RTX 3070 vs RTX 2080 Ti - Is 3070 Really Better?

JT JT 16 November
RTX 3070 vs RTX 2080 Ti - Is 3070 Really Better?

The new RTX 3070 is apparently better than  a 2080 Ti, at least according to Nvidia. I’m going to put this claim to the  test by comparing both in games at 4K,   1440p, and 1080p as well as content creator  workloads to see what the differences are.

Spec Differences

RTX 3070 vs RTX 2080 Ti - Is 3070 Really Better?Let’s start with the spec differences, the 3070  has more CUDA cores, higher base and boost clock   speeds, but 3 gigabytes less memory, so it will  be interesting to see if that affects games at 4K.   The 3070 costs significantly less than the  2080 Ti, half as much if we go by Nvidia’s   $1000 USD MSRP, and even more if we work with the  $1200 or so that it was actually available for.

Test PC Setup

RTX 3070 vs RTX 2080 Ti - Is 3070 Really Better?This is the system that I’m using to test out both  graphics cards, it’s got an overclocked i9-10900K   at 5.2GHz with 32gb of DDR4-3200 CL14 memory in  dual channel.

 We’ll first dig into the gaming results,   then check out cost per frame, power draw,  and content creator workloads afterwards.

Game benchmarks

RTX 3070 vs RTX 2080 Ti - Is 3070 Really Better?Starting out with Microsoft Flight Simulator, the  2080 Ti was ahead of the 3070 at all resolutions,   though it’s not by much, just 3-4 frames on  average. This equates to the 2080 Ti being about   8% faster at 1440p, the second biggest change  at this resolution out of the 11 titles tested,   but realistically it’s not a huge  change at just 4 FPS difference. RTX 3070 vs RTX 2080 Ti - Is 3070 Really Better?Red Dead Redemption 2 was tested using the games  benchmark tool. This time the 3070 was ahead,   with a 4% lead at 1080p and 1440p, then 6% higher  at 4K, again not big differences, but that said,   this was the game that performed the best on  the 3070 out of the ones I’ve tested here. RTX 3070 vs RTX 2080 Ti - Is 3070 Really Better?Battlefield 5 was tested in campaign mode  by running through the same mission on both   graphics cards. The 2080 Ti was back in front  here, but like before not by a huge margin,   regardless, winnings winning,  and the 3070 was 6% slower at 4K.RTX 3070 vs RTX 2080 Ti - Is 3070 Really Better?Shadow of the Tomb Raider was tested  with the games built in benchmark.   Both graphics cards were able to surpass 60  FPS with the highest setting preset which is   a nice result, but the 2080 Ti was 6% faster  than the 3070 at 1440p and 8% faster at 4K. RTX 3070 vs RTX 2080 Ti - Is 3070 Really Better?For Control I’ll start with RTX  off results. There’s basically   no difference between the two at  4K, margin of error stuff really,   the differences were a little larger at the  lower resolutions, but like most other games,   not really the sort of stuff you’re going to  notice a whole lot while actually playing. RTX 3070 vs RTX 2080 Ti - Is 3070 Really Better?With RTX on and DLSS enabled the frame rates at  4K and 1440p increase a little with both cards,   and both GPUs also get closer together now with  close to no difference regardless of resolution,   the 2080 Ti was just one to two  frames ahead for the averages. RTX 3070 vs RTX 2080 Ti - Is 3070 Really Better?I’ve tested Metro Exodus with the game's  benchmark tool, and the differences here   were above average when compared to the other  games tested, but yet again the gap between   the two doesn’t appear that large, the 3070  was 8% slower at 4K and 7% slower at 1440p. RTX 3070 vs RTX 2080 Ti - Is 3070 Really Better?Things are even closer together  in death stranding, especially at   the higher resolutions where the 3070  was just 4% slower than the 2080 Ti. RTX 3070 vs RTX 2080 Ti - Is 3070 Really Better?The Witcher 3 had the biggest  difference out of all 11 titles tested,   but even so it doesn’t actually look that  much with it layed out here on the graph,   the 3070 doesn’t appear far behind and was  10% slower at 1440p, or 12% slower at 4K. RTX 3070 vs RTX 2080 Ti - Is 3070 Really Better?Assassin’s Creed Odyssey was tested with the built-in benchmark, the average frame rates are very   close together here. Interestingly the 1% low from  the 3070 is higher than the 2080 Ti. This was also   the case in The Witcher 3, though the difference  was much less pronounced than it was here.RTX 3070 vs RTX 2080 Ti - Is 3070 Really Better? Call of Duty Modern Warfare was  tested in campaign mode. There   were above average differences here with  the 3070 around 6% slower at 1440p and 4K.RTX 3070 vs RTX 2080 Ti - Is 3070 Really Better? Rainbow Six Siege was tested using the  games benchmark tool with Vulkan. This   was another game where there were basically  no differences of significance between them.

