...for users who sat out the previous crop of cards, Nvidia's latest £649 GPU represents a monumental upgrade.
RTX 3080 is here and with it arrives a new era of smooth 4K UHD gaming with second-generation raytracing in tow. Performance is every bit as impressive as we'd hoped, and for users who sat out the previous crop of cards, Nvidia's latest £649 GPU represents a monumental upgrade.
The question of sheer speed has been answered emphatically, yet it is a sign of the times that other important considerations remain. How will AMD's Radeon 6000 Series compare? Where are the must-have games? Will next week's premium RTX 3090 completely blow the RTX 3080 out the water? And in the midst of a global pandemic, who could blame users for adopting a wait-and-see strategy.
Interesting times indeed, and there's another hurdle facing Nvidia's legion of add-in-board partners. With the standard Founders Edition improving with each generation, there's less scope for dearer custom-cooled derivatives. Nvidia's board still isn't perfect, yet it ticks enough of the right boxes to be the go-to choice at £649. Partner cards will feel the squeeze, and we're of the opinion that any RTX 3080, irrespective of overclock or cooling, should attach no more than a 10 per cent premium. £699, ideally, ought to be the absolute limit.
That very dilemma puts the £760 Gaming X Trio in a tight spot. Such a premium is tough to justify in the face of the more affordable Founders Edition, but that's the price you pay for what is one of the fastest and quietest RTX 3080s around.
Excellent at QHD and 4K UHD
Faster, cooler and quieter than Founders
Fans switch off at low load
Solid build quality
Requires three power connectors
Not a great deal of overclocking potential
Significant premium over Founders Edition
MSI GeForce RTX 3080 Gaming X Trio
The MSI GeForce RTX 3080 Gaming X Trio is available to purchase from Scan Computers.
At HEXUS, we invite the companies whose products we test to comment on our articles. If any company representatives for the products reviewed choose to respond, we'll publish their commentary here verbatim.
*UK-based HEXUS community members are eligible for free delivery and priority customer service through the SCAN.care@HEXUS forum.