RTX 4070 Super vs RTX 3080 Ti – Is the 30-series worth it?

How does the new Super 40-series compare to the established gaming flagship, the 3080 Ti?

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Sometimes, there’s not always a cut-and-dry answer when considering a GPU upgrade; and that’s where we find ourselves with the RTX 4070 Super vs RTX 3080 Ti. That’s because the new mid-range offering stacks up to the previous flagship in a couple of ways, but still lags behind in others. We’ve gone hands-on with our dedicated RTX 4070 Super review, and if you’re after even more about the newer GPU, we have articles on the best RTX 4070 Super graphics card and where to buy the RTX 4070 Super.

For now, let’s see how it compares to Nvidia’s flagship gaming graphics card, the RTX 3080 Ti.

Quick answer

Unsurprisingly, the decision comes down to how much budget you have to spend. The 4070 Super draws less power and has the benefit of DLSS frame generation, but if you can afford it, the RTX 3080 Ti does have the specs and raw power that earned it the title of Nvidia’s flagship gaming GPU in the first place.

RTX 4070 Super vs RTX 3080 Ti specs comparison

The RTX 4070 Super and RTX 3080 Ti are two powerful cards that compete against each other. Examining their technical specifications and components is essential to determine which is a worthwhile investment for fans. Firstly, The RTX 4070 Super takes advantage of the 5nm process size. With 35,800 million transistors, this GPU boasts a significant leap in computational power compared to its predecessor. On the other hand, the RTX 3080 Ti relies on the Ampere architecture with an 8nm process size and slightly larger 28,300 million transistors.

Technical specsRTX 4070 SuperRTX 3080 Ti
GPU ArchitectureAda LovelaceAmpere
Process Size5 nm8 nm
Transistors35,800 million28,300 million
Base Clock Speeds1980 MHz1365 MHz
Boost Clock Speeds2475 MHz1665 MHz
Memory Clock1313 MHz21 Gbps effective1188 MHz19 Gbps effective
Memory Size12 GB12 GB
Memory Bus192 bit384 bit
Bandwidth504.2 GB/s912.4 GB/s
Cuda Cores716810240
SM Count5680
Tensor Cores224320
RT Cores5680
L1 Cache128 KB (per SM)128 KB (per SM)
L2 Cache48 MB6 MB
TDP220 W350 W
Specs table for the RTX 4070 Super and RTX 3080 Ti

Although both the RTX 4070 Super and RTX 3080 Ti have 12GB of VRAM, there are notable differences in their memory architectures. The 4070 Super has a memory bandwidth of 504.2 GB/s and uses a 192-bit memory bus with a clock speed of 1313 MHz. In contrast, the RTX 3080 Ti has an astounding bandwidth of 912.4 GB/s, a wider 384-bit bus, and a faster memory clock at 1188 MHz. These differences may affect how large textures, realistic graphics, and high-resolution assets are handled in-game.

Core counts, including shading units, SM count, Tensor Cores, and RT Cores, provide insights into the computational prowess of these GPUs. The RTX 4070 Super, with 7168 shading units, 56 SMs, 224 Tensor Cores, and 56 RT Cores comes up short of the RTX 3080 Ti. These numbers suggest that the 3080 Ti has a substantial advantage in parallel processing capabilities. Furthermore, the RTX 4070 Super is notably more power-efficient than the RTX 3080 Ti. This could influence system compatibility, cooling requirements, and electricity costs over time.

4070 Super vs 3080 Ti performance comparison

Moving beyond specifications and hardware, the range of performance differences between these GPUs is also telling. The RTX 4070 Super’s higher clock speeds, efficient architecture, and ample cache size contribute to excellent real-time rendering and smooth gameplay. However, the RTX 3080 Ti’s superior core counts and wider memory bus enable it to handle resource-intensive tasks more easily, such as 3D rendering and ray tracing.

Our in-house benchmarking, courtesy of WePC’s Sebastian Kozlowski, the 4070 Super held its ground in not only 1440p, but 4K too. When playing demanding titles such as Assassin’s Creed Mirage and Avatar: Frontiers of Pandora, the RTX 4070 Super reached 119fps and 80fps at 1440p respectively, and average framerates in 4K were also more than playable, landing at 74fps and 60fps.

On the other hand, the RTX 3080 Ti exhibits an advantage in gaming scenarios, particularly in titles that leverage the increased parallel processing capabilities. High-resolution textures, complex lighting effects, and ray-traced reflections showcase the prowess of the RTX 3080 Ti and its overall better performance. However, borrowing some benchmarks from our sister site’s WePC RTX 3080 Ti review, you can see that the performance difference between the two cards isn’t as drastic as their price difference would let on. The RTX 3080 Ti reached an 89fps / 1440p average and 48fps 4K average when playing Cyberpunk 2077 with ray tracing turned on. Shadow of the Tomb Raider was pretty similar, getting averages of 106fps at 1440p and 59 at 4K.

While it’s hard to make a full comparison without judging the games based on the same titles and parameters, you can get an overall sense that there are not too many performance disparities on the cards when they’re playing demanding titles.

RTX 4070 Super vs RTX 3080 Ti price comparison

The price point often plays a crucial role in the decision-making process for typical consumers. Like many of the 40-series, the RTX 4070 Super comes in with an attractive launch price of $599. This cheaper price point making it a better choice for those looking to upgrade their graphics card without breaking the bank. On the other hand, the RTX 3080 Ti demands a premium price tag of $1,199.

However, have either of the cards seen a decrease in price since they came out? We’ve taken a look at the price history of each of the cards on the reputable price-tracking website Camelcamelcamel to weigh in on the recent price trends of the RTX 4070 Super and the 3080 Ti.

Price history graph showing fluctuations of an RTX 4070 Super vs RTX 3080 Ti on Amazon, with notable lowest, highest, and current price points highlighted.
(Image source: Camelcamelcamel)

As you can see from the graph above, although the ASUS Dual GeForce RTX 4070 Super OC has had a bit of price fluctuation, for over a month it has been settled around the $599 figure. This adds up, as the MSRP of the card was $599: so, this represents a broader market trend of the RTX 4070 Super still being close to its original price tag, and it seems like some of the more expensive overclocked variants might be coming down to around $600 too.

A line chart depicting historical price changes of RTX 4070 Super vs RTX 3080 Ti, with annotations showing the lowest ever, highest ever, current, and average prices of these products
(Image source: Camelcamelcamel)

On the other side of the spectrum, the GIGABYTE GeForce RTX 3080 Ti Gaming OC is currently priced at $1467.62 – well over double the price of the 4070 Super. However, it has also seen far more drastic price drops, falling down to its lowest price of $829 around Black Friday 2022. So, while it’s more expensive, you’re far more likely to get the 3080 Ti in a good deal, and as it’s older it can be found far cheaper than its MSRP.

Having already discussed how the RTX 3080 Ti offers a better gaming experience, it is ultimately unsurprising that these additional benefits would come with a catch. However, for some, this model will remain the ultimate goal and worthy of investment. However, the RTX 4070 Super is comparatively more affordable and, for those not too invested in specs and performance, a genuinely solid option.

Our verdict

Choosing between the RTX 4070 Super and RTX 3080 Ti ultimately depends on individual preferences, budget constraints, and performance expectations. We would say that the RTX 3080 Ti is still worth it, especially if you buy with the intention of high-level gaming and have the financial capability to do so. However, the RTX 4070 Super still provides a commendable balance of performance and affordability, making it a good option for many users looking for a solid GPU.