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Tuesday, November 1, 2022

Nvidia GeForce RTX 4090 Specifications

The Nvidia GeForce RTX 4090 currently reigns as the king of graphics cards — to see how performance stacks up, check our extensive list of GPU benchmarks and the best graphics cards. It uses Nvidia's latest Ada Lovelace graphics architecture, with the largest of the Ada chips: AD102. The combination of lots of cores and high clock speeds results in incredible levels of performance — the reference Founders Edition has a 2,520 MHz boost clock, and often runs at over 2.7 GHz in testing.

Note that the RTX 4090 doesn't use a fully enabled AD102 chip, as it has 128 of the potential 144 SM (Streaming Multiprocessor) blocks enabled, along with 72MB of the potential 96MB of L2 cache. We'll probably see a GeForce RTX 4090 Ti in the future, as there's certainly room for it.

Nvidia GeForce RTX 4090 Specifications
Process TechnologyTSMC 4N
Transistors (Billion)76.3
Die size (mm^2)608.4
Streaming Multiprocessors128
GPU Cores (Shaders)16384
Tensor Cores512
RT Cores128
Boost Clock (MHz)2520
VRAM Speed (Gbps)21
VRAM Bus Width384
L2 Cache72
Render Outputs176
Texture Mapping Units512
FP32 TFLOPS (Single-Precision)82.6
FP16 TFLOPS with Sparsity (FP8)661 (1321)
Bandwidth (GB/s)1008
Total Board Power (Watts)450
Launch DateOctober 12, 2022
Launch Price$1,599

Nvidia uses a custom TSMC 4N (4nm Nvidia) process node for the RTX 4090, with a die size of 608.4mm2 — a bit smaller than the previous generation GA102 used in the RTX 3090. The change in process allowed Nvidia to roughly triple the number of transistors, which also helps with the performance. Total raw computational power measures 82.6 teraflops for 32-bit floating-point, over 661 teraflops for FP16, and 1.3 petaflops for AI workloads that can leverage the FP8 support on the Tensor cores.

Again, we strongly suspect Nvidia isn't putting all of its cards on the table just yet, if you'll pardon the pun. There will almost certainly be a higher tier 40-series at some point, though given the brouhaha of melting 16-pin 12VHPWR power connectors and adapters, perhaps Nvidia will take a bit more time to work out the kinks.

If you're not quite willing to go whole hog and splurge on the RTX 4090, the RTX 4080 should arrive on November 16, 2022. That's a big drop in specs and potential performance, possibly the largest gap we've seen from Nvidia in recent years. On paper, the 4090 has 69% (!) more compute performance than the 4090, 41% more memory bandwidth, and 50% more memory capacity. Considering it only (/sarcasm) costs 33% more than the 4080, this is arguably the better value.

Those waiting for a 40-series card that won't absolutely break the bank will need to hold out hope for the RTX 4070. We expect those will arrive in January most likely. Considering the canceled RTX 4080 12GB, the 4070 will likely slot into a similar space, but hopefully it won't have the same $899 price point as the unlaunched card.

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