Today, we’ll compare the 3080 10GB Vs 3080 12GB to clarify. If you’re curious how the card compares to Nvidia’s current portfolio, check out our RTX 4080 vs. 3080 comparison.
- The specs for the RTX 3080 10GB and RTX 3080 12GB are different, but the RTX 3080 12GB is 5-6% better than the RTX 3080 10GB.
- The RTX 3080 10GB works just as well as the 12GB version at 1080p and 4K, which makes it a better choice for these settings.
- The RTX 3080 12GB stays 2-3°C cooler than the RTX 3080 10GB, but it needs more power.
- The RTX 3080 12GB costs $100 to $200 more than the 10GB version. The RTX 3080 12GB costs about $200 more than models that are cooled with water.
- The RTX 3080 12GB isn’t as easy to find as the RTX 3080 10GB.
Newly Launched RTX 3080 12GB
Nvidia released the first RTX 3080 on September 17, 2020. The RTX 3080 family began with the 10GB, 12GB, and Ti models. The RTX 3080 12GB concluded this family on January 11, 2022. Nvidia quietly released this card without disclosing it. The RTX 3080 12GB was slightly more potent than the 10GB version due to some enhancements.
Compare the specs of both GPUs to see the changes and improvements.
RTX 3080 10GB Vs RTX 3080 12GB Specifications
|Name||Nvidia GeForce RTX 3080 10GB||Nvidia GeForce RTX 3080 12GB|
|Node||Samsung 8nm||Samsung 8nm|
|Core Clock||1440 MHz||1260 MHz|
|Boost Clock||1710 MHz||1710 MHz|
|Memory||10GB GDDR6X||12GB GDDR6X|
|Memory Bandwidth||760.3 GB/s||912.4 GB/s|
|Memory Clock||1188 MHz (19 Gbps effective)||1188 MHz (19 Gbps effective)|
|Memory Bus||320 bit||384 bit|
|Transistors||28,300 million||28,300 million|
|Power Connector||1x 12-pin||1x 12-pin|
|Launch Year||Sep 17, 2020||Jan 11, 2022|
|Interface||PCIe 4.0 x16||PCIe 4.0 x16|
Only a few differences between the 10GB and 12GB RTX 3080 variants. These differences improve performance slightly. Nvidia provided more than just extra VRAM to the RTX 3080 12GB. The two graphic cards share many similarities. Nvidia’s September 2020 Ampere architecture powers both cards. Both use the same 8nm Samsung node and design.
Core Clock And Boost Clock
Compared to the 12GB variant, the 10GB RTX 3080 should have fewer features. Not exactly. The lower VRAM model leads to some specifications. RTX 3080 10GB has a 1440 MHz core frequency, whereas the 12GB version has 1260 MHz.
This is critical when comparing two graphic cards like we are now. The RTX 3080 10GB excels in increasing game FPS. Both GPUs have 1710 MHz boost clocks.
Memory And Memory Bandwidth
Memory or VRAM is the main difference between the cards. We offer GDDR6X-based 10GB and 12GB models. The RTX 3070’s GDDR6 memory was slower and used more power.
The RTX 3080 12GB has 912.4 GB/s memory bandwidth and more VRAM than the 10GB version, which has 760.3. The RTX 3080 12GB’s faster VRAM-to-core data transmission compensates for the 10GB’s higher core clock.
Memory Clock And Memory Bus
Both GPUs have the same memory clock but different memory bandwidths. Memory clocks are VRAM speeds. Both cards transfer 19GB/s at 1188 MHz. The memory bus is another way to calculate memory bandwidth, which measures GPU data flow. The RTX 3080 12GB’s 384-bit memory bus beats the 10GB’s 320-bit. After considering all memory considerations, this does increase FPS.
RT Cores, CUDA Cores, And Tensor Cores
Nvidia GPUs have RT cores for Ray Tracing. These cores expedite the mathematical operations needed to trace light to create a realistic scene virtually, hence the term “Ray Tracing.” The 10GB and 12GB RTX 3080s have 68 and 70 RT cores, respectively. CUDA and Tensor cores do complicated calculations like RT cores. CUDA cores are more accurate than Tensor cores.
Check out our separate post on RTX 4080 Vs RTX 3090
The RTX 3080 12GB has 8,960 more CUDA cores and 280 more Tensor cores than the RTX 3080 10GB. Tensor cores mainly help with rendering tasks and Deep Learning Super Sampling (DLSS), while CUDA cores help games keep a steady frame rate (FPS). So, it’s clear that the RTX 3080 12GB strikes again, this time with slightly better speed.
