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Nvidia RTX 3080 review roundup: "One of the largest generational leaps in GPU history"

Nvidia RTX 3080 review roundup
(Image credit: Nvidia)

'Next-gen' is the go-to buzzword on everyone's lips right now, and the Nvidia RTX 3080 reviews show that it's living up to the hype. Besides offering affordable 4K for PC gaming, most write-ups doing the rounds praise its more efficient architecture and benchmark-smashing performance. Judging by the critical response, it's the new top-dog and one of the best graphics cards in years.

Following the reveal of the brand-new graphics card range early this September, there was a lot of discussion about how the Nvidia RTX 2080 offers the biggest step up in power that we've ever seen. This wasn't just bluster, as it turns out; our sister-site TechRadar notes that the 3080 is "an absolute powerhouse of a graphics card, bringing about one of the largest generational leaps in GPU history". Similarly, PC Gamer states that it's "a silicon arrow to the heart of anyone still running an RTX 2080 Ti".

The only commonly-agreed downsides seem to be rooted in the card's need for a hefty power unit (it requires a lot of juice) and a price-tag that's still pretty significant. However, the positives appear to outweigh most cons. Because the Founder's Edition card is 33% faster than the 2080 Ti on average according to Tom's Hardware, it's not hard to understand why.

We've rounded up all the Nvidia GeForce RTX 3080 reviews we could find here, and will add more as they come in. Taken alongside announcements for the Xbox Series X, Xbox Series S, and PS5, it's more than enough to get us psyched for the next generation of gaming. 

TechRadar: 4.5 / 5

"The Nvidia GeForce RTX 3080 is an absolute powerhouse of a graphics card, bringing about one of the largest generational leaps in GPU history. Anyone that's interested in 4K gaming should be paying attention to this graphics card – even if the benefits diminish at lower resolutions".
Bill Thomas  

PC Gamer: 92 / 100

"It feels almost redundant to call the new Nvidia RTX 3080 the fastest graphics card you can buy. I mean, today, it absolutely is, and after the first reveal that was pretty much inevitable. The initial performance figures from the green team's grand unveiling were no joke: this thing takes the RTX 2080 Ti outside and gives it a good, sound kicking. It's not even close".
Dave James 

Tom's Hardware: Unrated

"Nvidia's GeForce RTX 3080 Founders Edition is here, claiming the top spot on our GPU benchmarks hierarchy, and ranking as the best graphics card currently available — provided you're after performance first, with price and power being lesser concerns... Nvidia has thrown down the gauntlet, clearly challenging AMD's Big Navi to try and match or beat what the Ampere architecture brings to the table".
Jarred Walton

IGN: 9 / 10

"The Nvidia RTX 3080 Founders Edition is an amazing graphics card. Compared to the RTX 2080 Super, it offers dramatically improved performance, especially at 4K, and even outperforms the much more expensive 2080 Ti. Simply put, for $699, the RTX 3080 is both a welcome breath of fresh air and the gust needed to blow the doors off of 4K gaming".
Chris Coke

Engadget: 89 / 100

"The RTX 3080 is a huge performance jump from NVIDIA’s previous RTX cards, especially when it comes to 4K gaming with ray tracing. The new Ampere architecture is vastly more efficient, and you’ll benefit from better cooling with the Founder’s Edition card too".
Devindra Hardawar

The Verge: 8 / 10

"If you’re interested in making the jump to 1440p instead of 4K, then the RTX 3080 will give you so much headroom I don’t think you’ll need to upgrade your PC for years. On the 4K side, you’ll be upgrading to a card that provides solid frame rates with all of the settings maxed out without putting a hole in your wallet. 4K PC gaming is here, and it’s finally a lot more affordable".
Tom Warren

Eurogamer / Digital Foundry: Unrated

"For two years now, the pinnacle of PC graphics technology has been defined by the Turing-based RTX 2080 Ti. It's fast, very fast. It's so fast in fact, that there's a strong argument that any resolutions below ultra HD or high resolution ultrawide won't see the GPU horsepower fully utilised on anything other than the fastest gaming CPU. And yet the RTX 3080 takes everything to the next level - you're looking at an average range of 65 to 80 per cent more performance up against 2080, and around 24 to 37 per cent more grunt than 2080 Ti. With ray tracing factored into the equation, the boosts can be even more significant".
Richard Leadbetter and Will Judd

For more tech-related advice, check in with our guide to the best gaming PCs (available here for UK users) and the best gaming laptops.

As one of our Hardware Editors, Benjamin looks after many of the tech reviews, board game features, deals, and buying guides you’ll see on GamesRadar+.