It’s clear that millions of PC gamers worldwide are looking forward to the launch of Nvidia’s RTX 40 series graphics cards, the latest iteration of its long-running GeForce brand of cards.
And rumors doing the rounds earlier this year were placing the RTX 40 series cards launch sometime in July, much to the delight of those looking forward to upgrade their PCs with the latest graphics technology from Nvidia.
But “team green”, as the company is known to many in the PC technology space, might not be ready to launch its new line of GeForce graphics cards just yet.
This is because a recent report on German technology site Igor’s Lab (via PC Gamer) says it’s unlikely that the first RTX 40 GPU to launch (the RTX 4090) has completed the engineering and design validation phase yet, meaning that there are currently no working prototypes of Nvidia RTX 40 series cards (the RTX 40 series is also known by its codename Ada Lovelace).
An offshoot of this is that any rumors regarding the performance of the upcoming RTX 40 series cards, such as the GeForce RTX 4090 being twice as fast as the RTX 3090, must be taken with a huge pinch of salt, as without a working card it’s impossible to know for sure how well the Ada Lovelace cards will perform, as the likes of Tom’s Hardware have pointed out.
Actually, according to Igor Labs’ development schedule Nvidia won’t have an RTX 40 series working sample until mid-July. Add to this the production validation test, BIOS and driver development and testing, and Nvidia won’t likely be able to begin producing Ada Lovelace GPUs en masse until late August at least.
This means that the launch of the GeForce RTX 40 series might still take many months… But will it be delayed out of 2022, meaning no next-gen graphics cards coming out of Nvidia’s stable this year?
This is unlikely, because even if Nvidia’s board partners (companies like Zotac, MSI and EVGA, who make graphics cards based on Nvidia’s GPUs) are yet to get their hands on working hardware, and much testing remains to be done, new rumors point to Ada Lovelace-based graphics cards arriving this year.
Actually, website Wccftech has updated its rumored release schedule for Nvidia’s RTX 40 series cards, now claiming that the GeForce RTX 4090 will arrive in October and the RTX 4080 in November, while the RTX 4070 will be hitting shelves in December.
Meanwhile, the mainstream GeForce RTX 4060 cards will be announced at CES 2023, and will seemingly hit the market later in January according to Wccftech’s sources. Well-known leaker kopite7kimi (via VideoCardz) apparently also agrees with this updated release schedule, meaning those hoping to get their hands on a card like the GeForce RTX 4070 will have to wait longer as this latest rumor pushes back its release date by several months.
Nvidia’s delay (a mid-July launch was previously rumored to be on the cards) has to do with the fact that its board partners or AIBs now have more than plenty of stock to go around, with graphics card prices now fast approaching the MSRP or sinking below it. This had to do with the collapse of demand from crypto miners (Bitcoin’s price has plunged by 50 % since November last year) and pandemic-era supply chain bottlenecks which are now coming to an end. So Nvidia and its partners like Zotac or MSI would prefer to clear out most existing GeForce RTX 30 series stock before RTX 40 launches, then.
Going for an RTX 30 series card now might not be such a bad idea as the RTX 40 or Ada Lovelace series will apparently be more power hungry than its predecessors. Actually, a recent report by website VideoCardz said Nvidia is working on a 3-fan cooling solution for its RTX 40 series cards, when it had never resorted to a triple fan cooler before.
The reason for this is the RTX 40 series high power requirements. It’s rumored that even the mainstream GeForce RTX 4060 could draw 220 W or more, as much as the higher-end RTX 3070 of the current RTX 30 series.
Meanwhile, the GeForce RTX 4070 could consume as much as 400 W as per rumors, but it’s final power draw is more likely to be between 300 W to 350 W. The RTX 4090 and RTX 4080 will surely require more than 400 W of power while an RTX 4090 Ti model could have a power requirement of 600 W or more… This means some users will have to upgrade their power supplies if they want to run a high-end Ada Lovelace GPU in their rigs, that’s for sure.
But even if the rumors point to the RTX 40 series being more power hungry than its predecessor, rumored performance gains are so good that likely many PC technology enthusiasts and gamers are eagerly waiting for Nvidia to announce what could be their most exciting graphics card line-up in years.
Update: Tech website VideoCardz (via notebookcheck.net) is now reporting that the GeForce RTX 4090 will be hitting shelves in September according to its sources. The RTX 4080 will apparently arrive in October, while the RTX 4070 will hit retail in November according to the latest rumors.
GeForce RTX 30 series card (Nvidia Corporation)
Jensen Huang at Computex Taipei (link) [Creative Commons (link)]