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NVIDIA GeForce RTX 4080 Super

Platform(s): PC
Genre: Hardware
Developer: NVIDIA
Release Date: Jan. 31, 2024


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Hardware Review - 'Nvidia GeForce RTX 4080 Super'

by Cody Medellin on Jan. 31, 2024 @ 6:00 a.m. PST

This latest iteration of NVIDIA Ada Lovelace architecture-based GPUs delivers up to 52 shader TFLOPS, 121 RT TFLOPS and 836 AI TOPS to supercharge gaming and creating — and provide the power to develop new entertainment worlds and experiences.

On its own, Nvidia's GeForce RTX 4080 is a pretty good card. The performance it delivers on all resolutions is quite good with and without ray tracing, and the presence of DLSS helps it reach levels that would be considered great if it weren't for the existence of the RTX 4090. The problem was that its initial MSRP was quite high — to the point where it makes more sense to spend a little more to get the RTX 4090 and get a tremendous uplift in performance. A little more than a year has passed, and Nvidia announced at CES 2024 that the RTX 4080 will be replaced by the GeForce RTX 4080 Super. This is interesting because unlike its other Super siblings, the RTX 4080 Super is coming in at a lower MSRP.

The card we received for review is the Founder's Edition from Nvidia, and it matches up with the Founder's Edition of the RTX 4070 Super in a few spots. The dual fan blower/exhaust style is still present, as is the 12-pin connector, which terminates into three standard 8-pin connectors instead of two. This is a fully blacked-out card, with only a hint of lighting by the top fan edge and the card name. It is a full three-slot card that weighs as much as the RTX 4090, and it has the same dimensions to boot. The card is quiet, and you need to make the card work really hard to get any fan noise.

As expected based on what we've seen with the previous Super cards, the spec sheet shows some improvements over the regular RTX 4080, but they aren't vast — perhaps a few more cores here and a slight boost clock there. It still uses the same type and amount of VRAM as the RTX 4080 did, and the required power supply for the 4080 Super still asks for 750 watts. The big spec that people are going to pay attention to is the cost. One of the reasons why the RTX 4080 didn't do so well against the RTX 4090 was the fact that the former had an MSRP of $1,199 while the latter had an MSRP of $1,599. The $400 difference was sizable, but the performance delta was so great that paying more actually made sense at the time.

Things are vastly different now. The RTX 4080 Super comes in with an MSRP of $999, which is $200 less than the MSRP of the original RTX 4080. The price for the latter is expected to drop since it is now discontinued, but it is difficult to predict by how much, especially since the current crop of RTX 4080 cards are still hovering a little over $1,199 MSRP at the time of this review. Meanwhile, the RTX 4090 has gone up in price to roughly $2,000 due to several external factors. With that much of a discrepancy between the RTX 4090 and RTX 4080 Super, getting the former is no longer a smart buy if you're concentrating on gaming. The comparison between them still has to be made, since there is presently nothing between the RTX 4090 and RTX 4080 Super. Since the RTX 4070 Ti Super came out recently and is the next active lower card in the stack, we also added the results of that card's benchmarks for good measure.

The PC we're using for the tests is a Ryzen 7 7700X equipped with 32GB of G.Skill Flare X5 Series DDR5-6000 RAM in a dual channel configuration. The motherboard is the MSI B650-P Pro. We're using Windows 11 version 23H2, and the Nvidia press driver is version 551.22. We focused our testing on 1440p and 4K resolutions, since testing at 1080p would produce ludicrous numbers with and without ray tracing involved. Unless noted, all of the graphical settings were placed at their maximum individual levels instead of relying on presets, and DLSS upscaling was always set to Quality with frame generation on when available. As always, we recommend using this review in conjunction with others that may have a wider selection of cards to test with to get a clearer picture about where the RTX 4080 Super card stands overall.


We start the benchmarking run with the 3DMark suite of synthetic benchmarks. With Fire Strike, the RTX 4080 Super hits a score of 46777 at 1080p, 30452 at 1440p, and 17124 at 4K. Time Spy at 1440p has the RTX 4080 Super achieve a score of 24335 and 11916 when the resolution goes to 4K. Port Royale at 1440p hits a score of 18128 on the RTX 4080 Super, and the same card for the Speed Way test at 1440p hits a score of 7381.

The DirectX Ray Tracing test is one that takes place in the Port Royale environment but completely renders the scene using a number of ray-traced samples in 1440p. Using two samples, the RTX 4080 Super easily produces a score of 451.6fps. The jump to six samples hits a frame rate of 168.74, and an increase to 12 samples nets a frame rate of 86.75. Twenty samples is where the RTX 4080 Super runs into trouble, but a score of 52.57fps does remain respectable.

The final synthetic test is Port Royale DLSS, which measures performance at different resolutions using various forms of DLSS and once again measures everything in fps. At 1440p, the native performance of the RTX 4080 Super hits 84.11 fps. With DLSS 2, that score goes up to 138.67, and DLSS 3 pushes it further to 161.32. When moving the test to 4K, the native performance hits 40.37fps, but that goes up significantly with DLSS 2 as it hits 71.51fps. Turn on DLSS 3, and that score goes even higher, almost hitting triple digits with 99.84fps.

