GIVEAWAY: Sabrent Rocket 4 Plus PCIe 4.0 NVMe SSDs up for grabs!

NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3090 Founders Edition Review: The Everything Killer

NVIDIA's new GeForce RTX 3090 Founders Edition is here, and it blows everything else away. Totally annihilates the competition.

@anthony256
Published Thu, Sep 24 2020 8:00 AM CDT   |   Updated Tue, Nov 3 2020 6:54 PM CST
Rating: 100%Manufacturer: NVIDIA (NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3090 Founders Edition)

Introduction

NVIDIA promised us an insane 8K gaming graphics card when it unveiled its new GeForce RTX 3090, and now it is here -- and it is freaking amazing. It's expensive, it's huge, and the power inside of it is completely unrivaled.

NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3090 Founders Edition Review: The Everything Killer 511 | TweakTown.com
VIEW GALLERY - 127 IMAGES

NVIDIA has constantly been pushing up higher and higher when it comes to the ceiling on how powerful the graphics cards they offer above their flagship GeForce GTX and now GeForce RTX cards. We had the introduction of the TITAN graphics card series many years ago, which has had quite a few cards released under the TITAN brand over the years.

The last TITAN-branded graphics card was in the previous-gen Turing GPU architecture, with the mega-expensive TITAN RTX which packed 24GB of GDDR6 memory and a price tag of $2499. It offered a few more percentage points of performance above the GeForce RTX 2080 Ti -- but the 24GB of VRAM was instrumental for 8K gaming and professional workloads.

NVIDIA never pushed the TITAN RTX for gamers, but things changed a little with the introduction of the Ampere GPU architecture and the bombastic new GeForce RTX 3090 graphics card.

NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3090 Founders Edition Review: The Everything Killer 504 | TweakTown.com

If you want the very, very best performance out of the most insane graphics card ever made -- well, NVIDIA's new GeForce RTX 3090 is for you. If we directly compare the Turing-based TITAN RTX against the new Ampere-powered GeForce RTX 3090 you can see just how powerful the new RTX 3090 really is.

NVIDIA's new GeForce RTX 3090 Founders Edition is available today, priced at $1499.

Buy at Amazon

Sabrent Rocket Q 8TB NVMe PCIe M.2 2280 Internal SSD

TodayYesterday7 days ago30 days ago
$1299.99$1399.99$1399.99
* Prices last scanned on 12/4/2020 at 3:59 pm CST - prices may not be accurate, click links above for the latest price. We may earn an affiliate commission.

Everything You Need to Know About Ampere

NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3090 Founders Edition Review: The Everything Killer 179 | TweakTown.com
  • Ampere GPU architecture: NVIDIA has so much going on under the Ampere GPU hood, with the GA102 GPU packing a huge 28 billion transistors (that's 28,000,000,000) on the Samsung 8nm node. We have a huge 10496 CUDA cores on GA102, over double the 4608 CUDA cores on the TITAN RTX.
  • RTX improvements: NVIDIA has effectively doubled everything when it comes to RTX, where it will rips and tears your games and delivers them to your eyeballs faster than ever before with Ampere. If you want to run any RTX-powered games, you'll want a new GeForce RTX 3080.
  • GDDR6X memory: The new NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3080 has 10GB of GDDR6X memory on a 320-bit memory bus, with a huge 760GB/sec of memory bandwidth. You should see the 4K gaming results for the evidence of the Ampere GPU + GDDR6X memory slaying it.
NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3090 Founders Edition Review: The Everything Killer 907 | TweakTown.com
  • PCIe 4.0 connectivity: NVIDIA's new GeForce RTX 30 series graphics cards are now PCIe 4.0 compatible, so if you're building a new AMD Ryzen 3000 series system with an X570 motherboard -- you will be ready to rock and roll with PCIe 4.0 connectivity.
  • HDMI 2.1: 4K 120Hz + 8K 60Hz = single cable: If you are buying a new TV in the coming months or years, HDMI 2.1 is going to be something you want. It opens up the bandwidth floodgates to 4K 120Hz and 8K 60Hz over the single HDMI 2.1 cable.
  • RTX IO: NVIDIA's introduction of RTX IO with Ampere is very similar to the ultra-fast game load times on the next-gen Xbox Series X and PlayStation 5 consoles. You can read all about RTX IO right here, which is something we'll see build more foundation in 2021 and beyond.

RTX 3090 tech specs

NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3090 Founders Edition Review: The Everything Killer 105 | TweakTown.com

Just look at the sheer CUDA core count increase, from the 4608 CUDA cores inside of the TITAN RTX to the insane 10496 CUDA cores inside of the RTX 3090. We have increases across the board, with third-gen Tensor Cores (328 of them) versus second-gen Tensor Cores in the TITAN RTX (576 of them).

We have 82 second-gen RT Cores in the new RTX 3090, versus 72 first-gen RT Cores inside of the TITAN RTX while TUs get bumped up from 288 to 328 and ROPs from 96 to 112 -- nice increases across the board, with some even more impressive performance numbers.

We have the same 24GB of VRAM here -- but the new RTX 3090 gets some ultra-fast GDDR6X memory versus the slower GDDR6 (but same 24GB framebuffer) on the TITAN RTX. It's on the same 384-bit memory bus, but the new GDDR6X is clocked at a much higher 9750MHz (19.5Gbps) versus 7000MHz (14Gbps) which results in way higher memory bandwidth numbers that hit 936GB/sec on the RTX 3090 compared to just 672GB/sec.

NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3090 Founders Edition Review: The Everything Killer 101 | TweakTown.com

Just wait until you can see what this bad boy can do at 4K and more especially, 8K -- it is astonishing.

