Shopping for a new NVIDIA graphics card again and want the best one for the right price? Our RTX 4080 vs RTX 4090 comparison will help you with this situation. We’ll put two of the best and latest graphics cards from NVIDIA against each other and compare their similarities, differences, features, and gaming benchmarks to let you decide which one’s right for you.
- In the gaming benchmarks, the RTX 4090 was the better performer, with an average of 133 FPS in 10 games at 4K compared to 107 FPS of the RTX 4080, which means a performance boost of 24.3%.
- The RTX 4090 is an extremely power-hungry card compared to the RTX 4080 and consumes, on average, 69 more watts than the RTX 4080, making the latter 23.3% more efficient.
- NVIDIA lists the RTX 4090 at $1,599 and the RTX 4080 at $1,199, which means the RTX 4080 is a little more than 33.4% cheaper than the RTX 4090.
- The RTX 4090 has 24GB of memory, 16384 CUDA cores, and a memory BUS width of 384-bit compared to 16GB of memory, 9728 CUDA cores, and a memory BUS width of 256-bit.
|Technical Specs||NVIDIA RTX 4080||NVIDIA RTX 4090|
|Architecture||Ada Lovelace||Ada Lovelace|
|Process Size||4 nm||4 nm|
|Transistors||45,900 million||76,300 million|
|Base Clock||2205 MHz||2235 MHz|
|Boost Clock||2505 MHz||2520 MHz|
|Memory Size||16 GB||24 GB|
|Memory Speed||716.8 GB/s||1,008 GB/s|
|L2 Cache||64 MB||72 MB|
|TDP||320 W||450 W|
|Release Date||Q3 2022||Q3 2022|
|MSRP||From $1199||From $1599|
|Best Variants||Best RTX 4080||Best RTX 4090|
In terms of architecture, both graphics cards are based on NVIDIA’s Ada Lovelace architecture, launched at the end of the 3rd quarter of 2022. However, there’s a slight difference in the GPU configuration, with the RTX 4080 having the AD103 vs RTX 4090 having the AD102 GPU. Does that make a huge difference? In terms of the limits your graphics card can reach, the answer is yes.
To keep it simple, AD102 is the better GPU due to its higher configurations. For example, AD103 has a die size of only 378.6 mm² compared to AD102’s die size of 608 mm². As a result, you have more transistors on AD102 than on AD103. So, the RTX 4080 has 45,900 million transistors, contrasting with the RTX 4090’s 76,300 million transistors.
Other than the differences in configurations, there isn’t much difference between the two cards in terms of the architecture they are based on. Let’s not forget that they were launched at the same time but were meant for two different audiences.
Do you think you don’t need to move to a new architecture yet and would rather buy something more affordable at this point? If yes, you’ll love our RTX 3060 Vs. GTX 1660 Ti [Gaming Benchmarks 2023] comparison.
Clock Speeds And Memory
Here’s another important thing to consider when buying a card because memory type and size, along with clock speeds, have a direct impact on the performance of the graphics card. In this regard, these two cards are playing on two completely different levels.
In terms of the base and boost clock, the two are pretty much the same, with the RTX 4080 having a base clock speed of 2205 MHz compared to the 2235 MHz of the RTX 4090. While there is a slight difference in their base clock speeds, the boost clock speed difference is quite negligible, with 2505 MHz and 2520 MHz being the boosted speeds of the RTX 4080 and the RTX 4090, respectively.
Also Read: Nvidia RTX 4080 Vs RTX 3080 Ti
The real difference between the two cards lies in their memory type, size, and speed. The RTX 4090 has a memory size of 24 GB compared to 16 GB on the RTX 4080. They both have GDDR6X memory, but the RTX 4090 BUS width of 384-bit can be nearly 50% faster than the 256-bit BUS width of the RTX 4080.
Combine the added speed of a wider BUS with increased transfer rates, and you have an extremely powerful RTX 4090 GPU. To be precise, its memory bandwidth is 1008 GB/s compared to the 716.8 GB/s of the RTX 4080.
Not sure how to overclock your GPU and get the most out of it? Our guide on the 12 Best GPU Overlocking Software will be a great help to you for sure.
AI And Ray Tracing
You find many differences between the two in the AI and ray tracing domain other than the fact that the RTX 4090 is the more powerful out of the two. They have 3rd-gen DLSS and 4th-gen tensor cores to give you unparalleled AI-accelerated graphics performance.
Since both cards are from the 4000 NVIDIA series, they both have Optical Flow Acceleration. This means your cards will offer you increased FPS through machine learning and AI enhancement when you are gaming.
The difference, as stated earlier, is their configuration. The RTX 4080 offers 304 dedicated tensor cores, which is already quite a lot, but the RTX 4090 offers you a whopping 512 tensor cores. When it comes to ray tracing performance, they both have 3rd-gen RT cores, but the RTX 4080 has 76, and the RTX 4090 has 128 of those cores.