When compared against the 4070 Ti Super and the RTX 4090, the RTX 4080 Super in these synthetic benchmarks sits squarely between both of the other cards in some of the older tests, like Fire Strike and Time Spy at 1080p and 1440p. However, the newer tests that aim for ray tracing at both 1440p and 4K show that the gulf between the 4080 Super and the 4090 is much wider. While real-world behavior in games is more important than synthetic benchmarks, the results prove to be a very good guide for what to expect when testing real games.

Red Dead Redemption II

The first game on the list is Red Dead Redemption II. Rockstar's game is perhaps the oldest one on the list, but it can still give some cards a good workout. It also helps diversify the list a bit, as it is using the Vulkan backend compared to the other games, which use DirectX. At 1440p, the 4080 Super achieves a frame rate of 104fps with a 38fps low, while moving to 4K sees the card hit 74fps with a 39fps low. Those are good numbers, but DLSS makes them go higher. At 1440p with DLSS, the 4080 Super hits 116fps with a 38fps low, and at 4K hits 91fps with a 38fps low.

Call of Duty: Modern Warfare III (2023)

The benchmark for Modern Warfare III is more focused on multiplayer, so ray tracing doesn't become a factor in the benchmark. It also means that every card can run the game perfectly fine without the need for any upscaling. For the 4080 Super, that means a frame rate of 149fps with a 126fps low at 1440p and 104fps with a 85fps low at 4K. If you insist on running DLSS, it'll mean a frame rate of 223fps with a 125fps low at 1440p and 135fps with a 79fps low at 4K.

Assassin's Creed Mirage

The latest in Ubisoft's long-running series performs quite well on both cards in all resolutions without needing DLSS, but the tests show some big discrepancies with the 1% lows from time to time. At 1440p, the 4080 Super achieves 150fps with a 75fps low and DLSS bumps that to 160fps with a 83fps low, results that place it very close to the averages on the RTX 4090. Go to 4K, and the differences normalize again, as the 4080 Super hits 97fps with a 49fps low and 130fps with a 58fps low once DLSS is on. By comparison at this resolution, the RTX 4090 hits 124fps with a 35fps low and then goes to 153fps with a 51fps low once DLSS is activated.

Forza Motorsport (2023)

Forza Motorsport is good but not as tightened up as the Xbox Series X version. Despite some issues as far as long initial laid times go and a befuddling DLSS system, it uses a good deal of ray tracing during races on the cars and the environment. At 1440p, the 4080 Super hits 121fps with a low of 106 with ray tracing off and 93fps with a low of 76fps with ray tracing on. Move to 4K, and the card hits 103fps with ray tracing off and 74fps with a low of 52fps ray tracing on. They're good numbers, and while they're a good bump above what the 4070 Ti Super gets in this game, the performance delta between the 4080 Super and the 4090 is also the same, making the 4080 Super's results quite impressive.

Forza Horizon 5

Forza Horizon 5 is well optimized, and while ray tracing isn't a big deal compared to its more serious sibling, it does have working DLSS. Then again, you might never turn on the technology if your goal is to hit 60fps on these cards. What's impressive is that the 4080 Super achieves a frame rate north of 100fps in all resolutions, both with and without ray tracing on, a feat only matched by the 4090 as far as Nvidia cards are concerned. The only categories where this isn't true pertain to the lows at 4K, but considering that the result is a 99fps low at 4K with ray tracing on and a low of 98fps with DLSS on, the margin of error can still make it qualify for triple digits across the board at any given moment.


Due to the nature of the benchmark, the 1% lows can't be read, so all we can get are the averages. At 1440p, the RTX 4080 Super does very well in all four categories. Ray tracing off hits 125fps and 153fps with DLSS on. Ray tracing on at this resolution sees the 4080 Super get 101fps and 131fps with DLSS on. Go to 4K, and the results get low but are still very good. Ray tracing off sees the card get 77fps, which goes up to 107fps with DLSS on. Turning on ray tracing sees the 4080 Super squeak into playable frame rates with a 60fps average, while DLSS places it in a more comfortable 89fps.


Returnal stutters quite frequently during the benchmark, so it has very low 1% lows all around, but the game still puts up some good numbers overall. The RTX 4080 Super at 1440p easily hits the triple digits for the average, so while you may want to use DLSS to boost the lows, you'll still get very desirable performance at this resolution. Things are a bit different with the 4080 Super when you move to 4K. Ray tracing off hits 79fps with a 26fps low, but DLSS boosts it greatly to 127fps with a 34fps low. Ray tracing on at 4K proves to be heavy, but frame rates are still playable at 62fps with a 22fps low; the performance becomes more comfortable with DLSS on, as the 4080 Super produces an average of 115fps with a 32fps low at this setting.