NVIDIA's new GeForce RTX 3090 has its GPU clocks at up to 1695MHz boost (but it will go much higher than that) while the TITAN RTX has its GPU boost sitting at 1770MHz. As for TGP, we're looking at 350W for the new RTX 3090 while the TITAN RTX is at 280W.

NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3090 Founders Edition Review: The Everything Killer 104 | TweakTown.com

NVIDIA has a new third-generation NVLink bridge and connector with the GeForce RTX 3090, with the new RTX 3090 the only one in the Ampere-based GeForce RTX 30 series stack that supports multi-GPU technology. The new third-gen NVLink bridge has 112.5GB/sec of bandwidth to share between two RTX 3090 graphics cards.

NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3090 Founders Edition Review: The Everything Killer 103 | TweakTown.com

Seriously, this might just be a chart and not look like much -- but the engineering that the NVIDIA team put into the thermal solution for the RTX 3080 was impressive. But man-oh-man, the cooling on the GeForce RTX 3090 Founders Edition is truly something else.

It's a triple-slot beast, but it is also very cool when it is smashing through those frames.

NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3090 Founders Edition Review: The Everything Killer 102 | TweakTown.com

See what I mean -- just wait until you (if you ever do get the chance) have it in your hands. It is the biggest reference/FE card NVIDIA has ever made. The GeForce RTX 3090 Founders Edition is a force to be reckoned with. If I ever need to defend myself from a home invader, I'm going to pull the GeForce RTX 3090 Founders Edition out of my PC and throw it at them.

NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3090 Founders Edition Review: The Everything Killer 107 | TweakTown.com

The efficiency of the cooler and its design really helps when it's inside of a PC -- versus an open-air test bench in the way I'm using it for my review. I'm in the process of building a new Intel Core i9-10900K gaming PC that I will do some more thermal tests in next week, and going forward.

Detailed Look

NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3090 Founders Edition Review: The Everything Killer 532 | TweakTown.com

NVIDIA has the same retail packaging for both its GeForce RTX 3090 Founders Edition, and the just-released GeForce RTX 3080 Founders Edition.

But it's once the card it out of the box and in your hands that you realize you have something absolutely insane in your hands, it is so massive it's almost unbelievable. All that size... that thickness... the two gigantic fans... the triple-slot design... great stuff to see from NVIDIA here.

The aesthetics on the GeForce RTX 3090 FE and RTX 3080 FE cards is astonishing, it's almost Apple-like in design.

NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3090 Founders Edition Review: The Everything Killer 504 | TweakTown.com

From the front you wouldn't tell the GeForce RTX 3090 FE from the RTX 3080 FE, but you'll notice here it is a triple-slot design.

NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3090 Founders Edition Review: The Everything Killer 505 | TweakTown.com

From the back, once again it looks identical to the RTX 3080 FE except it's a much, much bigger and thicker card.

NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3090 Founders Edition Review: The Everything Killer 515 | TweakTown.com

When the RTX 3090 FE and RTX 3080 FE are side-by-side like this, you can really begin to tell just how huge the RTX 3090 FE is in comparison. The triple-slot cooler is mammoth, but man does the card run cool -- much cooler than I had expected.

NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3090 Founders Edition Review: The Everything Killer 510 | TweakTown.com

NVIDIA continues to use its wicked new 12-pin PCIe power connector, which I might add has made the review process of installing and ripping out the RTX 3090 FE and RTX 3080 FE graphics cards. The 12-pin to dual 8-pin PCIe power adapter is super nifty to leave plugged into the card, and then unplug the dual 8-pin cables when replacing it. Much easier.

NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3090 Founders Edition Review: The Everything Killer 512 | TweakTown.com

We have the new NVLink connector here on the RTX 3090, missing from all other RTX 30 series graphics cards.

NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3090 Founders Edition Review: The Everything Killer 509 | TweakTown.com

The same display connectivity as the RTX 3080 FE, from left to right we have 3 x DP 1.4 connectors and the new HDMI 2.1 connector for single-cable 4K120 and 8K60.

NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3090 Founders Edition Review: The Everything Killer 550 | TweakTown.com

The LED lighting on the RTX 3090 FE isn't over-the-top, and is very subtle.

NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3090 Founders Edition Review: The Everything Killer 551 | TweakTown.com

So too is the very tiny 'RTX 3090' on the front of the card.

NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3090 Founders Edition Review: The Everything Killer 526 | TweakTown.com

NVIDIA's new GeForce RTX 3080 Founders Edition and GeForce RTX 3090 Founders Edition standing side-by-side looking dapper.

NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3090 Founders Edition Review: The Everything Killer 523 | TweakTown.com
NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3090 Founders Edition Review: The Everything Killer 524 | TweakTown.com
NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3090 Founders Edition Review: The Everything Killer 525 | TweakTown.com

From left to right we have the GeForce RTX 2080 SUPER FE, RTX 2080 Ti FE, TITAN RTX, RTX 3080 FE, and the new RTX 3090 FE.

NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3090 Founders Edition Review: The Everything Killer 528 | TweakTown.com

Test System Specs

Latest upgrade:

Sabrent sent over their huge Rocket Q 8TB NVMe PCIe M.2 2280 SSD, which will be my new Games install SSD inside of my main test bed. Even the MSI Lucky Dragon loves it, he was just as hungry as I was during these reviews and 20-hour days for weeks on end. Thanks, Sabrent!

NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3090 Founders Edition Review: The Everything Killer 5167 | TweakTown.com
NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3090 Founders Edition Review: The Everything Killer 530 | TweakTown.com
NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3090 Founders Edition Review: The Everything Killer 531 | TweakTown.com

I've got a new upgrade inside of my GPU test bed before my change to a next-gen test bed, where I will be preparing for NVIDIA's next-gen Ampere graphics cards and AMD's next-gen RDNA 2 graphics cards.

NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3090 Founders Edition Review: The Everything Killer 1162 | TweakTown.com

Sabrent helped out with some new storage for my GPU test beds, sending over a slew of crazy-fast Rocket NVMe PCIe M.2 2280 SSDs. I've got this installed into my GPU test bed as the new Games Storage drive, since games are so damn big now. Thanks to Sabrent, I've got 2TB of super-fast M.2 PCIe 3.0 x4 SSD storage now.

NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3090 Founders Edition Review: The Everything Killer 1160 | TweakTown.comNVIDIA GeForce RTX 3090 Founders Edition Review: The Everything Killer 1161 | TweakTown.com
NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3090 Founders Edition Review: The Everything Killer 1163 | TweakTown.comNVIDIA GeForce RTX 3090 Founders Edition Review: The Everything Killer 1164 | TweakTown.com

Anthony's Test System Specifications

Additional Images

NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3090 Founders Edition Review: The Everything Killer 1063 | TweakTown.comNVIDIA GeForce RTX 3090 Founders Edition Review: The Everything Killer 1064 | TweakTown.com
NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3090 Founders Edition Review: The Everything Killer 1065 | TweakTown.comNVIDIA GeForce RTX 3090 Founders Edition Review: The Everything Killer 1066 | TweakTown.com

Benchmarks - Synthetic

3DMark Fire Strike

NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3090 Founders Edition Review: The Everything Killer 4000 | TweakTown.com

3DMark has been a staple benchmark for years now, all the way back to when The Matrix was released and Futuremark had bullet time inspired benchmarks. 3DMark is the perfect tool to see if your system - most important, your CPU and GPU - is performing as it should. You can search results for your GPU, to see if it falls in line with other systems based on similar hardware.

NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3090 Founders Edition Review: The Everything Killer 01 | TweakTown.comNVIDIA GeForce RTX 3090 Founders Edition Review: The Everything Killer 02 | TweakTown.com
NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3090 Founders Edition Review: The Everything Killer 03 | TweakTown.com

3DMark TimeSpy

NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3090 Founders Edition Review: The Everything Killer 04 | TweakTown.comNVIDIA GeForce RTX 3090 Founders Edition Review: The Everything Killer 05 | TweakTown.com

Heaven - 1080p

Heaven is an intensive GPU benchmark that really pushes your silicon to its limits. It's another favorite of ours as it has some great scaling for multi-GPU testing, and it's great for getting your GPU to 100% for power and noise testing.

NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3090 Founders Edition Review: The Everything Killer 06 | TweakTown.comNVIDIA GeForce RTX 3090 Founders Edition Review: The Everything Killer 07 | TweakTown.com
NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3090 Founders Edition Review: The Everything Killer 08 | TweakTown.com

Benchmarks - 1080p

NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3090 Founders Edition Review: The Everything Killer 4017 | TweakTown.com
NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3090 Founders Edition Review: The Everything Killer 307 | TweakTown.comNVIDIA GeForce RTX 3090 Founders Edition Review: The Everything Killer 308 | TweakTown.com

DOOM Eternal is one of the best-looking, but superbly-optimized games of 2020 with the folks at id Software truly putting their all into the id Tech 7 engine for DOOM Eternal. We're using the Vulkan API on DOOM Eternal here.

You can buy DOOM Eternal at Amazon.

NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3090 Founders Edition Review: The Everything Killer 187 | TweakTown.com
NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3090 Founders Edition Review: The Everything Killer 4016 | TweakTown.com

Another new entry into our regular graphics card benchmarks is Red Dead Redemption 2, which is powered by the RAGE engine by Rockstar Games. The RAGE engine has been tuned from its normal use in the Grand Theft Auto series. We're also running this on the Vulkan API.

You can buy Red Dead Redemption 2 at Amazon.

NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3090 Founders Edition Review: The Everything Killer 23 | TweakTown.com
NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3090 Founders Edition Review: The Everything Killer 4006 | TweakTown.com
NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3090 Founders Edition Review: The Everything Killer 304 | TweakTown.comNVIDIA GeForce RTX 3090 Founders Edition Review: The Everything Killer 305 | TweakTown.com

Middle-earth: Shadow of War is a sequel to the popular Shadow of Mordor, which was powered by the Lithtech engine. When cranked up to maximum detail, it will chew through your GPU and its VRAM like it's nothing.

You can buy Middle-earth: Shadow of War at Amazon.

NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3090 Founders Edition Review: The Everything Killer 17 | TweakTown.com
NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3090 Founders Edition Review: The Everything Killer 4013 | TweakTown.com
NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3090 Founders Edition Review: The Everything Killer 303 | TweakTown.com

Metro Exodus is one of the hardest tests that our graphics cards have to go through, with 4A Games' latest creation being one of the best looking games on the market. It is a serious test that pushes GPUs to their limits, and also features RTX technologies like DLSS.

NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3090 Founders Edition Review: The Everything Killer 97 | TweakTown.com
NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3090 Founders Edition Review: The Everything Killer 4015 | TweakTown.com
NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3090 Founders Edition Review: The Everything Killer 306 | TweakTown.com

Far Cry New Dawn was developed by Ubisoft, and is powered the Dunia Engine, an engine that has been modified over the years for Far Cry and last used in Far Cry 5. Dunia Engine itself was a modified version of CRYENGINE, scaling incredibly well on all sorts of hardware.

NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3090 Founders Edition Review: The Everything Killer 20 | TweakTown.com
NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3090 Founders Edition Review: The Everything Killer 4002 | TweakTown.com
NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3090 Founders Edition Review: The Everything Killer 302 | TweakTown.comNVIDIA GeForce RTX 3090 Founders Edition Review: The Everything Killer 301 | TweakTown.com

Shadow of the Tomb Raider is one of the latest games to join our graphics card benchmark lineup, with the game built using the Foundation engine as a base, the same engine in Rise of the Tomb Raider. Eidos Montreal R&D department made lots of changes to the engine during the development of Shadow of the Tomb Raider to make it one of the best-looking games out right now.

NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3090 Founders Edition Review: The Everything Killer 144 | TweakTown.com

1080p Benchmark Performance Thoughts

Please, please do not buy the GeForce RTX 3090 for 1080p gaming... it is so, so beyond overkill for 1080p gaming. Even 1440p gaming isn't really where the RTX 3090 is aiming for, it's more for 4K gaming -- and even 8K gaming finally.

Still, we're looking at 250FPS in DOOM Eternal on maxed out Ultra Nightmare settings (!!!) -- 12FPS above the RTX 3080 FE. We have 5FPS more with Red Dead Redemption 2 over the RTX 3080 FE at 1080p, virtually identical results in Shadow of the Tomb Raider and 15FPS more in Metro Exodus (104FPS vs 89FPS) than the RTX 3080 FE.

Benchmarks - 1440p

NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3090 Founders Edition Review: The Everything Killer 4017 | TweakTown.com
NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3090 Founders Edition Review: The Everything Killer 307 | TweakTown.comNVIDIA GeForce RTX 3090 Founders Edition Review: The Everything Killer 308 | TweakTown.com

DOOM Eternal is one of the best-looking, but superbly-optimized games of 2020 with the folks at id Software truly putting their all into the id Tech 7 engine for DOOM Eternal. We're using the Vulkan API on DOOM Eternal here.

You can buy DOOM Eternal at Amazon.

NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3090 Founders Edition Review: The Everything Killer 188 | TweakTown.com
NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3090 Founders Edition Review: The Everything Killer 4016 | TweakTown.com

Another new entry into our regular graphics card benchmarks is Red Dead Redemption 2, which is powered by the RAGE engine by Rockstar Games. The RAGE engine has been tuned from its normal use in the Grand Theft Auto series. We're also running this on the Vulkan API.

You can buy Red Dead Redemption 2 at Amazon.

NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3090 Founders Edition Review: The Everything Killer 22 | TweakTown.com
NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3090 Founders Edition Review: The Everything Killer 4006 | TweakTown.com
NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3090 Founders Edition Review: The Everything Killer 304 | TweakTown.comNVIDIA GeForce RTX 3090 Founders Edition Review: The Everything Killer 305 | TweakTown.com

Middle-earth: Shadow of War is a sequel to the popular Shadow of Mordor, which was powered by the Lithtech engine. When cranked up to maximum detail, it will chew through your GPU and its VRAM like it's nothing.

You can buy Middle-earth: Shadow of War at Amazon.

NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3090 Founders Edition Review: The Everything Killer 16 | TweakTown.com
NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3090 Founders Edition Review: The Everything Killer 4013 | TweakTown.com
NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3090 Founders Edition Review: The Everything Killer 303 | TweakTown.com

Metro Exodus is one of the hardest tests that our graphics cards have to go through, with 4A Games' latest creation being one of the best looking games on the market. It is a serious test that pushes GPUs to their limits, and also features RTX technologies like DLSS.

NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3090 Founders Edition Review: The Everything Killer 98 | TweakTown.com
NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3090 Founders Edition Review: The Everything Killer 4015 | TweakTown.com
NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3090 Founders Edition Review: The Everything Killer 306 | TweakTown.com

Far Cry New Dawn was developed by Ubisoft, and is powered the Dunia Engine, an engine that has been modified over the years for Far Cry and last used in Far Cry 5. Dunia Engine itself was a modified version of CRYENGINE, scaling incredibly well on all sorts of hardware.

NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3090 Founders Edition Review: The Everything Killer 19 | TweakTown.com
NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3090 Founders Edition Review: The Everything Killer 4002 | TweakTown.com
NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3090 Founders Edition Review: The Everything Killer 302 | TweakTown.comNVIDIA GeForce RTX 3090 Founders Edition Review: The Everything Killer 301 | TweakTown.com

Shadow of the Tomb Raider is one of the latest games to join our graphics card benchmark lineup, with the game built using the Foundation engine as a base, the same engine in Rise of the Tomb Raider. Eidos Montreal R&D department made lots of changes to the engine during the development of Shadow of the Tomb Raider to make it one of the best-looking games out right now.

NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3090 Founders Edition Review: The Everything Killer 133 | TweakTown.com

1440p Benchmark Performance Thoughts

Once again, I do not recommend the GeForce RTX 3090 for 1440p gaming -- but you're still going to be enjoying over 230FPS in DOOM Eternal. Red Dead Redemption 2 pushes up into 110FPS on the RTX 3090 FE compared to 102FPS on the RTX 3080 FE.

Shadow of War pumps along at 145FPS average on the RTX 3090 FE, while 14FPS faster than the RTX 3080 FE in Metro Exodus at 1440p.

Benchmarks - 4K

NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3090 Founders Edition Review: The Everything Killer 4017 | TweakTown.com
NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3090 Founders Edition Review: The Everything Killer 307 | TweakTown.comNVIDIA GeForce RTX 3090 Founders Edition Review: The Everything Killer 308 | TweakTown.com

DOOM Eternal is one of the best-looking, but superbly-optimized games of 2020 with the folks at id Software truly putting their all into the id Tech 7 engine for DOOM Eternal. We're using the Vulkan API on DOOM Eternal here.

You can buy DOOM Eternal at Amazon.

NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3090 Founders Edition Review: The Everything Killer 189 | TweakTown.com
NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3090 Founders Edition Review: The Everything Killer 4016 | TweakTown.com

Another new entry into our regular graphics card benchmarks is Red Dead Redemption 2, which is powered by the RAGE engine by Rockstar Games. The RAGE engine has been tuned from its normal use in the Grand Theft Auto series. We're also running this on the Vulkan API.

