ASUS TUF Gaming NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3080 OC Review

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Introduction

The ASUS TUF Gaming NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3080 OC is a valuable addition to the ASUS TUF gaming brand that transforms gaming to the next level. Once, this brand was not gaming-centric and was known to produce parts like highly durable motherboards. After switching to a gaming brand, RTX 3080 is the biggest bet by the company, and, currently, this is one of the best RTX 3080 Cards for gaming and mining.

In the beginning, the TUF graphics card were mostly mainstream GPUs, but with AUS TUF Gaming 3080, the brand becomes able to compare NVIDIA GeForce 3080 flagship-level graphics cards. ASUS included itself in the power race of GPUs and established it as a renowned brand of graphics cards depicting sophisticated engineering.

If you are an avid gamer or follow the gaming news, you may be familiar with the RTX hype back in 2018. The RTX combines the lighting, reflections, shadows, and global illumination with the conventional scenes based on raster 3D to improve the actuality of gaming. NVIDIA has introduced the advanced Raytracing in RTX 3080 that is the next-generation version of RTX.

The raytracing in the NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3080 is the second generation of 2018 RTX known as Ampere graphics architecture. This is the next-level technology that is even more performance-oriented than the RTX effects. NVIDIA has utilized two years to develop this fantastic raytracing that guarantees a stealer performance in all AAA titles. It can run at 60 Hz and 4k UHD with raytracing. However, for getting higher refresh rates, lowering the resolution results in better performance.

ASUS TUF Gaming NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3080 OC

ASUS TUF Gaming NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3080 OC

Muhammad Kashif

Design
Price
Features

Summary

ASUS TUF Gaming NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3080 OC is a better version of RTX 3080 Founders Edition at the cost of few more bucks. It has impressive cooling with triple fans at the expense of larger card size and smaller performance boost.

4.7

Specifications

ManufacturerASUS
ModelTUF Gaming GeForce RTX 3080
GPUGA102
GPU Memory Size10GB
GPU Memory TypeGDDR6X
Clock Rate1440 MHz
Boost Clock Rate1785 MHz
Memory Interface320-bit
Memory Clocks1188 MHz
Shader Units8704
Power connector2 x 8-pin
Recommended PSU850W
Display outputs2 HDMI 2.1, 3 DisplayPort 1.4a, HDCP Support
Multi-Display CapabilityYes, 4
DirectX12
OpenGLOpenGL 4.6

ASUS GeForce 3080 supports a new generation CUDA core that has more performance and double throughput. Its double CUDA cores count than its previous generation causes more improvements in the overall performance. It has unmatched performance with over 68 RT core, 8704 CUDA cores, 96 ROPs, and 272 MTUs.

The memory setup for the data compute has undergone an update and consists of 10 GB of memory. The GDDR6X latest memory runs on 19 Gbps. This frequency ensures maximum performance and an improvement over the previous generation.

ASUS TUF Gaming NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3080 OC cooling

The memory interface on ASUS TUF Gaming NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3080 OC runs on 320-bit memory. It is a wide memory interface that packs 70% performance improvements over the previous generation. The memory setup can work out to a staggering 760 GB/s bandwidth.

There are several promising specifications upgrade that we have seen in NVIDIA 3080 GPUs. The changes are primarily next generation, and you get the latest HDMI 2.1 support. In addition to this, PCI-Express 4.0 x 16 bus and DisplayPort 1.4a connectivity ensures next-generation bits. There is an upgrade AV1 video acceleration for better performance. The 8 nm FFN process in the NVIDIA shows a promising improvement and has a special design by Samsung.

A Closer Look

The TUF Gaming GeForce RTX 3080 OC keeps the appearance of the military-grade metal styling that is the trademark of the ASUS brand. The cooling system is thick and filled with solid pieces with many stacks of fin elements connected to three AXIAL-TECH fan units. On both the cooler hood and the backplate, the use of metal is over the top. The cooler is lengthier than the PCB that it is sitting on.

