Nvidia RTX 3070 16GB and 3080 20GB graphics cards killed off, rumor has it

(Image credit: Nvidia)

Nvidia’s RTX 3080 with 20GB of video RAM is no longer happening, and the same is true of the purported spin on the RTX 3070 graphics card with 16GB of memory, according to the latest from the GPU grapevine.

So yes, this is a rumor about rumored products, so ensure you have plenty of salty condiments to hand, but that said, there have been pretty strong and consistent nuggets of speculation regarding the existence of the RTX 3070 and 3080 with double the VRAM.

The latest report from Videocardz insists that while Nvidia was intending to launch these graphics cards in December, this plan has all changed now according to two independent sources.

Apparently, Nvidia has told graphics card manufacturers that the RTX 3080 20GB and RTX 3070 16GB versions have not just been postponed to next year, but actually canceled (alongside the potential RTX 3070 Ti which has also reportedly been canned).

Of course, this is just speculation – as is everything we’ve heard thus far about these rumored card variants – so it is possible that we could still see some of them turn up in 2021.

Stock worries?

So what’s going on here? Well, the obvious problem would seem to be Nvidia’s major issues around getting stock of existing RTX 3000 GPUs out there, with demand far outweighing supply, and scalpers sadly making the most of the situation.

The RTX 3080 and 3090 have remained elusive and difficult to buy, and the incoming RTX 3070 was even delayed by Nvidia to help ensure that there are better stock levels at launch. Sadly, the latest from the rumor mill indicates that Nvidia could still be struggling to achieve the kind of inventory levels it will need – particularly for this cheaper (relatively speaking) GPU.

Given these kind of thorny problems, then, it’s not exactly surprising that despite the firm’s rumored intention, it may not have been feasible for Nvidia to push out these beefier spins on the RTX 3070 and 3080, and spreading the range even more thinly over different models doesn’t make sense in this regard. All this is, we must stress, just theorizing, naturally.

Videocardz did hear from one source that GDDR6X memory shortages may have played a part in the cancellation of the RTX 3080, which uses that VRAM – although this can’t be the reason why the RTX 3070 with double the memory has apparently got the chop (because it uses straight GDDR6, not the new faster RAM).

The upshot of all this is that those who might have been waiting for these variants with more VRAM can forget that idea, and just go for the vanilla RTX 3070 or 3080 – assuming they can buy one somewhere.

However, according to Videocardz, Nvidia does still have the RTX 3060 Ti coming, which has been rumored for a while now, and should be out at some point in November. We’ve already seen that graphics card pop up in listings for the EEC, but again, obviously nothing is guaranteed when it comes to GPU rumors…

It’s likely that Nvidia will want to counter AMD’s RX 6000 launch with something, though. Especially if it doesn’t have beefier high-end graphics cards with double the VRAM to go up against Big Navi.

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).