The Callisto Protocol

The Callisto Protocol is the one game on the list that doesn't have DLSS, but FSR2 works well for performance, since both technologies are a match for each other in this department. At 1440p, the RTX 4080 Super hits 142fps with a low of 60fps with ray tracing off, while turning it on achieves a frame rate of 91fps with a 56fps low. FSR2 boosts things by a bit; ray tracing off at this resolution hits 164fps with a 69fps low and 94fps with a 71fps low with ray tracing on. At 4K, the 4080 Super still does well in this game. Ray tracing off hits 87fps with a 31fps low and, much like Forespoken, the card hits 60fps with a 23fps low with ray tracing on. Turn on FSR2, and things improve to more comfortable levels. Ray tracing off turns in a score of 116fps with a 49fps low, and turning on ray tracing produces 87fps with a 52fps low.

Avatar: Frontiers of Pandora

The latest version of the Snowdrop engine does a great job of showing off tons of foliage and other elements in an open world, but it comes at a cost, as the game can get quite heavy when in well vegetated areas. One thing to note is that we finally got DLSS to work with the game, so the chart finally has those numbers in for all three cards in the comparison. At 1440p, the RTX 4080 Super performs very well with all configurations. Ray tracing off has a frame rate of 124fps with a 98fps low, and DLSS helps it jump to 172fps with a 138fps low. Turn on ray tracing, and everything still looks good from a performance front, as the native resolution hits 98fps with a 78fps low and DLSS makes it jump back to 148fps with a 117fps low.

At 4K, the 4080 Super struggles a bit natively. Ray tracing off at this resolution has the card hitting 67fps with a 56fps low, while turning on ray tracing drops things a touch with a 51fps average and a 43fps low. Turning on DLSS helps out greatly in both cases, as ray tracing off achieves 108fps with a 89fps low; with ray tracing on, the card hits 88fps with a 72fps low. That leaves the RTX 4090 as the only card to achieves over 60fps with ray tracing on at 4K without the need for any upscaling technology.

Cyberpunk 2077

Rounding up the benchmark list is Cyberpunk 2077, a game that has quickly become the go-to title for Nvidia's RTX 4000 series of cards, given its bevy of ray tracing and upscaling features. One thing to note is that we turned on the path tracing option when performing ray tracing tests, so the game becomes a much heavier workload. With that feature on, at 1440p, the RTX 4080 Super barely squeaks by at what was once a console-acceptable frame rate at 34fps with a 24fps low. It is also the first card in the recently released Super trio to actually run the ray-traced, path-traced game at 4K, albeit with a miserable frame rate of 15fps and a 9fps low. Turn on DLSS, and things get much better; at 1440p, the 4080 Super produces 96fps with a 47fps low, and 4K hits 41fps with a 23fps low. For reference, the RTX 4090 also needs DLSS to run at 69fps with a 34fps low at 4K with ray tracing and path tracing.

For those who aren't after ray tracing and path tracing and just want to run the game with rasterized graphics, the 4080 Super does just fine at 1440p. At that resolution, the card hits 115fps with a 76fps low, while DLSS lets it go up to 132fps with a 66fps low. The 4080 Super struggles at 4K, as it hits 53fps with a 38fps low, so it's dependent on DLSS to reach a more playable frame rate of 88fps with a 40fps low. That seems low considering the age of the game, but when you realize how heavy Cyberpunk 2077 is with its 2.1 version, that's a pretty good accomplishment.

With our benchmarks concluded, the RTX 4080 Super sits in an interesting spot. Compared to the RTX 4070 Ti Super, the 4080 Super sees a decent bump in performance. The ability to hit playable frame rates at 4K with ray tracing on and every setting at max on all but the heaviest of games gives it a real edge over the 4070 Ti Super. The 4080 Super pitted against the RTX 4090 is a little different, as some games have the cards rather close to one another at 1440p, but 4K shows the RTX 4090 assert its dominance in those very same games. It's expected, but with the 4090 now at double the MSRP of the 4080 Super, choosing the former is only viable if you're doing more than gaming on the machine.

Then there's the story of the 4080 Super versus the original RTX 4080. While we no longer have our original 4080 available for benchmark testing, it is logical to surmise that the differences between the 4080 and 4080 Super in performance aren't that large based on our reviews of the other Super cards in relation to their predecessors and superiors in the current stack. It feels like the 4080 Super wins by default on all counts because it is priced lower than the outgoing 4080. As mentioned earlier, prices for the RTX 4080 haven't dropped, and while that is expected to happen once the 4080 Super releases, those hoping for a huge cut for the 4080 might not see it immediately unless retailers want to immediately cut their losses and heavily promote the 4080 Super.

If you ignore the presence of the 4090, then the Nvidia GeForce RTX 4080 Super is the top card for most people. Unless you're playing the heaviest of games or going after path tracing, you can max out all of the settings at 4K and still hit exactly at or a little above 60fps before relying on DLSS to take you further. The specs are solid, and while the $999 MSRP can still be considered high, it is a cheaper choice when compared to the highly inflated RTX 4090 and the outgoing RTX 4080. If you're in the market for a high-end video card, the RTX 4080 Super easily makes the shortlist of cards.

Score: 8.0/10

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