Nvidia caught with its pants down, will ‘unlaunch’ the 12GB RTX 4080

There’s been plenty of controversy surrounding the recently revealed Nvidia GeForce RTX 4080 12GB version, and it seems that the company has finally caved into the proverbial pressure and made an unexpected decision.

Nvidia announced that it would be ‘unlaunching’ the 12GB RTX 4080. According to the official post, the reason for the ‘unlaunching’ is that “the RTX 4080 12GB is a fantastic graphics card, but it’s not named right. Having two GPUs with the 4080 designation is confusing.”

The 16GB version of the graphics card is still gearing for a November 16th release, however, with the announcement stating that it’s “amazing and on track to delight gamers everywhere.”

What happened with the RTX 4080 12GB? 

There was much controversy surrounding the the 12GB RTX 4080 and its specs, especially considering the hefty starting price tag of $899. When compared to the 16GB version, we even found that the graphics cards used two different chips: the 16GB has the AD103 GPU chip while the 12GB uses the AD104 chip.

Not only that but the 4080 has 2,048 fewer CUDA cores, less cache memory, and a smaller bus width. Though we don’t have the card to test right now, this would most likely result in a performance difference of 20-25% between the 12GB and 16GB versions. That is a huge difference for models with the same 4080 branding. And there have been leaked benchmarks as well from Overclock3D which support that proposed performance difference. 

This led to many believing the 12GB 4080 to be a 4070 in disguise, with an overinflated price point. Judging from both the lackluster performance and the fact that Nvidia delayed its launch with a rebranding on the horizon, there is plenty of credit to that theory. Hopefully, a mistake of this magnitude won’t be happening again.

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