New Nvidia RTX 4080 graphics card rumor is hard to believe

Nvidia RTX 3080 Graphics Card
(Image credit: Nvidia)

Nvidia might be planning to launch a pair of different RTX 4080 graphics cards, supposedly equipped with 12GB and 16GB of video RAM, with both being released simultaneously if the latest from the rumor mill is to be believed.

This comes from MEGAsizeGPU on Twitter (via VideoCardz), a source we’d take with a pinch more skepticism than usual.

As mentioned, the theory floated is that there will be two different RTX 4080 models with 12GB and 16GB of VRAM, which as the leaker points out is certainly a route Nvidia has taken in the past – such as with the GTX 1060 6GB and 3GB spins.

What’s different here, though, is the assertion that both of these RTX 4080 variants will be released at exactly the same time.

In a previous tweet, the leaker suggested that these RTX 4080 variants will actually have different designs, with the 16GB model sporting a 12-layer PCB (printed circuit board), and the 12GB a 10-layer PCB. The theory is that the latter will be Nvidia’s reference design (Founders Edition) and also for third-party graphics cards, whereas the former 16GB model will be third-party only.

Both RTX 4080 cards will have a “completely different” PCB design, in fact, MEGAsizeGPU contends.

Analysis: A whole heap of doubts – but maybe there’s something here

So, what to make of this? Well, the first possibility that can’t be ruled out is that this rumor is so much hot air; as we indicated before, this isn’t one of our regular more trusted sources on Twitter.

That said, Kopite7kimi, who is a more well-known leaker on that platform, has chimed in on this one, claiming that this is at least “possible”, and further that the RTX 4080 16GB variant mentioned might have previously been cast as an RTX 4090 version with an AD103 chip (rather than AD102).

The latter possibility doesn’t make any sense to us, either, to be honest – but this does at least point to this chatter being more likely to be genuine. What seems more probable to us is that these leakers are perhaps picking up on some different RTX 4080 models Nvidia has tested at various points in development, so in that respect, this could be only so much noise from the grapevine. One of these 4080 configurations could well be the final product, likely the 16GB card in our book (as that’s certainly the VRAM loadout which has been previously rumored).

If this pair of models really are planned by Nvidia, we struggle to see that they’d be launched at the same time. Yes, Team Green has certainly pushed out different configurations of GPUs – just look at the RTX 3080, which came in 10GB and 12GB flavors, but the latter didn’t emerge until further down the line.

Another possibility is that the lesser-spec purported RTX 4080 with 12GB could actually turn out to be a pepped-up RTX 4070 (the Ti spin, presumably). Again, that’d leave it some way off still, we’d assume.

Ultimately this is one big guessing game right now, but what we can hope for in terms of the RTX 4080 is that however this GPU turns out, it could arrive before too long. That’s because a photo of a supposed finished model of this graphics cards was spotted very recently, and if genuine, this indicates that a November release timeframe – as mentioned in the past – is still a distinct possibility.

That said, there are also some rumors asserting that Nvidia might have to delay all its next-gen GPUs, save the RTX 4090, until early 2023, to give some breathing room to clear problematic excess stock of current-gen RTX 3000 models.

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).