RTX 3080 10GB Vs RTX 3080 12GB: Benchmarks On 1080p, 1440p, And 4K
On-paper specifications don’t indicate a card’s performance. Benchmark tests accurately distinguish performance differences between cards. BullsLab Benchmarks tested the RTX 3080 10GB and 12GB on his strong i9-12900K processor and 16GB RAM.
Red Dead Redemption 2
One of the most immersive open-world games with massive geography is tried first. This map features dense vegetation in grassy places, accurate snow in ice-cold locations, and a sandy desert setting. High textures and shaders make it GPU-intensive.
Thus, on 1080p, the graphic cards differ by 4 FPS. The RTX 3080 10GB averages 132 FPS versus 137 FPS for the 12GB version. The 10GB GPU runs at 1920 Mhz and the 12GB at 1965 Mhz. For the 1% lows, the RTX 3080 10GB usually had 48-84 FPS, while the 12GB variant had 46-68 FPS. Depending on the character’s position, FPS increased gradually, with the 10GB leading with roughly 7 FPS.
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Performance and temps were identical. The 12GB RTX 3080 ran at 71°C, whereas the 10GB ran at 73°C. The 12GB RTX 3080 has a higher TDP and power consumption. It uses 376 W compared to 312 W for the 10GB model. The 12GB model uses more power than its TDP, whereas the 10GB variant uses less.
1440p results are similar to 1080p. The RTX 3080 12GB led with an average of 5 FPS as the character encountered numerous gaming scenarios. The 10GB edition had 115 average FPS and the 12GB version 120, with both values fluctuating. The 10GB RTX 3080’s 1% lows were 68-74 FPS, hovering around 70 FPS. The 12GB model showed a 48-62 FPS swing.
The 10GB GPU runs at 1845-1920 Mhz and the 12GB at 1950-1965 Mhz, higher than their boost clocks. Both graphic cards reached 72°C, however the 12GB version was more steady. The 10GB device consumed roughly 310 W, whereas the 12GB model showed large fluctuations, ranging from 379 to 401 W, with an average of 390 W.
Again, the average FPS difference between the GPUs is 4 FPS. The average FPS dropped to roughly 90 this time. RTX 3080 10GB averaged 90 FPS, whereas 12GB averaged 94. Both GPUs hit 60 FPS on 4K, although the 10GB version suffered.
The 10GB RTX 3080 maintained 53 FPS at the typical 1% lows, but the 12GB model increased from 51 to 55 FPS. Both cards fared similarly here. The RTX 3080 12GB ran at 72°C, whereas the 10GB ran at 74°C.
Power consumption decreases from RTX 3080 12GB. It used 380 W and fluctuated less than at 1440p. On 4K, the RTX 3080 10GB utilized 315 W, up 5 W from 1440p.
Forza Horizon 5
Next in our RTX 3080 10GB vs. 12GB, comparison is a highly realistic car racing simulator in Mexico that includes even the most minor features across the landscape. Forza Horizon 5’s HD visuals and realistic graphics don’t require a powerful CPU, but the GPU does. Let’s try both RTX 3080 models.
The average FPS is greater than Red Dead Redemption 2’s 1080p statistics. The 10GB RTX 3080 averaged 107 FPS, while the 12GB model averaged 115. The 1% lows were consistent and beautiful. RTX 3080 10GB and 12GB maintained 90 and 95 FPS, respectively.
The game’s location greatly affected both graphic cards’ temps. The 10GB model’s temperatures averaged 69°C. The 12GB model ranged from 61°C to 66°C but generally hovered around 64°C.
The RTX 3080 10GB consumed 235 W to 259 W, averaging 255 W. The 10GB RTX 3080 consumes less electricity than the 12GB version. It absorbed 245–284 W, averaging 270 W.
Both GPUs average 90+ FPS at 1440p, with a 3-4 FPS difference. The RTX 3080 12GB averaged 97 FPS, while the 10GB averaged 94. Average 1% lows are similar. The 10GB model maintained 80 FPS, whereas the 12GB model maintained 81 FPS.
RTX 3080 12GB temps drop somewhat. RTX 3080 12GB temperatures ranged from 59°C to 66°C, averaging 62.5°C. Since it mainly ran at 69°C, the RTX 3080 10GB temps remained steady.
The smaller VRAM model of the RTX 3080 consumed 245 W to 284 W, averaging 275 W. Since the 12GB model on 1080p used this much electricity, this shift is fascinating. The 12GB model used 253–303 W, averaging 293 W.
