For those new to desktop gaming graphics cards and why we want them, these latest options enable extremely high graphics settings in our Gaming PC. The hardware is large and powerful, but the appeal of RTX 40 series Graphics Cards is also about some key software & features named NVIDIA DLSS 3, Optical Multi Frame Generation, Super Resolution, and NVIDIA Reflex, which all come together to multiply performance with great image quality and responsiveness.
The NVIDIA RTX 4080 Graphics Card is the second 40 Series GPU to release, and thankfully we now better understand just how much bigger these graphics cards are - or more accurately - just how much more space is needed with the included power cable adaptors attached as these push out the dimensions of which chassis they can fit inside beyond what the dimensions of the graphics card specifications state, with a + 3.5cm in width clearance needed to fit the new power adaptor comfortably.
Fortunately most chassis do have a specification for CPU clearance which is usually used to calculate the max height of a CPU cooler fit, but this can be used to cross-check cases for RTX 4080 fitting too!
Using the new Gigabyte RTX 4080 Gaming OC Graphics Card as an example we have a width dimension of 150mm, so we + 35mm for a total of 185mm, then crosscheck this against the CPU clearance on the chassis we're looking to put it into, so something like an NZXT H7 Case is a nice fit. If you're feeling game enough, it is possible to bend the adaptor and squeeze it into clearance as low as 166mm, but it is not a nice fit pressing hard against the side panel.
Fitting aside, all the new models share key specifications around outputs and memory but the cooler designs vary greatly between brands so let's take a look at some of the hottest new RTX 4080 Graphics Cards available for gamers & content creators in New Zealand.
- RTX 4080 Graphics Card
- 16GB of GDDR6X
- PCIe 4.0
- HDMI 2.1 + DisplayPort 1.4a Outputs
- Max Resolution 7680x4320
- Up to 3.65 slot height
- 12+4 Power Input with 3x 8-Pin Adaptor Included (ASUS ROG + AORUS MASTER may include a 4x adaptor in box, we are checking)
The Gigabyte AERO OC RTX 4080 Graphics Card is an all-new design that's looking utterly glorious in white with a backplate that's metallic silver. Subtle detailing includes the "creativity starts here" messaging which is also found on the matching motherboard series. An AERO logo on the front-facing side of the graphics cards adds a little RGB fusion to the holographic blue-to-pink gradient, this is complemented by the exposed copper heat pipes connecting the direct contact vapour chamber to the large heatsink fins. The 110mm fan design is the excellent WindForce 3X system often seen in Gigabyte's popular Gaming OC Graphics Card models, and this AERO also features the alt-spinning central fan to reduce the turbulence of adjacent fans and increase airflow pressure.
Another new arrival from Gigabyte is the EAGLE RTX 4080 Graphics Card, this one is darker with a large front-facing GIGABYTE logo and underlining LED lightbar that can be controlled with RGB fusion software. Both the backplate and top of the graphics card are detailed with patterns and symbols which look a bit alien, with a very unique sphere logo in the centre fan. Much like the recently released 4090 models the heatsink extends well past the PCB and there is a large cut in the metal backplate so air can pass right through, aiding the heat dissipation.
In addition to these new-look designs from Gigabyte are RTX 4080 versions of AORUS MASTER (which is still the biggest), as well as their top-selling Gaming OC will be available on day one, with very limited RTX 4080 WaterForce series graphics cards with built-in 360mm water cooling coming later.
For day one ASUS have two TUF Gaming models releasing, these look very similar to the just-released 4090 but measure in slightly smaller. The RTX 4080 ROG STRIX OC however is just as large as the RTX 4090 counterpart.
Looking closer at the ROG STRIX RTX 4080 graphics card we enjoy the same colourful cooler design but the power requirements relax a bit, dropping down to 750 watts recommended. The large size of the ROG STRIX graphics card cooling system gives it advantages in thermals as well as low noise output. The RGB lighting effects on this graphics card cooler are particularly unique with the end cap and all can be customised to suit using ASUS AURA software, although it's important to note that the fan side of the card has a lot of blue and red colour in the ROG EYE logo which cannot be customised, only really an issue for those planning a horizontal mount.