Leaked images of the RTX 3090 Ti GPU show it's a power hungry beast

Nvidia showing RTX 3090 Ti at CES 2022
(Image credit: Nvidia)

Nvidia's RTX 3090 Ti was announced back at CES 2022, though things have been suspicious quiet ever since. Luckily, leaked images of the card are appearing online, giving us hope that we can soon actually go out and buy one.

Specifically, an image of an alleged Galax RTX 3090 Ti graphics card has been shared by an established leaker on Twitter, @wxnod, which only shows the 12+4-pin (12VHPWR) PCIe 5.0 auxiliary power connector, which will be the upcoming standard for PCIe Gen5 graphics cards. 

As with all leaks, take this with a pinch of salt as we have no way of verifying if this photograph is real.

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Galax's custom GeForce RTX 3090 Ti Boomstar graphics card will be exclusive to the Asian Pacific market, and will allegedly feature a triple-fan cooling system and that aforementioned 12+4-pin auxiliary power connector as this is anticipated to be an especially power-hungry GPU.

The new PCIe 5.0 power connector can deliver from 150W to 600W of power, but we don't have any information on the actual power draw of the RTX 3090 Ti. We currently estimate it to be around 450W, which will likely force any interested parties to upgrade their current power supply if they want to install one of these GPUs into their system.

There are also rumors floating around that despite being briefly showcased during CES, the RTX 3090 Ti won't actually be getting a founders edition, and will instead only be available through third-party manufacturers, but we've seen little evidence to support this.

At any rate, we will soon find out as the RTX 3090 Ti is expected to be formally launched on March 29 after a long delay, so we will need to keep our eyes peeled for any announcements regarding where you can find the card for sale.

Analysis: Who is the RTX 3090 Ti actually for?

The RTX 3090 Ti has been experiencing some pretty long delays, so while it's great that this card looks like it's finally going to appear on the shelves within the next few months, its release is cutting things pretty fine.

We expect that the next generation of Nvidia graphics cards will be announced towards the end of the year, which should include the GeForce RTX 4090 which is expected to be much faster (performance gains will be strong this time around, going by the rumor mill). 

This is anticipated to swiftly replace the RTX 3090 Ti as the most powerful consumer Nvidia GPU on the market, so what's the point of releasing it so close to its anticipated successor?

A working theory is that Nvidia may be using recycled chips from the development of its RTX 4000 series (codenamed Lovelace). Given the current state of the global chip shortage, we can hardly blame team green for not wanting to waste chips that don't meet standards set for its next generation of cards, and it's something that we've previously seen rumored with the RTX 3090, of which some SKUs were said to originally be for the RTX 3080 Ti.

We do hope that we see the card release soon as it makes less sense to buy one the closer we get to Lovelace's debut, as it's unlikely that this card will see much of a price drop when the next generation is released. 

For now, the RTX 3090 Ti still feels a bit out of place and out of time, but we will keep our performance expectations high.

Via Toms' Hardware

Jess Weatherbed

Jess is a former TechRadar Computing writer, where she covered all aspects of Mac and PC hardware, including PC gaming and peripherals. She has been interviewed as an industry expert for the BBC, and while her educational background was in prosthetics and model-making, her true love is in tech and she has built numerous desktop computers over the last 10 years for gaming and content creation. Jess is now a journalist at The Verge.