NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3080 Founders Edition Review: Gaming, Thermals, Noise, & Power Benchmarks

This is our review of the NVIDIA RTX 3080 video card, looking at the new Ampere GPU and its Founders cooler vs. the GTX 1080 Ti, RTX 2080 Ti, RTX 2080, 2070, Super cards, RX, and more.
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RTX 3080 FE Tear-Down:

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This review of the NVIDIA RTX 3080 takes into consideration the Founders Edition thermal design and cooling solution, including acoustics (noise), thermals, contact pressure, and coldplate flatness, and also preps the groundwork for reviews versus EVGA, ASUS, Gigabyte, and other partner model RTX 3080 cards, where we’ll compare VRAM (GDDR6X) and VRM (MOSFET) thermals between partners. We started with a focus on auto settings for this review. PCIe 4 vs. PCIe 3 tests were also completed, and we chose the fastest platform for this comparison (but we do have Gen3 vs. Gen4 benchmarks coming shortly). The RTX game results, particularly for fully path-traced games, produced interesting data when looking at scaling vs. the 2080 Ti, but ‘normal’ games are also included.


00:00 – RTX 3080 Review Premise
01:51 – The Cooler Interests & Basic RTX 3080 Specs
02:58 – RTX 3080 VRAM Limitations & 10GB vs. 11-12GB
04:51 – Pressure Testing of RTX 3080 Founders Edition
06:50 – Coldplate Flatness of RTX 3080 FE Cooler
08:12 – RTX 3080 Frequency vs. Temperature
09:12 – Fan RPM Behavior vs. GPU Temperature
09:51 – Noise Levels Over Time for FE Card
10:58 – Fan Speed vs. Noise Level & Harmonics
11:49 – Games – Red Dead Redemption 2 GPU Benchmarks
14:15 – Vulkan vs. Dx12 API Performance on RTX 3080 GPU
15:01 – Rainbow Six Siege GPU Benchmarks (RTX 3080 vs. 2080 Ti, et al)
15:46 – Unstable Overclock Frametime Plot
17:02 – Tomb Raider RTX 3080 vs. 1080 Ti, 5700 XT, Etc
18:13 – Microsoft Flight Simulator GPU Benchmarks
18:46 – F1 2019 Crashed on 3080, But Fixed After Launch
18:59 – Horizon Zero Dawn GPU Benchmarks
19:38 – Three Kingdoms, The Division 2, GTA V Benchmarks
20:07 – RTX Game Benchmarks on Minecraft
21:34 – Control RTX Benchmarks & DLSS On vs. Off
22:19 – Insane Scaling in Quake II RTX
23:01 – Power Consumption of RTX 3080 vs. 2080, Ti, 1080 Ti, et al
25:20 – RTX 3080 Overclock Stepping Chart
26:11 – Conclusion: Cooling Solution, Gaming, & More

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Editorial, Testing, Test Lead: Steve Burke
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  1. hey I wish the charts were much bigger and do you think by this winter of maybe fall 2021 before we get any good discount and I prefer to see mostly stock systems beeing tested and I want to see real world tests I hate the prices are fixed too high which means the rich people buy the 1st round of products and for the 1st year or so and I like to see the price charts and how good of performance of my pci 3 slot

  2. based on the power consumption with an overclocked FE 3080 pulling 366 watts would a 860w PSU be enough for a total system? I plan on getting a zen 3 cpu when they launch as well

  3. I’m not going to lie I do think it is a little bit stupid to put a fan blowing heat towards the CPU and RAM sticks. I wish the XFX thicc 3 ultra was 10gb. Because 7 days to die says it takes a little more then 7.

  4. What size PSU would I need to a i7 10700k and a 3080? I am thinking about buying a 850, I have been told that should be enough but it's always good to get other opinions.

  5. why buy a card when already get good frames wha reason do yall have to get this do yall game on 5k or something cause 4k runs good at 1080ti

    I had said to myself before I got my 1080 that this card would last me long time at 1440p and I was right

  6. Great review. I still see comments about the limited VRAM everywhere. Can you somehow show how much VRAM a game actually uses or artificially limit the VRAM to see if it impacts performance and do a video about that? (Maybe with a 3090)

  7. I have to say I'm kinda miffed there isn't more AMD in the stats. Like, you grab 3 different brands of each nivida back to 1080 but you can't have a couple AMDs besides for one 5700 and the 7? I really like you guys but that disappoints me. I'd like a more expansive comparison.

  8. RTX 3080

    – Still keeping the 20 series price hike as the new norm
    – power PIG
    – HOT mess (it will actually be fun to use as a room heater in Winter)
    – RTX still unsolved (40% penalty)
    – the size! OMG!
    – whitewashing the last generation
    – a total disaster of a choice going with Samsung s option

    – Actually a performance increase over the last gen
    – very interesting option work wise (if you can keep up with the noise and heat)

    So we were delivered the future according to NVDA. Instead of getting more productive and efficient cards, we re still on the same path as before, small increments or we turbo the cards for everything they re worth and end up with portable ovens…
    I ll PASS, TYVM.

  9. What about the thermals on different spots on the pcb, e.g. VRAM? A German Youtuber called Igor's Lab measured 104 °C on VRAM, but nobody except him is mentioning it. Will there be coming an extra video on thermals?

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