1080p Results

RTX 3070 vs RTX 2080 Ti - Is 3070 Really Better?At 1080p on average over all games tested  the 3070 was 3% slower than the 2080 Ti   in average FPS. Most games covered  were a little ahead on the 2080 Ti,   though in a lot of cases the difference was small.

1440p Results

RTX 3070 vs RTX 2080 Ti - Is 3070 Really Better?Stepping up to 1440p and the 2080  Ti now has a slightly larger lead,   with only Red Dead Redemption  2 doing better on the 3070,   again though, for the most part  the differences weren’t too large.

4K Results

RTX 3070 vs RTX 2080 Ti - Is 3070 Really Better?At 4K the 2080 Ti is a little further ahead now,   I wouldn’t be surprised if its extra  VRAM was helping out in some cases here,   even if it is slower than the 3070’s memory,  it’s still got more capacity which should have   an advantage at higher resolutions with higher  settings, but of course this is game dependent.

I guess to be fair to Nvidia, I am using an  Aorus 2080 Ti so it is clocked higher than stock,   meanwhile I’m using a founders edition 3070  as that’s just what I’ve got available.   A 3070 from a board partner like ASUS or  MSI or whoever is probably going to have   a slight overclock, so the differences  between the two might be a bit closer   together. With the 3070 slightly overclocked,  I could see the difference being much closer.

Cost Per Frame

It doesn’t matter much though as  the price difference is so large.   The 2080 Ti had an MSRP of $1000 USD, but  was generally only available for $1200.   I’ve decided to add both price points into  the cost per frame graph for argument’s sake,   though there’s not too much point as the 3070  is demolishing the 2080 Ti in terms of value.   This makes perfect sense, as we just saw the  3070 was only a little slower on average,   but it’s less than half the price, so  quite simply the value is just far better.

2nd Hand 2080 Ti?

You could of course look at buying a 2nd hand 2080  Ti, I’ve seen them going for as low as $500 USD,   personally I’d probably be more inclined  to get the 3070 assuming it’s available,   as you get the nice extras like warranty and  knowing it hasn’t been used in a mining farm   or something. The only exception would be if I  really needed the extra VRAM the 2080 Ti offers.

Power Draw

RTX 3070 vs RTX 2080 Ti - Is 3070 Really Better?The 2080 Ti is less efficient too, drawing  around 16% more power in Control at 4K   when compared to the 3070, and the frame  rates were within 1 FPS of each other   at this resolution, so basically  no performance difference either.

Performance Per Watt

RTX 3070 vs RTX 2080 Ti - Is 3070 Really Better?This is further illustrated by  comparing performance per watt,   the 3070 is just able to get more  done with the same amount of power,   which you would expect with the  new and improved architecture.

Content Creation Benchmarks

It’s not all just about gaming though,   I’ve also compared both in content  creator and compute focussed workloads. RTX 3070 vs RTX 2080 Ti - Is 3070 Really Better?I’ve tested DaVinci Resolve with  the Puget Systems benchmark,   and the 3070 was scoring around  10% higher than the 2080 Ti,   so a much bigger difference when  compared to the games covered previously. RTX 3070 vs RTX 2080 Ti - Is 3070 Really Better?The performance gap is even  larger between them in V-Ray,   the 3070 was scoring more than 30% higher than  the 2080 Ti in this one, which makes sense as   these sorts of tests can better leverage the  compute power available compared to the games. RTX 3070 vs RTX 2080 Ti - Is 3070 Really Better?The improvements keep on coming, Blender  was tested with the Open Data benchmark,   and the Classroom test was completing  60% faster on the RTX 3070, though the   shorter BMW test was 21% faster, less of  a difference but still quite significant.

Conclusion

So basically the 3070 is the clear winner,  it uses less power and is more efficient,   it’s cheaper than the 2080 Ti and the  gaming performance isn’t that far behind,   it’s quite similar, and as noted  if you do get a 3070 from a board   partner that’s overclocked out of the box the  performance gap might be much closer together.

I’d only really suggest the 2080 Ti  if you can get an excellent price,   probably second hand if you’re willing,  and really only if you need the extra VRAM,   perhaps for 4K gaming. Otherwise, in  most cases the 3070 makes more sense.

So if the 3070 is the winner here, then the  question really becomes is it worth paying $200   more to go up from the 3070 to get the 3080? I’ve  compared the 3070 and 3080 over in this review.

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