If you wish to know more about NVIDIA DLSS3, we highly recommend you take some time to read our NVIDIA DLSS3 guide that goes into the details of everything you need to know about this tech.
NVIDIA puts a lot of thought into its graphics card designs and has done the same with the RTX 4080 and the RTX 4090. Both cards have the dual-fan design that their predecessors from the 30-series had. Surprisingly, the RTX 4080 is a bit bulkier than the RTX 4090.
The RTX 4080 is 0.2 inches bigger than the RTX 4090 when you measure it by length. It’s also the wider card at 5.5 inches compared to the 5.4 inches of the RTX 4090. The height of the two cards remains the same.
Their designs are indeed quite similar to the 3080 Ti graphics card from NVIDIA, but the company has paid more attention to cooling, which is evident from the increased size of the cooling fans on the RTX 4080 and the RTX 4090.
Not a fan of NVIDIA graphics cards? How about you read our Radeon RX 7900 XTX vs Radeon RX 6950 XT comparison and see how these two AMD graphics cards fair against each other?
RTX 4080 Vs RTX 4090: 4K Gaming Benchmarks
There is no doubt that both cards are pretty impressive in terms of their specifications. However, as a gamer, you want to know their real-world performance, which can only be shown through gaming benchmarks. So, to help you make up your mind, we tested the RTX 4080 vs the RTX 4090 in 10 games at 4K resolution and collected their FPS, power consumption, and thermal data. Testing Games on YouTube performed these benchmark tests, and here is the setup they have used.
- CPU: Core i9-13900K
- GPU 1: NVIDIA GeForce RTX 4080 16 GB
- GPU 2: NVIDIA GeForce RTX 4090 24 GB
- Motherboard: ASUS ROG STRIX Z790-E Gaming
- Memory: G.Skill Trident Z5 RGB 32 GB DDR5 6000 MHz CL 38
- CPU Cooler: Be Quiet! Dark Rock Pro 4
- SSD: 2 x Samsung 970 EVO M.2 2280 1TB
- Power Supply: Corsair RM850i 850 W
- Operating System: Windows 10 Pro
A Plague Tale Requiem
- The NVIDIA RTX 4090 was faster in this test and gave us 111 FPS on average compared to an average of 75 FPS on the NVIDIA RTX 4080.
- The NVIDIA RTX 4090 offered us a 48% performance boost over the NVIDIA RTX 4080.
- The NVIDIA RTX 4080 is the more efficient in using power at 320 watts compared to a power consumption of 402 watts by the NVIDIA RTX 4090.
- The temperature was at 60 degrees Celsius for both cards, which shows that the RTX 4090 produces less energy despite using more power.
- Cyberpunk 2077 has taken a toll on both cards, with the NVIDIA RTX 4090 producing only 73 FPS and the RTX 4080 only 56 FPS.
- Based on the FPS results from both cards, we can say that the NVIDIA RTX 4090 is a little over 30% better in frame generation than the NVIDIA RTX 4080.
- There is a big gap in power consumption with the NVIDIA RTX 4080 using only 288 watts compared to the NVIDIA RTX 4090’s 363 watts.
- The NVIDIA RTX 4090 proves to be more efficient as it is at only 53 degrees Celsius, while the NVIDIA RTX 4080 is at 58 degrees Celsius.
Forza Horizon 5
- Both cards performed well at 4K in Forza Horizon 5, but the NVIDIA RTX 4090 offered nearly 19% improved performance at 183 FPS compared to 154 FPS.
- The NVIDIA RTX 4090 was impressive as its Low 0.1% was also at 105 FPS compared to 79 FPS on the NVIDIA RTX 4080.
- The power consumption difference was reduced a bit in this test as the NVIDIA RTX 4080 used 291 watts while the NVIDIA RTX 4090 used 33 watts more.
- Despite using 33 watts more from the motherboard, the NVIDIA RTX 4090 is 10 degrees cooler than the NVIDIA RTX 4080 by maintaining a temperature of 51 degrees Celsius.
Similar Comparisons: RTX 4080 Vs RTX 3090
God Of War
- God of War was another great game for the NVIDIA RTX 4090 as it delivered an average of 162 FPS compared to 128 FPS from the NVIDIA RTX 4080.
- As a result of this RTX 4080 vs RTX 4090 test, we got 26.6% better FPS production from the NVIDIA RTX 4090 compared to the NVIDIA RTX 4080.
- The power consumption difference widened again as the NVIDIA RTX 4090 used 364 watts compared to only 298 watts used by the NVIDIA RTX 4080.
- The NVIDIA RTX 4080 ran 4 degrees hotter at 60 degrees Celsius compared to 56 degrees Celsius on the NVIDIA RTX 4090.