ASUS TUF Gaming NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3080 OC dimensions

NVIDIA’s 3080 Founders Edition uses Dual Axial Flow-Via cooling, just like NVIDIA did on their high-end card. Because of that, ASUS was able to employ the extra length of the cooler to vent the card’s heat through the back. ASUS increased the card’s GPU speed by providing factory-overclocked speeds of 1785 MHz GPU Boost. This card takes advantage of two regular 8-pin PCIe power connectors. However, Asus TUF Gaming NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3080 OC is almost identical to its reference model. The Foundation edition is better in specifications at some places, but TUF Gaming 3080 is impacting the markets.

My own opinion is that this is the most refined product to bear the TUF Gaming label by ASUS. TUF Gaming graphics cards of the previous generations have been thought to be inferior and compared with cheapness in the past. However, the brand has advanced much in recent years, and this particular card no longer has that negative connotation. It is some of their premium designs that readily measure up to it. Most of the glowing LEDs are not there, and the airflow goes via a flat metal cover, which lets as much of the heat sink remain exposed to a feasible level.

The card dimensions are not easily adjustable in a compact build. But who is going to use the TUF Gaming NVIDIA RTX 3080 in a small rig? The measurements of the card are 30 cm × 14.5 cm. Additional height is included in the last segment, adding to the element’s size without benefiting it. It utilizes a triple fan design that increases the length of the unit.

ASUS TUF Gaming NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3080 OC back plate

The display connectivity is not short of options and includes three DisplayPort 1.4 ports and two HDMI 2.1 ports. The USB-C ports that were a fantastic addition in the Founders Edition are not present in the TUF Gaming version. The USB-C ports were an impressive utility to use the VR Headsets with the graphics card. But from the user’s perspective and the feedback, it becomes clear that users didn’t like the feature on foundation addition.

To handle the higher refresh rates of 4K and 8K monitors, DisplayPort 1.4a includes Display Stream Compression (DSC) 1.2a. Thus features enable you to connect 4K monitors at 120 Hz refresh rate and 8K displays at 60 Hz rate. The Ampere drive can easily drive two 8K screens at 60 Hz frequency with just one cable for each display. This new HDMI 2.1 standard can raise the resolution of 4K with impressive HDR support and 8K without HDR to 4096×2304 and 8192×4320, respectively. It manages to quadruple the bandwidth (48Gbps) to handle those resolutions with just one cable. DSC- High Definition results in 4K240 and 8K120 resolution, which is suitable for gaming.

NVIDIA has introduced a new NVENC/NVDEC video engine. This engine tends to use resources wisely and be light on CPU usage to handle various video jobs with ease. What you’ll like about this update is adding support for AV1 decoding. Comparable to the results obtained with Turing, you may also decode VC1, VP8, VP9, H.264, H.265, and MPEG-2, natively, at up to [email protected] Turing is the same encoder as the one we observed, which can handle H.264, H.265, and lossless encoding up to 8K.

TUF Gaming RTX 3080 OC cards have a regular 8-pin PCIe power input located at the regular power input location. Still, the Founders Edition has a 12-pin connector and uses a total of 16 power connectors (8 + 8) compared to this card’s single 8-pin power input. This power supply setup rates for a maximum 375 W power delivery.

ASUS TUF Gaming NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3080 OC ports

The TUF chipset also includes a dual BIOS option, which ASUS includes. These options are according to the user’s needs and requirements. The “performance” BIOS is the default, whereas the “quiet” BIOS will use a smooth but more relaxed fan curve, lowering noise levels but raising the temperature significantly. However, the “performance” BIOS provides better overall performance. In addition, both BIOS contain an idle fan stop feature. Some users may prefer a silent experience with low noise, so they switch to quiet BIOS to get a balanced performance.

The TUF Gaming NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3080 does not support multi-GPU functionality that is commonly known as SLI. At the same time, RTX 3090 still supports SLI. They are both based on the GA102 GPU, which is why they are only part of the market segmentation. For the most part, multi-GPU support has fallen out of favor. Therefore it doesn’t pose a problem.

It is pretty simple to dismantle the RTX 3080 TUF Gaming OC. To remove the backplate, you will need to release a handful of screws. Afterward, you will need to turn the second set of screws before pulling out the cooling solution. When we remove the cooler and extract it, it is a smooth piece, with the PCB and a base plate still attached. A massive aluminum fin stack locates at the back of six 6mm copper heat pipes of good thickness, which all carry coolant away from the system.

