RTX 4090 vs 3090 Ti vs 3090 (specs, performance, and price)

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The RTX 4090 has officially launched, and though Lovelace stock levels aren’t bountiful enough for everyone to grab one: that’s not a problem because these seasoned Ampere 3090 Ti and 3090s are still here.

We’re going to be going over all the key differences between the RTX 4090 & 3090 Ti & 3090. They are all GPUs that wrestle for the Silicon Throne, though perhaps there is space for all three.

The RTX 4090 kickstarted a cascade of graphics card launched in late 2022 and early 2023. We’ve since seen the RTX 4080 and 4070 Ti, alongside Radeon’s RX 7900 XTX and XT. We’ve put in the work to build out content that covers all of the latest GPU releases – and we’re confident that we’ve covered the most relevant information.-

In order to differentiate the three, we’ll be using data from WePC’s professional GPU benchmarker Seb, and using it alongside technical specifications, gaming performance, and overall cost and worth.

RTX 4090 vs 3090 Ti vs 3090 – What is the best RTX graphics card?

RTX 4090

ArchitectureLovelace
CUDA Cores16,384
Boost Clock (GHz)2.52
Base Clock (GHz)2.23
GDDR6X Memory 24GB
Memory Bandwidth
Maximum Resolution7680 x 4320
Connectivity SupportHDMI 2.1a , 3 x DisplayPort 1.4a
Dimensions304mm x 137mm
Minimum Overall Power Demand850W

After launching on the 12th October, the RTX 4090 stock vanished within mere moments, so there must be good reason for that, right?

As the flagship GPU in the new RTX 40-series, you expect the 4090 to be the quickest and most powerful, and this is reflected by the 16,384 CUDA cores sizzling away inside this monster GPU. Over 50% higher than the technical next best, the 4090 steamrolls over the competition in terms of computational ability.

Read now: Where to buy RTX 4090

Is the RTX 4090 worth it?

It’s a valid question considering the hefty price tag and it’s difficult to ignore the sheer volume of enthusiasm that’s greeting the 4090 since it’s release on the 12th October. Ultimately, we’d say the RTX 4090 is worth it – but only if you’ve got a serious need for it and serious money.

The RTX 4090 will set you back $1,599.

RTX 3090 Ti

ArchitectureAmpere
CUDA Cores10,752
Boost Clock (GHz)1.86
Base Clock (GHz)1.67
GDDR6X Memory24GB
Memory Bandwidth
Maximum Resolution7680 x 4320
Connectivity SupportHDMI 2.1a , 3 x DisplayPort 1.4a
Dimensions313mm x 138mm
Minimum Overall Power Demand850

The 3090 Ti’s release was defined by the serious lack of stock surrounding it. Though, that should hopefully be a thing of the past as now they are readily available from tech retailers at really good prices.

No matter what your needs are, the 10,752 CUDA cores will certainly be enough. Gamers, designers, producers, and content creators will all be thoroughly satisfied with whatever they’re equipped with.

Clock speeds range between 1.67 and 1.86 GHz, and though these speeds are eclipsed by the 4090s monstrous specifications, that doesn’t mean that this card is an invalid competitor. The 3090 Ti is crammed full of power – with 24GB of GDDR6X memory meaning that this GPU is rarely going to struggle to process much.

This insanely high amount of VRAM allows you this card to approach 8K gaming, though this is a party that the 4090 and 3090 are also invited to.

The major difference between the 4090 and the 3090 Ti is the serious difference in FPS that benchmarks have been displaying.

The RTX 3090 Ti will cost you $1,650.

RTX 3090

Credit: WePC
ArchitectureAmpere
CUDA Cores1,0496
Boost Clock (GHz)1.70
Base Clock (GHz)1.40
GDDR6X Memory24GB
Memory Bandwidth
Maximum Resolution7680 x 4320
Connectivity SupportHDMI 2.1a, 3 x DisplayPort 1.4a
Dimensions313mm x 138mm
Minimum Overall Power Demand750W

The most affordable graphics card on this list (how often can you say that about a 3090) still clocks in with incredibly impressive specs and stands up for itself in the benchmarks.