You can buy Red Dead Redemption 2 at Amazon.

NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3090 Founders Edition Review: The Everything Killer 21 | TweakTown.com
NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3090 Founders Edition Review: The Everything Killer 4006 | TweakTown.com
NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3090 Founders Edition Review: The Everything Killer 304 | TweakTown.comNVIDIA GeForce RTX 3090 Founders Edition Review: The Everything Killer 305 | TweakTown.com

Middle-earth: Shadow of War is a sequel to the popular Shadow of Mordor, which was powered by the Lithtech engine. When cranked up to maximum detail, it will chew through your GPU and its VRAM like it's nothing.

You can buy Middle-earth: Shadow of War at Amazon.

NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3090 Founders Edition Review: The Everything Killer 15 | TweakTown.com
NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3090 Founders Edition Review: The Everything Killer 4013 | TweakTown.com
NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3090 Founders Edition Review: The Everything Killer 303 | TweakTown.com

Metro Exodus is one of the hardest tests that our graphics cards have to go through, with 4A Games' latest creation being one of the best looking games on the market. It is a serious test that pushes GPUs to their limits, and also features RTX technologies like DLSS.

NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3090 Founders Edition Review: The Everything Killer 99 | TweakTown.com
NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3090 Founders Edition Review: The Everything Killer 4015 | TweakTown.com
NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3090 Founders Edition Review: The Everything Killer 306 | TweakTown.com

Far Cry New Dawn was developed by Ubisoft, and is powered the Dunia Engine, an engine that has been modified over the years for Far Cry and last used in Far Cry 5. Dunia Engine itself was a modified version of CRYENGINE, scaling incredibly well on all sorts of hardware.

NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3090 Founders Edition Review: The Everything Killer 18 | TweakTown.com
NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3090 Founders Edition Review: The Everything Killer 4002 | TweakTown.com
NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3090 Founders Edition Review: The Everything Killer 302 | TweakTown.comNVIDIA GeForce RTX 3090 Founders Edition Review: The Everything Killer 301 | TweakTown.com

Shadow of the Tomb Raider is one of the latest games to join our graphics card benchmark lineup, with the game built using the Foundation engine as a base, the same engine in Rise of the Tomb Raider. Eidos Montreal R&D department made lots of changes to the engine during the development of Shadow of the Tomb Raider to make it one of the best-looking games out right now.

NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3090 Founders Edition Review: The Everything Killer 122 | TweakTown.com

4K Benchmark Performance Thoughts

Alright, we're at the interesting part of the GeForce RTX 3090 performance: 4K gaming.

If you have a high-end 4K 144Hz gaming monitor then the GeForce RTX 3090 will provide you with enough horsepower to drive 144FPS average in DOOM Eternal maxed out at 4K. This is up from the 137FPS on the RTX 3080 FE and up a huge 40FPS from the TITAN RTX.

We have 6FPS more at 4K on the RTX 3090 FE in RDR2 compared to the RTX 3080 FE with 76FPS average versus 70FPS, while it leaves the TITAN RTX in its dust with 57FPS versus 76FPS. Shadow of War loves the higher-end RTX 3090, pushing 114FPS average compared to 90FPS on the TITAN RTX.

Shadow of the Tomb Raider screams along at 112FPS average at 4K, which is ever-so-close to 4K 120FPS perfection. Metro Exodus pushes past 60FPS average 4K on the new RTX 3090 FE, which is impressive to see over the 46FPS on the TITAN RTX.

RTX 3090 FE > TITAN RTX:

  • Shadow of the Tomb Raider: 36% faster
  • DOOM Eternal: 50% faster
  • Red Dead Redemption 2: 33% faster
  • Shadow of War: 27% faster
  • Metro Exodus: 37% faster

RTX 3090 FE > RTX 3080 FE:

  • Shadow of the Tomb Raider: 14% faster
  • DOOM Eternal: 14% faster
  • Red Dead Redemption 2: 8% faster
  • Shadow of War: 8% faster
  • Metro Exodus: 17% faster

Benchmarks - 8K

8K might sound like just 'double 4K' but it really isn't -- it is quad 4K, you would need 4 x 4K monitors stacked 2-by-2 in order to have the same pixel count as an 8K monitor or TV.

NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3090 Founders Edition Review: The Everything Killer 704 | TweakTown.com

We're using the Dell UP3218K monitor, which is a native 8K monitor outputting 7680 x 4320 at 60Hz. The monitor uses 2 x DisplayPort cables to do it, but I will note that NVIDIA's new GeForce RTX 30 series graphics cards all support HDMI 2.1.

HDMI 2.1 is capable of delivering either 4K 120Hz or 8K 60Hz through a single HDMI 2.1 cable, which is what all of the new 8K TVs hitting the market will be using.

NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3090 Founders Edition Review: The Everything Killer 4017 | TweakTown.com
NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3090 Founders Edition Review: The Everything Killer 31 | TweakTown.com
NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3090 Founders Edition Review: The Everything Killer 4018 | TweakTown.com
NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3090 Founders Edition Review: The Everything Killer 821 | TweakTown.com
NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3090 Founders Edition Review: The Everything Killer 4019 | TweakTown.com
NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3090 Founders Edition Review: The Everything Killer 824 | TweakTown.com
NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3090 Founders Edition Review: The Everything Killer 4016 | TweakTown.com
NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3090 Founders Edition Review: The Everything Killer 34 | TweakTown.com
NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3090 Founders Edition Review: The Everything Killer 4006 | TweakTown.com
NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3090 Founders Edition Review: The Everything Killer 33 | TweakTown.com
NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3090 Founders Edition Review: The Everything Killer 4013 | TweakTown.com
NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3090 Founders Edition Review: The Everything Killer 823 | TweakTown.com
NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3090 Founders Edition Review: The Everything Killer 4002 | TweakTown.com
NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3090 Founders Edition Review: The Everything Killer 32 | TweakTown.com

8K Benchmark Performance Thoughts

This is why we're here: 8K gaming.

