162.8 x 75.1 mm | Boost Clock: 2550 MHz | Power Connectors: 1 x 16-pin| RGB: Yes | Display Outputs: 3 x Display Port 1.4, 1 x HDMI 2.1 Recommended PSU: 1000W
- LCD Screen on the side
- Offers great thermal performance
- Only a single HDMI Port
Responsible for making groundbreaking innovations, Gigabyte is labeled as one of the most reputable brands to have ever graced the surface of the industry. Over recent years, they have continued to provide gamers and enthusiasts with well-manufactured products, managing to surpass our expectations with each new release. We also expect to see a similar trend with their recently unveiled Gigabyte AORUS GeForce RTX 4090 Master.
The Gigabyte AORUS GeForce RTX 4090 Master’s design is surprisingly unique, featuring a black and grey color scheme with flashy RGB on the front. While that might not be everyone’s cup of tea, it is certainly an upgrade over the design featured in the GeForce RTX 3090 variant of the AORUS card. It is worth noting, the RGB is fully compatible with Gigabyte’s RGB fusion as well.
Although the AORUS GeForce RTX 4090 Master is “factory-overclocked”, it provides unnoticeable changes when it comes to its actual boost frequency. It offers a measly 30 MHz increase in its overall boost clock speed when compared to the founders edition. While that is nothing to scoff at, it is a bit underwhelming especially given Gigabyte’s previous record of pushing cards to their limits.
To make up for that, Gigabyte has designed the WindForce Cooling system to provide best-in-class thermal performance. Gigabyte includes a total of three of their 110mm Bionic fans that allow for excellent heat dissipation, making overclocking very possible through traditional means.
Bundled with the AORUS GeForce RTX 4090 Master is an additional Anti-Sag bracket that can be a lifesaver when it comes to these gigantic 4-slot beasts. Its weight of 2020g is bound to lead to sagging at some point. It is an absolute behemoth of a graphics card, occupying a total of four slots.
We also do not see a change in its power draw, with a listed consumption of 450W. Gigabyte recommends a 1000W PSU for the AORUS GeForce RTX 4090 Master. In a similar fashion to the rest of the aftermarket GeForce RTX 4090 variants, Gigabyte has also included a physical Dual-BIOS switch on the card, allowing you to manually switch between the two modes.
What We Liked
As far as air-cooled cards are concerned, the Gigabyte AORUS GeForce RTX 4090 immediately sets itself apart as one of the top performers when it comes to thermal performance Its Windforce cooling solution gives you enough headroom to push the card further, and the excellent VRM design also plays a huge part in increasing its overclocking capabilities
One of its main highlights includes the addition of an LCD Edge view, which we have previously seen on older high-end AORUS cards. The LCD screen allows you to add custom GIFs, Images, and text, increasing the overall personalization and customizability of your build which is a huge plus for some people.
What We Disliked
There is not much to dislike about the Gigabyte AORUS GeForce RTX 4090, aside from the selection of display outputs. With HDMI being the only way for users to transfer 8K signals, the inclusion of a single HDMI port is simply not going to cut it for people working with multiple high-resolution displays. Not only that but it is also a huge downgrade from the previous generation AORUS card which came with 3 HDMI ports.
All things considered, the ASUS GeForce RTX 4090 sets the bar high with its remarkable design and great thermal performance. It brings to the table an astounding number of features, including an LCD screen as well as a decent design. All of that in combination with its excellent cooking system makes it the Best Air Cooled RTX 4090.
ASUS TUF Gaming GeForce RTX 4090 OC Edition
Best Value RTX 4090
Specifications: Dimensions: 348.2 x 150 x 72.6 mm | Boost Clock: 2595 MHz | Power Connectors: 1 x 16-pin | RGB: Yes | Display Outputs: 2x HDMI 2.1a, 3 x DisplayPort 1.4a Recommended PSU: 850W
- Well-built structure
- Excellent cooling capabilities
- Massive 4-slot Design
ASUS’ focus and emphasis on offering excellent products that provide the best in class performance has helped them achieve resounding success across the globe. They seem to have stayed resilient in their efforts of providing the most value out of their products, this time surprising us yet again with their ASUS TUF Gaming GeForce RTX 4090 OC Edition.
The ASUS TUF Gaming GeForce RTX 4090 OC Edition retains most of the design elements of their previous flagship, with a similar grey color pattern. Of course, not everything from the 3090 variant of the card has been carried over to this one. We see a huge increase in the overall size, going from a 2.7-slot design to a 3.65-slot one over a single generation.