On 4K, the two cards had similar average FPS. Usually 6-7 FPS, this gap rises and falls simultaneously. RTX 3080 10GB averaged 71 FPS, whereas 12GB averaged 78 FPS. The RTX 3080 10GB got 59 FPS, compared to 1% lows. RTX 3080 12GB had a record-low 65 FPS. The 1% lows drop 20 FPS compared to 1440p. Both GPUs scored 1% below 60 FPS on 4K, which is significant.
Unlike the previous resolutions, the RTX 3080 10GB operated at roughly 74°C, with a few outliers where it dipped to 72°C. Since it averaged 65°C, the RTX 3080 12GB maintained similar temps. The RTX 3080 10GB consumed 273–304 W, averaging 296 W. RTX 3080 12GB power consumption ranged from 292 W to 351 W, averaging 339 W. The 12GB model used more electricity than the 10GB model.
God Of War
Our next game is a PS4 release with ultra-high-definition graphics and extensive details. God of War is GPU-dependent due to its many textures and features. It also needs a powerful CPU.
For a GPU-intensive game, FPS shouldn’t be crazy high. The RTX 3080 10GB’s average FPS varied from 130 to 160 FPS. The 10GB model averaged 140 FPS. The 12GB model averaged 145 FPS and was consistent. The RTX 3080 10GB’s 1% lows hovered between 95 and 100 FPS, never dropping below 95 FPS. The 12GB RTX 3080, however, maintained 106 to 108 FPS.
Temperatures are critical. The RTX 3080 10GB reached 74°C. Despite game location changes, both GPUs maintained values. RTX 3080 12GB ran at 49°C. Finally, this game’s power use. The RTX 3080 10GB averaged 314 W during gameplay, fluctuating between 319 W and 306 W. The RTX 3080 12GB used 386 W on average and 392 W at its peak.
The RTX 3080 10GB’s 1440p average FPS was much higher than 1080p’s. It averaged 110 FPS, meaning the resolutions changed by 30 FPS. This difference includes GPUs and solutions. The 12GB model averaged 119 FPS. Let’s examine both cards’ 1% lows to understand performance. RTX 3080 10GB 1% low FPS never dipped below 80. The RTX 3080 12GB averaged 86 FPS compared to the lowest.
1440p results match 1080p temps. RTX 3080 10GB runs at 74°C at 1440p. RTX 3080 12GB runs at 74°C. It is warmer than the 10GB model on 1080p. The 10GB RTX 3080 consumes 317 W. This card can output 313 W to 322 W. 12GB runs draw 398–404 W.
4K will lower FPS. As expected, the RTX 3080 10GB averaged 70 FPS. The RTX 3080 12 averaged 75.5 FPS at this resolution, gaining 5 FPS. From 1440p to 4K, both GPUs gained over 40 FPS. Compared to the average FPS, the 10GB edition of the RTX 3080 dropped almost 20 FPS to 55 FPS at the 1% lows. The RTX 3080 12GB has a 1% low of 60 FPS, 5 FPS higher than the 10GB version.
RTX 3080 10GB and 12GB ran at 76°C. The 10GB model’s temperatures improved, while the 12GB model’s 4K temps increased. The 10GB version always used less power. It averaged 317.5 W, somewhat higher than 1080p but lower than 1440p. The 12GB model averaged 405 W and peaked at 415 W.
This beats all previous games. The RTX 3080 12GB used 87 W more than the 10GB version. Despite reduced temps, the RTX 3080 12GB remains power-hungry.
Overall Gaming Performance
Our RTX 3080 10GB vs. 12GB guide’s benchmark tests are complete, so it’s time to compare the GPUs’ performance using a graph. This clarifies which card is better in which field.
First, both graphic cards’ average frame rates. The 12GB RTX 3080 leads after testing all five titles at all three resolutions.
The RTX 3080 12GB outperforms the 10GB version by 2.8 average FPS on 1080p. Resolution increases the average FPS gap. The RTX 3080 12GB outperforms the 10GB version on 1440p by 7%. The last resolution closes the gap again. 6 FPS separates the RTX 3080 10GB and 12GB. RTX 3080 Vs. 3080 Ti Gaming Benchmarks show that the RTX 3080 10GB performs comparable to the 8GB version.
After noting the average FPS of both graphic cards, compare their power usage to determine which is best. After five games, the results are clear.
