Bad news Intel and AMD – Nvidia RTX 4090 could go on sale in August

Nvidia graphics card rendering
(Image credit: Nvidia)

Nvidia’s RTX 4090 graphics card could be on sale as soon as August, if the latest speculation on the next-gen Lovelace GPUs is correct, with the RTX 4080 and 4070 following on across the next two months.

VideoCardz brings word from two separate sources on specific months for the release timeframes of Lovelace products, after we heard about the likely staggered launch order in another rumor earlier today.

This new info matches that earlier theorizing in terms of the order, but insists that the RTX 4090 will hit shelves in August as mentioned, and that the RTX 4080 will arrive in September, with the RTX 4070 appearing in October.

Let’s stay skeptical here, of course, but those are all purported on-sale dates, not just the reveal dates, and VideoCardz observed that the announcement date remains unconfirmed (while acknowledging that Kopite7kimi has previously floated the idea that the unveiling could happen in July – which would fit with an August launch to retail for the next-gen flagship).

Another final thing to note here is the revelation that while the RTX 4090 and RTX 4080 will indeed use different chips (AD102 and AD103 GPUs respectively) as previously rumored, they could be built on the same board (PG139).

Analysis: A surprising potential development – and a serious worry for AMD?

We’re seriously surprised that Nvidia could possibly muster an August launch for the RTX 4090 – we’ve been hearing September previously, and that seems more likely, as August is bearing down upon us rapidly.

Of course, the sources cited may turn out to be wrong, and indeed even if this is Nvidia’s plan as of now, VideoCardz admits that “things might change very quickly”, and it’s not exactly rare for last-minute hardware or production issues to interfere with an intended gameplan. In short, launch dates can easily slip, and the tech site also notes that the sources say to “expect some dates to change because AIBs still have lots of RTX 30 inventory left”.

So, certainly don’t treat these timeframes as anything like concrete. If third-party card makers do have a lot of RTX 3000 stock still to shift, that could put Nvidia in a somewhat awkward situation. If Nvidia can go for an earlier launch like August for the RTX 4090 – to put serious pressure on AMD’s RDNA 3 launch timeline, and let’s not forget Intel Arc desktop either – it’ll surely want to, but then again, Team Green won’t want to annoy its partners.

With the announcement date for Lovelace GPUs still apparently unconfirmed, and the August, September and October release dates purportedly slotted in place, we guess what we could see happening is Nvidia delaying the initial reveal to August (rather than July), maybe with RTX 4090 graphics cards then immediately going on sale. (Thereby giving a bit more room for RTX 3000 products to be sold off, before Lovelace captures everyone’s attention and perhaps stymies Ampere GPU upgrades for third-party vendors).

All of this is so much guesswork, but it’s an exciting possibility that the new flagship RTX 4090 could be pretty close to hitting the shelves. That could leave AMD looking rather off the pace – some rumors have pointed to a September or October launch for the first RDNA 3 offerings, and worryingly there still seems to be a lot of confusion around the specs and fundamental design of Team Red’s next-gen GPUs (which is something of a hint that they may not be all that close to fruition).

In short, it’s starting to look like Nvidia might fire the first salvo of the next-gen GPU battle well ahead of AMD, but as ever, let’s not get carried away with the rumor peddling. Next week, we could be hearing a different tune from the grapevine, or indeed we might hear more about AMD’s progress…

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).