The increased size is to accommodate the new and improved cooling system which comes with Axial Tech fans and a Metal Exoskeleton. Further adding to its design is the aluminum fan shroud which gives the card a sturdy look. Speaking of the fans, The Axial tech fans have also received an upgrade, with a 23 percent increase in their airflow.
While the look of the card has remained the same for the most part, we see several improvements being made in regard to the build quality and performance. The upgrades include the addition of an aluminum shroud, an increase in fan size. as well as an improved VRM design.
Its features don’t end there, you also get an increased boost clock speed of 2595 MHz with the card. Furthermore, ASUS has decided not to hold back on the VRM design either, with the AORUS GeForce RTX 4090 Master coming with an impressive 18-phase VRM for the GPU. On the other hand, ASUS has assigned four phases to its memory.
The ASUS TUF Gaming GeForce RTX 4090 is a monstrous triple fan card. Coming in with a weight of 2313 grams, it stands out as one of the heaviest GeForce RTX 4090 cards available. Of course, the metal shroud and the triple fan design play a huge role in adding a lot of heft to the card. Luckily, ASUS includes a separate metallic card holder, to prevent the GPU from sagging.
What We Liked
Compared to other cards which come with a plastic shroud, ASUS has decided to take things up a notch by including an aluminum shroud with the ASUS GeForce RTC 4090 TUF Gaming. The aluminum shroud improves its overall build quality, makes the card appear sturdier while also adding a premium feel to it.
By the looks of it, the ASUS TUF Gaming GeForce RTX 4090 does not fall behind on any of its features, being equipped with a great cooling solution, a powerful VRM design and a factory overclock. Increasing its boost clock speeds through overclocking should not be a huge problem either.
With the GeForce RTX 4090 being a flagship graphics card, ASUS has not compromised on any of its features. It is completely jam-packed with premium features that would otherwise be found on higher-end variants ASUS has also implemented a new design with the aim of improving the overall airflow and heat dissipation of the card.
What We Disliked
There is not much to dislike about the GeForce RTX 4090 TUF Gaming OC from ASUS, given its great cooling solution and solid build quality. However, its 4-slot design leaves almost no space in an average-sized build.
Given its huge length, it is important to check your PC case compatibility before actually purchasing the card. Another problem with the is the heft it comes with. With a weight of 2313 grams, using the included cardholder almost becomes a necessity, which can detract a bit from the overall look of your build.
Given the RTX 4090’s incredibly high price, it almost feels unfair to call any of these cards a value option. However, when compared to other aftermarket variants, the AORUS GeForce RTX 4090 from Gigabyte comes the closest to the actual MSRP of the founders edition without compromising too much on any of its features which makes it the Best Value For Money RTX 4090 Graphics Card.
MSI GeForce RTX 4090 Gaming X Trio
Best Looking RTX 4090 Graphics Card
Specifications: Dimensions: 337 x 140 x 77 mm | Boost Clock: 2610 MHz | Power Connectors: 1 x 16-pin | RGB: Yes | Display Outputs: 1 x HDMI 2.1a, 3 x DisplayPort 1.4a Recommended PSU: 850W
- Fantastic design
- TRI FROZR 3 Cooling Solution
- Solid Build Quality
- Included anti-sag bracket
- Massive 4-slot Design
With this being their second offering their list, it is reasonable to presume that the company itself does not require much of an introduction. We have already seen MSI being featured on the list with their liquid-cooled variant of the GeForce RTX 4090. MSI takes up another spot on the list, this time with their newly released air-cooled variant, the GeForce RTX 4090 Gaming X Trio.
It is important to mention its design before anything else. Although the MSI GeForce RTX 4090 Gaming X Trio does not bring anything revolutionary with its design, it does set itself apart as a visually appealing card. One look at the card and it becomes immediately apparent that fans of RGB will particularly be pleased with the design.
In an effort to cool down the monstrosity that is the GeForce RTX 4090, MSI has included their TRI FROZR 3 cooling solution which provides improved heat dissipation, along with a better design. The improved TRI Frozr 3 Cooling should provide adequate cooling performance, allowing your GPU to maintain reasonable temperatures at all times.
You also get MSI’s “Air Antegrade Fin” on the back of the card, which is a passageway for air to flow through, reducing the overall temperatures as a result. In addition to that, the cooling solution is equipped with three of MSI’s TORX 5.0 fans, which come with increased airflow along with some design improvements.
