Nvidia’s RTX 5000 graphics cards – the consumer take on Blackwell – might be delayed until 2025 if a new rumor is right, but Team Green could have a little something to fill the gap.
That’d be a supercharged version of the RTX 4090 flagship, which may just be something to hold the fort against RDNA 4 this year - if a certain YouTube leaker is correct (add plenty of salt at this point).
RedGamingTech (RGT) tells us that two sources have indicated that next-gen Blackwell GPUs could be delayed, and that Nvidia is back at testing an RTX 4090 Super variant as a result. (This has been rumored before, albeit as an RTX 4090 Ti, but if Nvidia is making a faster version of the flagship, it’d surely be a Super take on the formula).
We could also get an RTX Titan GPU, on top of that RTX 4090 Super, both of which would be built on the AD102 chip (as seen in the RTX 4090, of course).
Note that Nvidia is only considering doing this right now – it may not happen in the end, but it’s one avenue currently being explored, and these graphics cards are theoretically back on the table as possibilities (where they had been abandoned before).
The rumored specs for the RTX 4090 Super see it getting a modest increase in CUDA cores (1,024 more cores), which won’t make that much difference – but better memory bandwidth (with faster VRAM) and a theoretical increase for L2 cache will have more impact.
RGT believes we should expect this refresh to be about 10% faster than the RTX 4090 on average, with performance varying from game to game depending on how much the improvements with the video memory matter to any given title.
The more powerful RTX Titan, we’re told, will throw in a few more CUDA cores (1,792 cores more than the RTX 4090) and it’ll double up the VRAM to 48GB (the 4090 Super will stick with 24GB). It’s likely to not be that much faster than the RTX 4090 Super in many use cases, with the real upgrade being that seriously beefed-up video RAM, with the GPU being intended for applications where that’s going to be put to good use.
Analysis: A matter of AI priorities, one way or another
A major consideration here is whether it’s really worth pumping out an RTX 4090 Super and RTX Titan for Lovelace at this point, if the AD102 chip these are built on can be used by Nvidia in heavyweight high-performance computing and AI GPUs. You know, the products that sell for a ton of money – way, way more than the asking price of this theoretical Lovelace flagship refresh (and the Titan).
However, we could look at this the other way around, and that’s what RGT suggests. This means that Blackwell’s heavyweight graphics cards are going to be prioritized – as even bigger money spinners – so consumer Blackwell, RTX 5000, may be pushed back as a result (with Team Green’s production capabilities for the next-gen being somewhat constrained).
And given this, Nvidia might need something to hold out against AMD in the consumer space in 2024, so that could be the RTX 4090 Super (plus Titan), if only as a kind of morale booster for Team Green fans, and reassertion of its leadership. (Remember too that Team Green could theoretically stay competitive against AMD’s next-gen range, which looks to be topping out at mid-range GPUs, simply by rejigging the pricing of its new RTX Super refreshes).
We’re not hugely convinced by all this, but RGT’s sources are indicating this is the case. Indeed, one source says that Blackwell may not launch until Q2 2025, and others aren’t sure that it won’t be later, even – which sounds dubious, particularly as other rumors floating around are pretty consistent about RTX 5000 availability coming at the end of 2024, or the start of next year.
If you’re holding out for an RTX 5000 GPU, this might be worrying news, then, but don’t get carried away with any single rumor, as ever.
If we start hearing about delays from other corners of the rumor mill, mind, then it might be time to start listening more intently to this possibility. Do note that the current expectation elsewhere is that while Blackwell should land late in 2024, we’ll likely only be getting an initial RTX 5090 launch, with the rest of the next-gen GPUs to follow the next year.
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Darren is a freelancer writing news and features for TechRadar (and occasionally T3) across a broad range of computing topics including CPUs, GPUs, various other hardware, VPNs, antivirus and more. He has written about tech for the best part of three decades, and writes books in his spare time (his debut novel - 'I Know What You Did Last Supper' - was published by Hachette UK in 2013).