7680 x 4320 isn't easy... 4x the pixels of 4K, 16x the pixels of 1080p -- it chews through VRAM like it's nothing. You will need 16GB or more VRAM to drive 8K in some games (Control, Death Stranding, Wolfenstein: Youngblood, and others) which is where the huge 24GB framebuffer of the RTX 3080 FE and TITAN RTX come into play.

NVIDIA's new GeForce RTX 3090 Founders Edition carves through DOOM Eternal pumping out an astonishing 46FPS on the Nightmare graphics preset. The RTX 3090 rips and tears through DOOM Eternal harder than the RTX 3080 did... 46FPS average at 8K is bananas.

$1000 cheaper, 35% faster at 8K -- amazing.

Shadow of War at 8K on its maxed out graphics settings also has some great performance to stretch the legs of the GeForce RTX 3090, with 36FPS average -- up from the 30FPS on the RTX 3080 FE and just 24FPS on the TITAN RTX. This is a huge 50% increase in performance over the TITAN RTX.

But then you come to Control... and without any DLSS enabled (but RT fully cranked up) the GeForce RTX 3090 comes out swinging -- and while it might 'only' be 10FPS average, the only other card capable of running it at 8K + RT is the TITAN RTX (as you need 16GB+ of VRAM). The RTX 3090 FE is a game-changing 80% faster than the TITAN RTX in Control at 8K with ray tracing maxed out.

This is f***ing pure insanity, representing a I-had-to-double-check-my-numbers 80% increase in performance over the TITAN RTX that cost $2499.

RTX 3090 FE > TITAN RTX:

  • Control: 80% faster
  • Death Stranding: 46% faster
  • DOOM Eternal: 35% faster
  • Red Dead Redemption 2: 52% faster
  • Shadow of the Tomb Raider: 52% faster
  • Shadow of War: 50% faster
  • Metro Exodus: 40% faster

RTX 3090 FE > RTX 3080 FE:

  • Control: DNR on RTX 3080 FE
  • Death Stranding: 73% faster
  • DOOM Eternal: 77% faster
  • Red Dead Redemption 2: 16% faster
  • Shadow of the Tomb Raider: 60% faster
  • Shadow of War: 20% faster
  • Metro Exodus: 12% faster

Benchmarks - RTX + DLSS

I've now got an entire section dedicated to ray tracing and DLSS benchmarks, where I'll slowly benchmark more and more titles and add them into future reviews. I've now introduced Control, Death Stranding, and Wolfenstein: Youngblood into my testing routine for RTX + DLSS benchmarks.

Control

NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3090 Founders Edition Review: The Everything Killer 4018 | TweakTown.com
NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3090 Founders Edition Review: The Everything Killer 822 | TweakTown.com
  • Control RT + DLSS performance: NVIDIA wasn't joking around when it said the GeForce RTX 3090 was an 8K 60FPS gaming beast -- with both RT and DLSS enabled (rendering @ 1440p outputting to 8K and Ultra graphics enabled) we're looking at 55FPS average. A few detail adjustments and you can average 8K 60FPS without an issue on the RTX 3090.

Death Stranding

NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3090 Founders Edition Review: The Everything Killer 4019 | TweakTown.com
NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3090 Founders Edition Review: The Everything Killer 825 | TweakTown.com
  • Death Stranding + DLSS performance: Seriously, look at this -- Death Stranding hits a huge 90FPS average with the DLSS "ultra performance" mode on the GeForce RTX 3090 FE. Blows the RTX 3080 FE and its 76FPS away, and is a huge upgrade from the 64FPS average on the TITAN RTX.

Metro Exodus

NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3090 Founders Edition Review: The Everything Killer 309 | TweakTown.com
NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3090 Founders Edition Review: The Everything Killer 811 | TweakTown.com
NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3090 Founders Edition Review: The Everything Killer 812 | TweakTown.com
NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3090 Founders Edition Review: The Everything Killer 813 | TweakTown.com
  • Metro Exodus RT + DLSS performance: NVIDIA's monster new GeForce RTX 3090 offers enough power that you can run Metro Exodus with all dials turned to maximum at 4K with ray tracing enabled (and with the help of DLSS magic) hit 60FPS average. Wowzers.

Shadow of the Tomb Raider

NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3090 Founders Edition Review: The Everything Killer 310 | TweakTown.com
NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3090 Founders Edition Review: The Everything Killer 804 | TweakTown.com
NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3090 Founders Edition Review: The Everything Killer 805 | TweakTown.com
NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3090 Founders Edition Review: The Everything Killer 806 | TweakTown.com
  • Shadow of the Tomb Raider RT + DLSS performance: Shadow of the Tomb Raider is one of those games that DLSS just super-charges and we end up with a gigantic 112FPS average at 4K with the new GeForce RTX 3090 FE with RT + DLSS enabled.

Overclocking

There's actually a good amount of wiggle room in NVIDIA's new GeForce RTX 3090 Founders Edition graphics card for some overclocking fun. The first thing I did was max out the power and fans to keep the card with as much juice as it can use, and as cool as it can be.

Here's where I landed with my RTX 3090 FE sample:

NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3090 Founders Edition Review: The Everything Killer 703 | TweakTown.com

+115MHz on the GPU

+699MHz (or so) on the VRAM

NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3090 Founders Edition Review: The Everything Killer 702 | TweakTown.com

Here we're looking at the card sitting pretty at around 2010MHz, but it was hovering up to 2040MHz for the most part -- spiking at 2085MHz or so. I've got the card running with the fans at 100% and we have GPU temps of just 56C -- while the board power draw hits 390W or so, and the GPU on its own with 210W or so.

NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3090 Founders Edition Review: The Everything Killer 701 | TweakTown.com

With the 700MHz overclock on the already fast GDDR6X memory at 19.5Gbps we have a huge 21Gbps that provides a huge 1TB/sec of memory bandwidth. We're talking HBM2 numbers of bandwidth here, something offered with AMD's Vega-based Radeon VII graphics card.

Overclocked Benchmarks

I had 115MHz on top of the boost GPU clock on the RTX 3090 FE, with the 24GB of ultra-fast GDDR6X overclocked by another 700MHz. After that, I ran some benchmarks again to see what type of improvement we'll see.

NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3090 Founders Edition Review: The Everything Killer 124 | TweakTown.com
NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3090 Founders Edition Review: The Everything Killer 125 | TweakTown.com

3DMark overclock: We are able to breach 20K in TimeSpy (1440p) with the overclock on the RTX 3090 FE, while breaking through 10K at stock we get close to 11K with the RTX 3090 FE overclocked.

NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3090 Founders Edition Review: The Everything Killer 127 | TweakTown.com
NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3090 Founders Edition Review: The Everything Killer 126 | TweakTown.com

Metro Exodus overclock: We're seeing a decent uplift in performance with the overclock at 1440p in Metro Exodus, adding 5FPS more to hit 87FPS average. The overclock on the RTX 3090 FE sees us hitting that magic 4K 60FPS mark.

NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3090 Founders Edition Review: The Everything Killer 129 | TweakTown.com
NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3090 Founders Edition Review: The Everything Killer 128 | TweakTown.com

Shadow of War overclock: We have only 3FPS more in Shadow of War at 1440p with the overclocked RTX 3090 FE, but we get to the even more magical 4K 120FPS average with the tweaked RTX 3090 FE graphics card.

Power Consumption & Temps

NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3090 Founders Edition Review: The Everything Killer 222 | TweakTown.com

NVIDIA wasn't bragging about the cooler for its GeForce RTX 3090 Founders Edition, where under load we're looking at just 67C -- compared to the 79C out of the GeForce RTX 3080 Founders Edition graphics card. The RTX 3090 FE also runs incredibly quiet, too.

NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3090 Founders Edition Review: The Everything Killer 333 | TweakTown.com

Power consumption numbers are pretty high, but you knew this coming into the review -- and the purchase if you are about to buy one (or read this review after it's published). Out of the box the RTX 3090 FE will chew up 330-350W on its own, with my full Intel Core i7-8700K test bed consuming 430W under load.

But when the GeForce RTX 3090 Founders Edition is overclocked, I was hitting 520W full system draw while the RTX 3090 was using 400W on its own.

What's Hot, What's Not

What's Hot

NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3090 Founders Edition Review: The Everything Killer 531 | TweakTown.com
  • Totally unrivaled performance: Nothing comes close to the NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3090 and its raw performance, nor does anything come close to its huge 28 billion transistors and 24GB of ultra-fast GDDR6X memory. It's a beast in every sense of the word.
  • 8K 60FPS gaming is now a reality: We were getting close with RTX 2080 Ti or TITAN RTX in NVLink, but you know what SLI/NVLink is like with scaling in most games. A single ridiculously fast card is better, and now we have that with the new GeForce RTX 3090.
  • DLSS ultra performance mode = magic: Not only is it an 8K gaming beast, but when you add in the new DLSS "ultra performance" modes in some games (Wolfenstein, Control, Death Stranding) then you're guaranteed 8K 60FPS on the GeForce RTX 3090. Unbelievable stuff.
NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3090 Founders Edition Review: The Everything Killer 506 | TweakTown.com
  • 4K 120FPS beast: If you want unrivaled performance, the RTX 3090 is for you -- especially if you've got a nice new monster 4K 120Hz monitor or TV. You can play gorgeous games like Shadow of the Tomb Raider maxed out at 4K 120FPS -- the TITAN RTX in comparison is only capable of 82FPS.
  • Custom cards available unlike TITAN RTX: Unlike the TITAN RTX that was made in Founders Edition only form, NVIDIA's new GeForce RTX 3090 is a proper GeForce RTX card -- so we have custom models on day one which is a huge deal. We get some varieties in style with identical, or even more performance.
  • 24GB ultra-fast GDDR6X at up to 1TB/sec: You have 936GB/sec of memory bandwidth out of the box, but a quick overclock past 1TB/sec is easy. This is a major driving force behind the 8K domination against the RTX 3080 and TITAN RTX. The TITAN RTX has 24GB of VRAM too, but the bandwidth leap on the RTX 3090 is nuts.
NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3090 Founders Edition Review: The Everything Killer 520 | TweakTown.com
  • It is SO huge: We've all seen the pictures on the internet, but man -- it's only once you take the RTX 3090 FE out of the box and have it in your hands that you realize how unapologetically large it is, and I love it. It's huge, but it's dead quiet and offers bonkers levels of performance.
  • But yet so quiet: The thermal performance on the GeForce RTX 3090 Founders Edition graphics card is so impressive, I thought something was wrong. I had to get up really close to the card to even hear it, as I didn't truly believe NVIDIA's marketing on how good the cooling was. Yeah, I was wrong -- NVIDIA was right. RTX 3090 FE is truly whisper quiet.
  • Perfect for professionals by day, gamers by night: If you are a professional that has software that can squeeze every drop out of the GeForce RTX 3090 and its 24GB of VRAM then this is the card for you. But unlike a Quadro RTX, you're going to have the best gaming performance on Earth right now with the RTX 3090 for your gaming after work.