Looking for more power? Check out Best RTX 3090 GPUs

The base plate on the ASUS TUF Gaming RTX 3080 is one of the more complicated gadgets. You will observe it to be different from others in this generation. The metal contact plate comes in contact with some of the VRM MOSFETs and the memory chips. Many of the plates have a connection to one another via a flat heat pipe. To dissipate the heat, three aluminum fin stacks are there to facilitate the process. Additionally, some flat surfaces use thermal pads to transfer part of the heat from the primary cooler to the surface.

The cooler’s extrusion clearly incorporates punching a hole through the backplate and allowing air to exhaust through like the Dual Axial Flow-Through Founders Edition cooler. The backplate contains metal construction which causes it to emit some heat and is therefore applied using thermal pads.

Overclocking

The ASUS TUF Gaming NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3080 OC overclocking produced similar results to the Foundation Edition overclock. However, there was still little room for improvement in terms of overclocking. When ‘gaming mode’ is selected (which is the default), the GPU’s default boost frequency is 1785MHz, which generally led to GPU clocked between 1800 and 1900 MHz in the most demanding testing and higher clock speeds in lighter tasks. After installing the Asus GPU Tweak II software, you will also receive access to the OC Mode, which clocks 1815MHz. At the same time, it unlocks Silent Mode that clocks at 1755MHz. With the help of this utility, you get the opportunity to perform a custom overclock.

We had to make some tweaks, but after some fiddling, we were able to set the GPU’s overclock to +115, the memory overclocks to +1498, and the GPU voltage to 100. Even though the GPU frequency has a set value to run at 115MHz higher, it was only running roughly 50MHz faster than in the normal Gaming Mode configuration.

A notable memory overclock is the same as in the previous result, which means it’s critical to keep an eye on performance at memory clock frequencies equal to or higher than the EDR threshold since memory subsystem unreliability can reduce performance at those settings.

In the long run, merely using the default OC Mode overclock and then applying a RAM overclock to 20-20.5 Gbps is probably the easiest way to approach overclocking. Because the final 3-5% performance increase is unlikely to be the difference between a robust gaming experience and a good gaming experience. You may either run at stock or do something with a higher boost but offers better overall performance.

Power and Temperature Testing

There is little difference in power usage between the ASUS RTX 3080 TUF Gaming and the reference design of the Founders Edition. It only consumes 3W more power in low-use conditions and a non-gaming environment. The recommended PSU for TUF Gaming 3080 is 700W.

Regarding power consumption, it is greater than the Founders Edition, but that is to be expected, as the TUF Gaming RTX 30380 is factory overclocked and gives better performance.  If we look at performance per watt, however, the TUF Gaming is marginally more economical than the Founders Edition. It produces more performance per watt than the reference.

Like the Founders Edition, the ASUS TUF Gaming 3080 OC features a fan stop, which helps keep the system sound levels low while the graphics card is not in use. The fans switch down entirely, so there is no fan noise when the card is in use.

While the performance BIOS has a design to offer gaming noise levels quite similar to those of the Founders Edition, it was pretty disheartening to find that the same wasn’t true for gaming performance. This is true, but you will achieve noticeably better temps. If the quiet BIOS is active, then noise levels are excellent, only coming in at 31 dBA. Additionally, the temperature settings are fine in that mode, too. In fact, at 71°C, the fans are already quite enough for the recommendation that they can play games even at this temperature.

Bottom Line

The ASUS TUF Gaming NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3080 OC is an impressive performer for fulfilling gaming needs, and it is more affordable than for both OC and non-OC editions. It has taken inspiration from NVIDIA’s RTX 3080 Founders Edition in many ways but remained in close range regarding the performance. It has only 75 MHz more clock speed than the reference and packs a 1.8% higher clock than the Founders Edition. If you are looking for an affordable graphics card that can fulfill your desire for flawless 4K gaming, then this GPU is your best bet

Reasons to Buy
  • 60 FPS gaming at higher resolution
  • Upgraded performance over 2080/2080 Ti cards
  • Excellent triple-fan cooling
  • A decent default clock boost out of the box
  • A good overclocking range with stability
  • Excellent noise control
Reasons to Avoid
  • It needs more rig space for card adjustment
  • Overclocking seems more technical due to power limit concerns
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