- The performance delivered in Hitman 3 was great by both cards, but the RTX 4090 was better with 182 FPS, whereas the RTX 4080 was at 141 FPS.
- By offering us more than 41 frames per second, the NVIDIA RTX 4090 was able to deliver 29% better performance in this game.
- Power consumption was higher yet again on the NVIDIA RTX 4090 chip at 381 watts compared to 312 watts on the NVIDIA RTX 4080.
- The temperature difference of only 2 degrees was negligible, but it was the NVIDIA RTX 4090 that was on the cooler side.
Horizon Zero Dawn
- The gap between frame generation rates was reduced in this game as the RTX 4080 was able to deliver 143 FPS compared to 162 FPS from the NVIDIA RTX 4090.
- The NVIDIA RTX 4090 was only 13% better than the NVIDIA RTX 4080 in this benchmark.
- For some reason, the difference in power consumption was reduced, too, as the RTX 4090 used 347 watts, whereas RTX 4080 used 310 watts.
- The NVIDIA RTX 4090 ran way cooler than the RTX 4080 by keeping the temperatures limited to 52 degrees Celsius compared to 61 degrees Celsius on the RTX 4080.
Microsoft Flight Simulator
- Microsoft Flight Simulator is a graphics-heavy game, so none of the cards could cross the 100 FPS mark, but the RTX 4090 was closer by delivering 92 FPS.
- With the RTX 4080 giving us only 67 FPS in this game, it allowed its rival to give us a little more than 37% better FPS performance.
- The RTX 4090 consumed a lot of power in this test and chewed up 420 watts, while the RTX 4080 only consumed 301 watts.
- The temperature on both chips was 59 degrees Celsius.
Red Dead Redemption 2
- The average FPS reading on the RTX 4090 and the NVIDIA RTX 4080 was 122 FPS and 102 FPS, respectively.
- There was a performance difference of nearly 20%, with the RTX 4090 delivering the better frame production rate.
- The RTX 4090 consumed 353 watts–that’s 56 watts more than what the RTX 4080 consumed.
- The NVIDIA RTX 4090 produced much less heat and was 52 degrees Celsius compared to the NVIDIA RTX 4080, which was 58 degrees Celsius.
- The performance wasn’t great from either graphics card, with the NVIDIA RTX 4090 producing only 79 frames every second and the RTX 4080 producing only 63 FPS.
- The performance boost on the RTX 4090 was just a little over 25%.
- Spiderman took a toll on the RTX 4090 as it continued to draw 340 watts from the motherboard, whereas the RTX 4080 drew only 259 watts.
- The RTX 4090 was 55 degrees Celsius, whereas the RTX 4080 was 57 degrees Celsius, so the difference wasn’t noteworthy.
Also Read: RTX 4080 Vs RTX 3080
- Both cards gave their best in this game, and none was disappointing as the RTX 4090 was at 159 FPS, and the RTX 4080 was at 137 FPS.
- The increase in average FPS performance was only 16%, with the RTX 4090 being the better of the two.
- The RTX 4080 continued to use less power and kept its consumption at 239 watts compared to a consumption of 308 watts by the RTX 4090.
- Unsurprisingly, the RTX 4090 was cooler at 51 degrees Celsius, and the RTX 4080 was hotter at 58 degrees Celsius.
Overall Gaming Performance
If the verdict of the RTX 4080 vs RTX 4090 battle has to be given based solely based on higher FPS; there is no doubt that the NVIDIA RTX 4090 is the winner out of the two. It was consistently the better of the two and continued to offer a higher average FPS, Low 1%, and Low 0.1% FPS.
The difference between the two shrank the most in Spiderman, where the RTX 4090 offered only 16 more frames per second than the RTX 4080. The biggest performance boost for the RTX 4090 was in Hitman 3, wherein it was able to produce 41 more frames every second than the RTX 4080.
On average, we got 107 FPS from the RTX 4080 and 133 FPS from the RTX 4090. This means, on average, we got 26 more frames every second on the RTX 4090, which is a 24.3% boost for those using the RTX 4090 against those using the RTX 4080.
Power Usage And Thermal Statistics
Let’s begin this section of our RTX 4080 vs RTX 4090 comparison by stating that the RTX 4090 isn’t supposed to be light on your power resources. You can see that from the TDP rating that has been given to this card by the manufacturer. It has a TDP of 450W, and the recommended power supply should be 850 W.
Contrary to that, you have the RTX 4080 with a TDP of 320W, and the power supply recommended for this graphics card should be 700W. So, you can see that the proposed TDP from the manufacturer suggests you should expect the RTX 4090 to draw 130W more than the RTX 4080 at all times.