10,496 CUDA cores mean that this GPU is capable of an insane volume of computations, which the 24GB GDDR6X memory only assists in.

With clock speeds between 1.4 and 1.7 GHz, this GPU is still lightning quick, despite the notable gap between itself and the 4090.

The RTX 3090 will cost you $1300 here.

4090 vs 3090 Ti vs 3090 Benchmarks

This is the juicy bit all GPU comparisons lead to – the stats.

CS:GO (Avg. FPS)Cyberpunk 3077 (Avg. FPS)DOOM (Avg. FPS)SofTR (Avg. FPS)
ROG RTX 4090 (1080p)863168516300
ROG RTX 4090 (4K)37774285184
ROG RTX 3090 Ti (1080p)604125350179
ROG RTX 3090 Ti (4K)36870262100
MSI RTX 3090 (1080p)754135331230
MSI RTX 3090 (4K)3612116298
Benchmarks courtesy of Seb Kozlowski of WePC.

The 4090 expectedly outperforms the other cards by a bit of a landslide, with outstanding results at 1080p and equally impressive 4K benchmarks.

All of the cards struggle with Cyberpunk 3077, however that’s expected.

Your gaming needs really determine how you differentiate between the cards. If you’re a competitive gamer who doesn’t need to go beyond the 1080p threshold, then the RTX 3090 is definitely the card which suits you best. For the price you pay and the performance you’re given, the RTX 3090 is the most cost efficient and valuable.

If you’re hoping to game in 4K, the RTX 3090 is still a valid option, however if you’re also hoping to reach FPS levels at a consistently high rate the 3090 Ti or 4090 would be better suited for you.

Honestly, if you’re a gamer any single one of these cards is going to a great option. You’re more likely to need a 4090 or 3090 Ti if you’re a content creator or video renderer whose workflow is bottlenecked by GPU performance.

Read now: Black Friday RTX 3080 & 3080 Ti deals

What is better the RTX 4090 or 3090 Ti or 3090?

On sheer horsepower alone, of course the RTX 4090 takes the cake. But, choosing on which graphics card on specs alone is neither fair nor particularly helpful unless you’re a professional gamer. Also it’s good not to fan the flames considering the RTX 4090 sold out in seconds after its release.

The bottom line is that the performance of the 30 series will not degrade, and still achieve great frames on their own. The RTX 4090 outperforms the 30 series in almost areas, but at what cost? (hint: it’s higher than what it’s retailing for and costs more than just your money).

If you’re a graphics designer, you’ll probably find the RTX 3090’s 24GB VRAM buffer super helpful, whilst if you’re using your GPU mostly for gaming it’s going to mean very little.

The bottom line is that if you’re content with your graphics card, then you don’t need the latest technology. What I will add though is that it’s a shame you cannot get DLSS 3 on the RTX 30 series which would increase your frame rates by almost double.

If you’re trying to get your hands on an RTX 4090 this year, check out our RTX 4090 stock tracker page here.

You might also want to wait and see until the AMD RDNA 3 7000 series comes out next month.

RTX 4090 vs 3090 Ti vs 3090 FAQs

What is NVIDIA DLSS 3?

DLSS will accelerate performance of up to 4x, meaning you’ll get to experience richer, more immersive fully ray-traced games at 4K. If you own a GPU from the RTX 30 series, you can use DLSS 2 Super Resolution that is powered by AI to accelerate the performance in over 215 games and apps.

Can my GPU do raytracing?

If you’ve got a more recent graphics card than the GeForce RTX 2060 or Radeon RX 6700 then it should be able to do ray tracing.

About the Author

Amaar Chowdhury

Amaar loves retro hardware and boring games with more words than action. So, he writes about them daily.