Much like the rest of the aftermarket variants, we see a bump in the overall clock speeds of the card when compared to the founders edition. However, with a 90 MHz increase in its boost clock speeds, you won’t be noticing a major difference in the performance. Moving on, It comes with a maximum power limit of 480W, which is why MSI recommends a 1000W power supply for the card.
Taking a closer look at the card, a dual bios switch is present, which allows you to switch between the Gaming or Silent mode. As the name suggests, the gaming mode cranks the clock speeds to the maximum, ensuring a smoother gaming experience; whereas, the silent mode focuses on reducing the noise levels of the card by sacrificing a bit of its performance.
Unlike other cards which come with a vertical card holder, MSI has included an anti-sag bracket with their GeForce RTX 4090 Gaming X Trio. Not only does it prevent your card from sagging, as you would expect, but it also does not take away much from the overall look of your card. It is also worth noting, that the bracket is extremely easy to install.
Compared to the high-end Surpim variant of the GeForce RTX 4090 from MSI, we see slight compromises with the VRM setup, coming with an 18+4 power phase design. Of course, that is not a huge downgrade and it should prove to be more than sufficient for the GeForce RTX 4090.
What We Liked
All in all, the MSI GeForce RTX 4090 Gaming X Trio has a lot going for it, from its impeccable design to the decent VRM setup, it has everything that you would expect from a great aftermarket card. It is reasonable to say that it checks all the boxes of a high-end card, leaving you with little to nothing to complain about.
It brings a host of note-worth features such as an efficient cooling solution along with a slight increase in the boost clock speeds. The MSI GeForce RTX 4090 Gaming X Trio is also arguably one of the best-looking cards to have come out in the previous months, featuring a vibrant design with three of MSI’s Tri FROZR 5.0 fans.
What We Disliked
One of its main disadvantages comes down to the display ports present on the rear I/O. A single HDMI port can be a limiting factor in more ways than you would think, this can even be a deal breaker for some people. With other variants including at least two HDMi ports, we expected to see more from the MSI GeForce RTX 4090 Gaming X Trio. It is also worth noting that the included anti-sag bracket does take up a large amount of space, further increasing the size of the card.
Equipped with a breathtaking design, the MSI GeForce RTX 4090 Gaming X Trio is a sight to behold, immediately standing out as the Best Looking RTX 4090 card Graphics Card on this list. Its phenomenal design is a breath of fresh air in a market that is otherwise filled with rather mediocre designs.
Additionally, they have equipped it with a plethora of features such as the Tri FROZR cooling solution and the 18+4 phase VRM configuration, which allow you to utilize your GPU to its maximum potential. In conclusion, the MSI GeForce RTX 4090 Gaming X Trio with all the features you would expect from a well-built air-cooled card.
RTX 4090 vs 3080 Ti
|Technical Specs||RTX 4090||RTX 3080 Ti|
|Pipelines / CUDA cores||16384 CUDA cores||10240 CUDA cores|
|Thermal design power (TDP)||450 Watt||350 Watt|
|Manufacturing process technology||4 nm||8 nm|
|Boost clock speed||2520 MHz||1665 MHz|
|Core clock speed||2235 MHz||1365 MHz|
|Memory Capacity||24 GB GDDR6X||12 GB GDDR6X|
|Memory speed||21 Gbps||19 Gbps|
|Bandwidth||1018 GB/s||912.4 GB/s|
Given the price difference between the GeForce RTX 4090 and the RTX 3080 Ti, it almost feels unfair to put these two directly against each other. While the GeForce RTX 3080 Ti is a powerhouse of a GPU, it still fails to keep up with the GeForce RTX 4090 when it comes to raw performance.
We see a shift in the architecture between the two graphics cards, with the GeForce RTX 4090 now being powered by Nvidia’s brand-new AD102 GPU. With the new Ada Lovelace architecture, the GeForce RTX 4090 brings considerable performance improvements over the GeForce RTX 3080 Ti.
The increase that the GeForce RTX 4090 provides is put to display with its higher core count of 16384 Cuda cores along with a higher boost clock speed of 2520 MHz. For comparison, the GeForce RTX 3080 Ti comes with a boost clock speed of 1667 MHz, and a total of 10240 Cuda cores.