So, the RTX 4080 is nearly 41% more efficient than the RTX 4090 in terms of power consumption, which means that you will spend more money on your energy bills by installing the RTX 4090. Now, when you look at the results obtained from our gaming benchmarks, things didn’t change much.
Forza Horizon 5 was the game where this difference in power consumption reduced the most, with the RTX 4090 consuming 33 watts more power. The difference was as huge as 119 Watts while playing Microsoft Flight Simulator when the RTX 4090 was consuming 420 Watts compared to the RTX 4080 using 301 Watts.
The average power consumption in 10 games at 4K was 292 Watts for the RTX 4080 and 360 Watts for the RTX 4090, which meant the RTX 4080 was a little more than 23% more efficient in power consumption than the RTX 4090. Also, you might be interested in reading our RTX 4080 vs RX 6950 XT guide.
In our RTX 4080 vs RTX 4090 gaming benchmarks, it became evident over and over that the RTX 4090 was the more efficient card in terms of producing heat. It’s quite ironic but true that this card uses a lot more power than the RTX 4080 but continuously comes out as the cooler one in most of our 4K gaming tests.
On two occasions, the cards were at the same temperature, i.e., while playing A Plague Tale Requiem and Microsoft Flight Simulator. Keep in mind Microsoft Flight Simulator is also the game where the difference in their power consumption was the widest, with the RTX 4090 using 119 watts more than the RTX 4080.
The biggest temperature difference between the two GPUs occurred while playing Forza Horizon 5 when the RTX 4080 was at 61 degrees Celsius, whereas the RTX 4090 was at 51 degrees Celsius. This meant the RTX 4090 was running 10 degrees cooler, which is almost 20% cooler.
When we take the average temperatures of both cards in all 10 games, the RTX 4080 hits 59 degrees Celsius, whereas the RTX 4090 hits 55 degrees Celsius. With an average difference of 4 degrees Celsius, the RTX 4090 came out as the 7.3% more efficient card.
Pricing And Availability
So, what’s the price that you should prepare to pay for each card? Since the RTX 4080 is the one with lower specifications, it is also the one priced lower. However, the one thing you can’t ignore is that none of these cards is meant to be a truly budget-friendly option.
When you compare them with other options, they don’t belong to even the mid-tier range of cards. NVIDIA lists the RTX 4080 at $1,199, and it’s just the starting price. You will find other options that can be expensive. Next up on the list is the Gigabyte GeForce RTX 4080 EAGLE OC version, which will cost you a minimum of $1,239.
In almost all cases with NVIDIA cards, the ASUS ROG option is the most expensive one, which is true for this card. ASUS ROG Strix version with boosted clock speed is listed on NVIDIA’s website at $1,549.
On the other hand, the RTX 4090 starts at $1,599 on NVIDIA’s website, and the ASUS version with an Axial-tech cooling system is listed at $1,799. Comparing the prices of the two cards based on their founder’s editions, the RTX 4090 is $400 more expensive than the RTX 4080.
In other words, if you buy the original version of the card, you will be paying nearly 33% more to buy the RTX 4090 graphics card.
RTX 4080 Vs RTX 4090: Which One’s For You?
Before you finalize your purchasing decision, you must consider the value you will get from the card you buy. You can’t just rely on the price of an item to make your final decision.
It always has to be the value you get for the money you spend. Yes, you will indeed spend 33% more when you go for the RTX 4090 compared to the RTX 4080, but are you going to get the type of performance that you have been looking for?
You have to factor in other aspects, such as the added costs you will pay on your energy bills. With the RTX 4090, you will pay more on your electricity bill because, in our tests, we found that the RTX 4090 uses 23% more power from the motherboard than the RTX 4080. It produces less heat, but even the RTX 4080 remains in the “safe” temperature zone for the most part, so you won’t have to spend any money on extra cooling.
When you take into account the price of both cards, the RTX 4090 is 33% more expensive than its sibling, the RTX 4080. However, in our test, we found it to be 24.3% better performing in FPS results. Therefore, there is a significant performance to sacrifice if you make your decision based solely on the price of the two cards.
Since it’s your money, it is for you to decide which card you want to go for. In our verdict, the RTX 4080 is a great balance between price and performance, and the RTX 4090 is an unmatched performance beast.
Also, check out our RTX 4080 Vs. RX 6900 XT comparison if your choices aren’t limited to NVIDIA and you want to explore other options.
Frequently Asked Questions
They are based on the Ada Lovelace architecture, but the RTX 4090 uses the AD102 GPU, whereas the RTX 4080 uses the AD103 GPU, both of which have different limitations in terms of die size, transistor count, etc.
With the RTX 4080 and the RTX 4090, you are getting DLSS 3, i.e., the 3rd generation of the DLSS feature.
No, the RTX 4080 has a 256-bit BUS width, whereas the RTX 4090 has a 384-bit BUS width.
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