RTX 4070 Super vs RTX 3090 Ti – could it be close?

It's a close call, but is the RTX 4070 Super the better card?

RTX 4070 Super vs RTX 3090 Ti - could it be close? Image shows the RTX 4070 Super above the RTX 3090 Ti on a light green blue gradient background.

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As one of the most sought-after graphics cards, the superior performance and abundant VRAM of the RTX 3090 Ti come with a premium price tag. However, with its 40 Series refresh, Nvidia’s newest mid-range GPU is coming to shake things up as a powerful yet affordable offering that might even rival the 3090 Ti. So the question that arises here is, with such a vast price difference, could the RTX 4070 Super even come close to the RTX 3090 Ti? Let’s find out with an RTX 4070 Super vs RTX 3090 Ti face-off.

RTX 4070 Super vs RTX 3090 Ti specs comparison

SpecificationsRTX 4070 SuperRTX 3090 Ti
ArchitectureAda LovelaceAmpere
Process Size5 nm8 nm
Transistors35,800 million28,300 million
Base Clock1980 MHz1560 MHz
Boost Clock2475 MHz1860 MHz
Memory Clock1313 MHz21 Gbps effective1313 MHz21 Gbps effective
Memory Size12 GB24 GB
Memory Bus192 bit384 bit
Bandwidth504.2 GB/s1,008 GB/s
Shading Units716810752
SM Count5684
Tensor Cores224336
RT Cores5684
L1 Cache128 KB (per SM)128 KB (per SM)
L2 Cache48 MB6 MB
TDP220 W450 W
RTX 4070 Super vs RTX 3090 Ti specs comparison table

With its state-of-the-art Ada Lovelace architecture and 5 nm process size, the RTX 4070 Super offers improved performance and efficiency. The RTX 3090 Ti, on the other hand, uses an 8 nm process size and the slightly older Ampere architecture.

GPU performance largely depends on clock speeds, and this is where the RTX 4070 Super also has an advantage. It surpasses the RTX 3090 Ti, which has a base clock of 1560 MHz and a boost clock of 1860 MHz, with a base clock of 1980 MHz and a fantastic boost clock of 2475 MHz.

However, the RTX 3090 Ti overcomes this disadvantage with its higher number of shading units, cores, and better memory speed. While the RTX 4070 Super has 12 GB of GDDR6X memory, the RTX 3090 Ti easily doubles this figure with a massive 24 GB. Additionally, the memory bus and bandwidth of the RTX 4070 Super, at 192-bit and 504.2 GB/s, respectively, are halved compared to the RTX 3090 Ti’s 384-bit and 1008 GB/s. This shows that the RTX 3090 Ti is potentially way ahead when it comes to memory-intensive applications like gaming or graphic designing.

Furthermore, the RTX 4070 Super also falls short compared to the RTX 3090 Ti when it comes to actual core counts. The RTX 3090 Ti features 10752 shading units, 84 SM counts, 336 Tensor Cores, and 84 RT Cores. However, the RTX 4070 Super boasts 7168 shading units, 56 SM (Streaming Multiprocessor) counts, 224 Tensor Cores, and 56 RT Cores.

Despite the small processor size, the RTX 3090 Ti has a higher TDP (power consumption) because of the increased number of cores. While the RTX 4070 Super has a TDP of only 220 W, the RTX 3090 Ti’s TDP is more than double at 450 W.

RTX 4070 Super vs RTX 3090 Ti performance

In a series of tests encompassing gaming, 3D rendering, and AI-related workloads, the RTX 3090 Ti consistently showcases superior performance. Games run smoother with higher frame rates, complex scenes render faster, and AI tasks benefit from the increased Tensor and RT Core counts.

While the RTX 4070 Super delivers commendable performance, it struggles to match the sheer processing power of the RTX 3090 Ti in demanding scenarios. Gamers and content creators seeking the pinnacle of performance may find the RTX 3090 Ti a more compelling option, albeit at a significantly higher price point.

The table below shows the frame rates the RTX 4070 Super and the RTX 3090 Ti provide at 4K resolution across different games, including Shadow of the Tomb Raider, Cyberpunk 2077, Hitman 3, and more.

GameRTX 4070 SuperRTX 3090 Ti
Shadow of the Tomb Raider95111
Watch Dogs: Legion6266
Cyberpunk 20775955
Hitman 369112
Far Cry 613285
Source: The Verge, TechSpot, IGN

RTX 4070 Super vs RTX 3090 Ti price and value

When it comes to price and value, one has to recognize the substantial price difference between these two graphics cards, showing that while you can compare them, there are slightly different audiences being targeted. The RTX 4070 Super, with a price tag of $599, offers a compelling balance between performance and affordability, and is coming in as a strong competitor to the mid-range GPU market. In contrast, the RTX 3090 Ti demands a premium of $1,999, and is one of the most elite graphics cards you can invest in for your setup. So, the decision between the two depends primarily on the user’s budget and performance requirements.

Final verdict – is the RTX 4070 Super better than the RTX 3090 Ti?

As a gamer, it’s only natural that I recommend you invest in the RTX 3090 Ti – if you can afford it. While the RTX 3090 Ti undeniably offers top-tier performance, the RTX 4070 Super provides a more cost-effective solution for users who may not require the absolute pinnacle of GPU capabilities. As far as their performances go, realistically the two just aren’t that close. The RTX 3090 Ti clearly has the upper hand in most games, thanks to its higher number of cores and better memory speed, but the 4070 Super is certainly commendable for a mid-range card.

Marla writes across a wide range of topics across PC Guide, including AI, PC hardware, and news on the latest tech releases. She's a passionate writer that's interested in the future of technology.