The GeForce RTX 4090 also doubles the VRAM capacity of the GeForce RTX 3080 Ti, coming equipped with 24 GB of GDDR6x memory, rated at a clock speed of 1313 MHz. In addition to that, RTX 3080 Ti’s memory bandwidth of 912.4 GB/s proves to be lower than the 4090’s bandwidth of 1008 GB/s.
The GeForce RTX 3080 Ti seems to draw much less power than the GeForce RTX 3090. Rated with a TDP of 350W, its power consumption is 100W lower than the 4090. We also see a substantial improvement in ray tracing performance thanks to its third-generation ray-accelerated cores.
Speaking of ray tracing, the RT cores have not only been upgraded but have also received a significant bump in their core counts. The GeForce RTX 4090 features a total of 128 RT cores, allowing you to crank the ray tracing settings all the way up without sacrificing too much performance.
Compared to that, with only 80 2nd generation RT cores, the GeForce RTX 3080 Ti falls behind the GeForce RTX 4090 in terms of ray tracing performance. Similarly, the 4090 also comes with a Tensor Core count of 512, a decent improvement over the 3080 Ti.
A huge benefit of the new 4000 series GPUs in general also comes down to DLSS 3.0, which effectively doubles the number of frames with the help of AI upscaling and Nvidia’s latest “frame generation” technology. Unfortunately, the 3000 series of GPU will not be able to take advantage of DLSS 3.0, meaning the GeForce RTX 3080 Ti will be stuck with DLSS 2.0.
To be fair, the price gap between the two graphics cards is also huge. Moreover, with the crypto crash, we have seen GeForce RTX 3080 Ti’s price drop considerably. On the other hand, the GeForce RTX 4090 was just unveiled and comes in at an MSRP of $1699. 4090’s high price makes the GeForce RTX 3080 Ti a much more viable option for budget gamers.
In conclusion, If you’re looking for value alone, then the GeForce RTX 3080 Ti is a solid pick, packing a lot of performance while still being available at a reasonable price. However, if you wish to obtain the best performance currently possible, then the GeForce RTX 4090 is definitely the way to go.
Here is a full comparison between RTX 3080 Ti vs RTX 4090.
RTX 4090 vs 6900
|Specifications||NVIDIA RTX 4090||AMD RX 6900 XT|
|Launch Date||September 2022||December 2020|
|Architecture||Ada Lovelace||Navi 21|
|Game Clock||2230 MHz||2015 MHz|
|Boost Clock||2520 MHz||2250 MHz|
|Transistors||76.3 billion||26.8 billion|
|Memory Bandwidth||1018 GB/s||512 GB/s|
|Texture Fill Rate||1290 GT/s||720 GT/s|
|Length||12 inches (304 mm)||10.5 inches (267 mm)|
|Width||5.3 inches (137 mm)||4.2 inches (107 mm)|
|Recommended Board Power||850W||850W|
To give you a better understanding of where the GeForce RTX 4090 currently stands, we have compared it against AMD’s last-gen RX 6900 XT. Of course, it is not particularly a fair comparison given the generational gap between the cards however it should still serve as an indicator of how far Nvidia has been able to push the GeForce RTX 4090 with their new Ada Lovelace architecture.
AMD’s RDNA 2.0 graphic cards have always excelled at providing high clock speeds and the RX 6900 is no exception to this, with its boost clock speed of 2250 MHz. However, Nvidia seems to have caught up this generation, with the GeForce RTX 4090 coming with a clock speed of 2520 MHz.
Moving on to the memory specifications, the RX 6900 XT features 16 GB of GDDR6 memory. The GeForce RTX 4090 adds an additional 8GB to that, coming with 24 GB of GDDR6x memory, which also has a much higher bandwidth than the RX 6900 XT.
Coming with a total of 5120 Shading units and an L2 Cache of 4MB, the RX 6900 XT is much slower than the GeForce RTX 4090, which offers a higher L2 cache of 72MB along with 16384 shadings units. Ray tracing has never been AMD’s strong suit and that remains true for the RX 6900.
GeForce RTX 4090 doubles the ray-tracing performance of the RX 6900 XT in some cases, which speaks volumes about the RX 6900’s rather lackluster performance in ray-traced titles. Traditional rasterization, on the other hand, is something the 6900 XT is much more capable of handling. Although it comes nowhere close to the 4090, it still puts up a decent fight, ensuring a stable and smooth overall experience even when working with higher resolutions
To say the GeForce RTX 4090 surpasses the 6900 XT in performance would definitely be an understatement; however, that has also led to an increase in power consumption. With a 1.5x increase in TDP over the RX 6900 XT, the GeForce RTX 4090 is one of the most power-hungry graphics cards you can get.
