The Nvidia RTX 4080 12GB is currently the cheapest GeForce RTX 4000 series graphics card to be officially announced by the company, along with the more expensive RTX 4080 16GB and RTX 4090. The two RTX 4080 models represent how much VRAM they each have, and one card seems to have more performance and better specs than the other.
Take a look at the Performance section of the official Nvidia product page As for the RTX 4080, the 12GB model lags behind its 16GB counterpart in all three benchmarks to varying degrees. Although both graphics cards are somewhat neck and neck while running Microsoft Flight Simulator, there is a noticeable difference in frame rate in games like Cyberpunk 2077 and Warhammer 40,000: Darktide.
Only when referring to the RTX 4080 specification table is the reasons for this difference in performance clear. Not only does the 12GB card have less GDDR6X VRAM than the 16GB model, but the number of CUDA cores is significantly fewer and the memory bus is narrower as well. We’ll need to see how these disparities affect frame rates outside of these Nvidia-provided benchmarks when we’re dealing with a GeForce GPU, but we’ll likely see similar trends in our results.
To further confuse things, it looks like the RTX 4080 12GB will only be available from AIB partners, with the only RTX 4080 16GB being the Founders Edition treatment. However, either pixel drive could be the best graphics card for your system, depending on your budget and needs.
If the RTX 4000 series remains too rich in your blood, the RTX 4070 or RTX 4060 might be the way to go, but there’s no sign of when Nvidia will announce these cards just yet. For those of you who can’t wait that long, the AMD RDNA 3 release date is set to fall on November 3, if you don’t mind putting a Radeon card in your machine.