The Nvidia Geforce RTX 3080 Ti was launched in June 2021. The card bumped the specs by a slight margin, resulting in higher benchmark scores and in-game performance. The 3080 Ti was introduced at a price tag of $1,119, and with this card, Nvidia exploited the then-market scenario.
The RTX 3080 Ti is supposed to replace the quite capable RTX 3080, which was introduced for $699 in 2020. This made RTX 3080 a great value-for-money choice when it came to UHD gaming. This makes the RTX 3080 Ti feel overpriced for a slight spec bump.
Both Nvidia and AMD have milked the market situation for extra profits. The cards still sold way above their MSRP and they stayed out of the layman’s reach. But things are changing as graphics card pricing is plummeting and more GPUs are hitting the MSRP mark.
Is RTX 3080 Ti a good option for gaming?
If one asks whether the RTX 3080 Ti is a good gaming card, the answer would be a yes. The card is a rendering powerhouse. It is one of the most premium GPUs available on the market. But a bunch of other factors will decide whether gamers should get it in August 2022.
The card looks extremely impressive on paper. It can pull off all modern AAA titles at 4K resolutions without a hiccup. But a quick look at the competition will set Nvidia on the backfoot. The company got carried away with the pricing of all its new launches. The list includes the RTX 3070 Ti, the RTX 3050, the RTX 3090 Ti, the RTX 3080 12 GB, and this card.
We cannot blame Nvidia for this as the US market is currently facing record inflation. This inflation is part of the reason that caused the global chip shortage. Demand for high-end video gaming cards has hit numbers Nvidia was not ready for.
When launched back in the summer of 2021, this was not a problem because graphics cards were being badly scalped. Now that GPU prices are plummeting, a new problem has surfaced. No one wants to spend so much for the RTX 3080 Ti when they have better options to choose from. This creates a massive problem for all overpriced Nvidia cards.
The competition for the RTX 3080 Ti
AMD has come up with a few cards to compete against the RTX 3080 Ti. Its spiritual competitor is the Radeon RX 6800 XT, but the current pricing scenario pushes the card to compete against the Radeon RX 6900 XT. AMD had introduced the RX 6900 XT to compete against the RTX 3090 24GB card.
The Radeon RX 6800 XT is slightly slower than the RTX 3080 Ti in most games. The card also falters in terms of ray tracing performance. AMD's ray tracing implementation has only entered its first generation with the RDNA 2 architecture. It failed against the already mature Ampere architecture of Nvidia, which had two extra years to mature.
The RX 6900 XT, on the other hand, is a flagship video card from AMD. With 16GB of GDDR6 memory, this card is more impressive both on paper and in video games.
Apart from the slightly slower ray tracing performance, this card beats the 3080 Ti in every other aspect. In games with no ray tracing implementation, we see the AMD flagship pull further by a huge margin.
In this benchmark video, we can see the RX 6900 XT falter in titles with demanding ray tracing features. Examples include Shadow of the Tomb Raider and Cyberpunk 2077. The RX 6900 XT pulls ahead of the 3080 Ti and even beats the RTX 3090 in games like Forza Horizon 4 and Battlefield V. These games have no support for ray tracing features.
While the performance difference is a thing, the RX 6900 XT is one of the best graphics cards out there today. The card will not disappoint any gamer in any modern AAA title, no matter what resolution he is playing at.
Considering the underwhelming price-to-performance ratio of 3080 Ti, it cannot serve as a recommendation for high-end 4K gaming rigs. With the RTX 40 series knocking at the corner, it gets even more difficult to recommend this card. The 3080 Ti is reportedly selling for over $1,000. Users can find both the RX 6800 XT and the RX 6900 XT below the $1,000 mark.