The RTX 3080 12GB was the most power-hungry after testing all games. At 1080p and 1440p, the RTX 3080 10GB is 12.5% and 18% more power-efficient than the 12GB model. Compared to 4K power usage, the 10GB model wins by almost 19.5%.
Finally, we discuss temperatures, a critical factor in choosing a good graphics card. Customers always desire a powerful GPU with low temps. Let’s compare the RTX 3080 10GB and 12GB’s temperatures.
Comparing the two cards yields comparable results. The RTX 3080 12GB is more excellent than the 10GB version. RTX 3080 12GB runs 3.75% cooler at 1080p than the 10GB variant. 1440p results are identical; hence the margin is zero. On 4K, the 12GB leads again with 3.75%.
3080 10GB Vs 3080 12GB: Price And Availability
Price and availability are the most important factors in buying. Since the RTX 3080 10GB was released two years before the 12GB, let’s start with its price. Nvidia released a V2 version since it was outdated. No hash rate limiting improves cryptocurrency mining performance.
The RTX 3080 10GB’s MSRP started at $699 but increased over time. The cheapest card on Amazon costs a little over $900 and is usually a tri-fan model. Water-cooled models cost $1,100–$1,300. Its availability is extensive and varied. Choose superior cooling or RGB cards. That would raise GPU prices.
However, the RTX 3080 12GB may cost more than the 10GB version. However, Amazon sells fresh Zotac ones for $900. Feature-rich GPUs cost over $1,200. The radiant-mounted card costs $1,400, while the water-cooled variation costs over $1,500. The market is flooded with the 10GB RTX 3080Ti, making this card scarce. Its scarcity may make color and lighting choices difficult.
Which One To Get RTX 3080 10GB Or RTX 3080 12GB?
After carefully considering numerous important elements, it is time to choose a card. If you want to play at 1080p or 4K, the RTX 3080 10GB has the best average FPS. 12GB may be better for 1440p gaming. At 1080p and 4K, the RTX 3080 12GB is warmer than the 10GB edition. It operates at 10GB temperatures on 1440p. The temperature difference is small, though.
However, power consumption distinguishes cards. The RTX 3080 12GB consumes over 10% more power at every resolution than the 10GB version. Both are priced similarly, but the 12GB is more. The RTX 3080 10GB is cheaper than the other water-cooled GPUs. The cheapest RTX 3080 12GB is perfect for budget gamers. If you have a big money, you can buy the premium RTX 3080 12GB.
In the vast expanse of the graphics card cosmos, the RTX 3080 10GB and the RTX 3080 12GB stand as titans, each vying for supremacy in the gaming realm. The former, with its 10GB GDDR6X VRAM, dances gracefully through pixelated universes, delivering breathtaking performance.
Yet, the latter, empowered by 12GB GDDR6X VRAM, dares to dream beyond conventions, unearthing new vistas of graphic prowess.
As gamers and creators traverse the maze of choice, they must weigh the scales of need and ambition. Will the 10GB marvel suffice, or is the 12GB’s expanse a future-proof investment? Ultimately, it’s a riveting clash of technology, where preferences and aspirations color the canvas of decision-making.
Does the RTX 3080 12GB only differ in terms of VRAM from the RTX 3080 10GB?
The RTX 3080 12GB has changed in many ways, such as having more RT cores, tensor cores, CUDA cores, memory bus, memory speed, and thermal design power (TDP). The performance of the graphic card as a whole is improved by these elements.
Is the RTX 3080 12GB worth it?
If we leave out the least expensive and most expensive versions of the RTX 3080 12, it costs about the same as the RTX 3080 10GB. With all of its features, though, the speed boost is only about 5-6%. So, if you don’t have a lot of money, it’s better to get the RTX 3080 10GB.
Does the RTX 3080 12GB consume more power than the RTX 3080 10GB?
With its improved speed, the RTX 3080 12GB does use a lot of power at all resolutions. It sometimes uses more power than its 350 W of TDP.
What is the difference between a 10GB and 12GB GPU?
In addition to having more video memory, the 12GB model has a memory bus with 384 bits. Together, this brings the actual bandwidth up to 912GB/s, which is a solid 20% increase over the 10GB model. The 12GB model is actually the same as the RTX 3080 Ti because it has the same amount of memory and the same size bus.
How long will 3080 12GB last?
This GPU can play 4K games at high speeds and do them well. The 3080 Ti’s design and technology make it possible for the GPU to do DLSS and ray-tracing well. If you want to buy this GPU, you can be sure that it won’t need to be upgraded for the next 4–5 years.