Performance aside, we have seen a significant reduction in the RX 6900 XT’s price over the years. Its low price allows it to offer unmatched value, which simply is not the case with the 4090 due to its MSRP of $1699. Its higher price means it will be completely out of the question for anyone on a strict budget.
DLSS is another big advantage the RTX 4000 lineup has over the AMD cards. DLSS has continued to prove itself as the superior upscaling technology, and while we expect AMD to catch up soon with FSR 3.0, as of now, Nvidia’s DLSS 3.0 takes the crown as a far better upscaling method, essentially doubling your frames in a few titles.
To sum up, the RX 6900 XT is still a great option; however, it comes nowhere near the enthusiast-grade performance of the GeForce RTX 4090. To AMD’s credit, the RX 6900 has been around for over two years now, and it has held up quite well in that duration.
Read the full comparison article on RTX 4090 vs RX 6900.
How We Selected
Here are a few factors we considered when coming up with our picks for the Best GeForce RTX 4090 Graphics Card.
Although most people might be oblivious to its importance, the VRM or Voltage Regulator Module serves as a core component for any electrical component. It ensures a constant and stable flow of current through your components, allowing them to maintain stable voltages at all times. A stable and efficient VRM design dramatically increases the life span of your card, protecting it from sudden surges in the voltages.
The power limit of your card determines how much power it is going to consume. You can often find manufacturers that set the maximum power limit higher than the reference edition allowing the card to draw more power. Of course, they back the card up with a suitable cooling solution when doing so. A higher power limit increases the overall overclocking potential, allowing you to squeeze a bit more performance out of your graphics card.
Temperatures and Cooling
The Cooling solution used in a graphics card plays a huge role in determining its actual performance. A GPU with limited thermal capabilities will perform significantly worse than an adequately cooled counterpart. That is due to thermal throttling, which limits your GPU’s performance when it exceeds a certain temperature threshold.
To avoid that, you will have to opt for an aftermarket card that comes with a suitable cooling solution. Additionally, if you would like to try your hand at overclocking, then a beefier VRM setup and better thermal performance will be required.
With the GeForce RTX 4090’s astronomical price tag, it is clear that it is designed specifically for people that want the best performance possible. With the incredible performance gains also comes an increase in its overall size, with most air-cooled variants of the GeForce RTX 4090 coming in with a four-slot design.
Naturally, the four-slot design will be reduced if you opt for a liquid-cooled variant; however, you will have to make room to install the radiator this liquid cooler comes with. No matter what type of Graphic card you end up going with, it is obvious that you will need a sizable PC case in order to accommodate this behemoth of a GPU.
In a graphic card’s case, performance has always been the most important factor, taking precedence for the majority of people. The performance is determined by multiple factors, ranging from boost clock speeds to overclocking capabilities. A high-end variant or not, you are bound to be impressed by the GeForce RTX 4090s’ out-of-the-box performance; however, you can get slightly increased performance with a higher-end card that comes with increased clock speeds and a better VRM configuration.
Overclocking can also be used to increase a card’s performance and while you won’t notice a significant change in the GeForce RTX 4090’s performance when overclocking, it is still a factor that you should look out for. Speaking of which, a card’s overclocking capabilities can also vary with each variant which is why keeping an eye out for the power limit, VRM setup, and cooling solution is important when going for an aftermarket card.
As subjective as aesthetics can be, it is important to go for a card that matches the theme of your build, without standing out too much. Having said that, it all comes down to personal preference in the end. Of course, it would not be advisable to blow the entirety of your budget on the aesthetics alone; however, if you are opting for the GeForce RTX 4090, it is likely that you have the financial headroom to get the best-looking card available.
Frequently Asked Questions
The GeForce RTX 4090 comes with a power consumption of 450W, a minimum of 850W power supply is recommended for the card..
The GeForce RTX 4090 is more than capable of running triple-A titles at 4K 60fps. Not only that, but it is also enough for providing a high refresh rate 4K experience, which was almost unheard of before the launch of the GeForce RTX 4090
A non-ATX 3.0 power supply should suffice for the GeForce RTX 4090 as long as it meets the recommended requirements; however, you will have to use a separate adapter, which uses four 8-pin PCIe connectors. Of course, that is only for older power supplies, an ATX 3.0 power supply should work right off the bat with a single PCIe power c
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