What's Not

You know what, there's nothing wrong with the GeForce RTX 3090 apart from the price.

No normal gamer is going to buy the GeForce RTX 3090, but if you're someone (like me) who wants the very best, and you can afford it (you're not going to be interested in the RTX 3090 seriously unless you are actually in the market for it) then it is a must, must buy.

NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3090 Founders Edition Review: The Everything Killer 502 | TweakTown.com

It blows away the GeForce RTX 2080 Ti and TITAN RTX, reducing them to dust -- and enables true 4K and actual 8K gaming thanks to its immense speed and huge 24GB ultra-fast GDDR6X memory.

You could maybe knock the 500W+ power it can consume under the right loads, but when you're getting this much performance out of it you don't care. If we're talking Vega levels of power consumption, heat, and that lackluster performance -- that's inefficiency, but the word "lackluster" or "subpar" or "inefficiency" are not a Kryptonite to the GeForce RTX 3090.

Nothing is.

Final Thoughts

NVIDIA has achieved something remarkable with its GeForce RTX 3090: it has ushered in 8K 60FPS gaming.

NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3090 Founders Edition Review: The Everything Killer 527 | TweakTown.com

No matter how insane 8K gaming is, no matter how far away it is, or how expensive it is, or how only maybe 50 people across the world will actually buy a huge 8K TV and decked out $10,000 gaming PC with a GeForce RTX 3090 graphics card inside.

None of that is the point of the GeForce RTX 3090.

NVIDIA said so themselves, with CEO and founder of NVIDIA Jensen Huang saying the GeForce RTX 3090 is a BFGPU -- Big Ferocious GPU. We all know Jensen had a twinkle in his eye (or maybe his leather jacket) when he said that because we all know he wanted to say the GeForce RTX 3090 is a Big F***ing GPU -- because that's what it is.

NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3090 Founders Edition Review: The Everything Killer 519 | TweakTown.com

This is what I loved about the GeForce RTX 3090: it is unapologetically fast.

There are no compromises here, it is a huge triple-slot beast that is one of the coolest-running graphics cards I've ever used, and by far the coolest-operating reference or Founders Edition card NVIDIA has ever released.

I have owned an 8K monitor for nearly 5 years now and have been testing every big graphics card release waiting for when I could actually play games at 8K 60FPS. I tried with the GeForce RTX 2080 Ti, not good enough -- what about RTX 2080 Ti in NVLink -- closer, but you're locked to games that support SLI.

NVIDIA's huge $2499 graphics card in the TITAN RTX wasn't enough, but it was much better -- mostly thanks to its huge 24GB framebuffer. If you need to see how powerful that 24GB of GDDR6X and GA102 GPU are in professional work loads, my good friend Keith at Wccftech has those results for you.

But this is where NVIDIA really dials things to 11 -- or is that 21 -- with the GeForce RTX 3090.

The simply crazy 28 billion transistors inside of the GA102 GPU, the huge 24GB of ultra-fast (and overclockable) GDDR6X memory infuse to combine what is the most powerful graphics card on the planet.

NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3090 Founders Edition Review: The Everything Killer 31 | TweakTown.com

You might not be able to afford it, you might never buy it -- but if you've got the money and want the very best there is, there is no question on whether you'll buy the GeForce RTX 3090. This review is just underlining how f***ing incredible it is.

From the moment you have the RTX 3090 Founders Edition in your hands, to when it's installed into your machine with its huge triple-slot design... you are in love.

If you are looking to buy a huge new BFGD (Big Format Gaming Display) or any one of LG's kick ass 4K 120Hz capable OLED gaming TVs then you will want to pair it with the GeForce RTX 3090 Founders Edition. Personally, I have just reached my 10 year milestone of working for TweakTown last month.

NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3090 Founders Edition Review: The Everything Killer 508 | TweakTown.com

I decided to spoil myself and get something so crazy for myself as a present, so I got the LG CX series 77-inch 4K 120Hz OLED. It has HDMI 2.1 connectivity which will connect right into the RTX 3090, and offer me almost IMAX style gaming in my living room.

If you've got a setup like this, or were in the process of doing so -- you would have clicked on that 'buy' button before you even read this review. All I've done is provide you with a gigantic list of benchmarks with games, games with RTX and DLSS, and right up into 8K.

This is the most powerful graphics card ever made, and it is an uncompromising BFGPU... Jensen was right all along.

Your move, AMD.

Performance

100%

Quality

100%

Features

100%

Value

100%

Overall

100%

The Bottom Line

NVIDIA's new GeForce RTX 3090 Founders Edition is truly a BFGPU. Uncompromising performance, unparalleled cooling, crazy huge 24GB framebuffer. Achievement Unlocked: 8K 60FPS gaming.

TweakTown award
100%

Sabrent Rocket Q 8TB NVMe PCIe M.2 2280 Internal SSD

TodayYesterday7 days ago30 days ago
$1299.99$1399.99$1399.99
* Prices last scanned on 12/4/2020 at 3:59 pm CST - prices may not be accurate, click links above for the latest price. We may earn an affiliate commission.

Anthony is a long time PC enthusiast with a passion of hate for games built around consoles. FPS gaming since the pre-Quake days, where you were insulted if you used a mouse to aim, he has been addicted to gaming and hardware ever since. Working in IT retail for 10 years gave him great experience with custom-built PCs. His addiction to GPU tech is unwavering.

Newsletter Subscription
We openly invite the companies who provide us with review samples / who are mentioned or discussed to express their opinion. If any company representative wishes to respond, we will publish the response here. Please contact us if you wish to respond.

Related Tags

Newsletter Subscription
Latest News
View More News
Latest Reviews
View More Reviews
Latest Articles
View More Articles