Leaked pictures of the cancelled Nvidia RTX 3090 Super show us a card worth buying rather than what we got

A black-shrouded RTX 3090 Super graphics
(Image credit: KittyYyuko/tbNiCk_dn86z)

The oft-rumored but unreleased Nvidia GeForce RTX 3090 Super appears to have been revealed in all its black-shrouded glory, thanks to a seller on a second-hand marketplace in China.

The Nvidia RTX 3090 Super, which (as VideoCardz points out) we have seen previously in some online leaks, has never been officially confirmed by Nvidia, but there was plenty of speculation and rumors swirling the refreshed releases of Nvidia Ampere-series GPU models.

Now, a new photo posted online at X by @KittyYYuko appears to show a much better view of the Super than we saw over a year ago.

The Nvidia RTX 3090, which is still one of the best graphics cards on the market more than two years after its release, was one of the most sought after GPUs of the entire Ampere generation, so almost immediately after its release, there was widespread speculation about its mid-generation refresh.

Nvidia ultimately opted for the Ti variants and the Nvidia GeForce RTX 3090 Ti was released in early 2022, though TechRadar computing editor Jackie Thomas was none-too-impressed by the marginally more powerful but significantly more expensive card in hew review.

The Nvidia GeForce RTX 3090 Super likely wouldn't have fared any better, given that the GPU in the Super variant would have been identical to what was ultimately released under the RTX 3090 Ti branding. However, the all-black shroud with black-painted X-trim around the Founders Edition card would at least have made the RTX 3090 Super a more interesting card to look at.

What could have been...

The difference between the Nvidia RTX Ti and RTX Super graphics cards would have only really been an issue of branding and, apparently, material design, so in the grand scheme of things nothing would have changed in terms of pricing or performance.

But I gotta say, I like the cut of the RTX 3090 Super's jib.

To be clear, this only would have been relevant for the Founders Editions of the various RTX 3000-series releases (and maybe even the Nvidia RTX 4000-series), but it definitely would have made the Founders Edition GPUs more in demand and much cooler to own, assuming you could have found one back during the cryptobubble.

As for whether we'll ever see a return of the Super branding  to the Nvidia RTX line of GPUs, I don't think that's likely. Seeing as sales of existing GPUs are down as it is, releasing yet another variant of a GPU that may not be purchased in enough quantity to justify the effort doesn't make much sense.

Never say never, though, and it's always interesting to think about what might have been in a different timeline.

John Loeffler
Components Editor

John (He/Him) is the Components Editor here at TechRadar and he is also a programmer, gamer, activist, and Brooklyn College alum currently living in Brooklyn, NY. 

Named by the CTA as a CES 2020 Media Trailblazer for his science and technology reporting, John specializes in all areas of computer science, including industry news, hardware reviews, PC gaming, as well as general science writing and the social impact of the tech industry.

You can find him online on Threads @johnloeffler.

Currently playing: Baldur's Gate 3 (just like everyone else).