Gossip that just won't quit in 2022 is that Nvidia is planning to bolster the memory capacity on a portion of its RTX 30-series graphics cards. These tales have existed in some form or another since 2020, and even reared their head again as recently as December, though up to this point no new cards have materialized.
I'll admit, I'm starting to lose trust in the entire affair, yet according to WCCFTech, Nvidia could be planning to make moves as early as tomorrow, January 11.
WCCFTech claims to have addressed sources that relayed a January 11 announcement date for a Nvidia GeForce RTX 3080 12GB, and that preorders and sales should begin that same day. That would see the card release before the RTX 3050 and RTX 3090 Ti, both of which were announced at CES 2022. The RTX 3080 12GB, be that as it may, did not make an appearance during the show.
According to this same report, this graphics card would not just increase memory capacity from 10GB to 12GB, but also incorporate a wider, 384-bit memory transport. That would result in a higher memory bandwidth for the moderately improved card.
Further reported specification adjustments could see CUDA Core counts increase from 8,704 to 8,960, thanks to an increase in SM count from 68 to 70. This would also would see RT Cores increase from 68 to 70.
All of this would reportedly put the RTX 3080 12GB's TDP at around 350W—and a little bit nearer to the already too-dangerous RTX 3080 Ti.
These improvements over the 10GB RTX 3080 are indeed possible. There are two spare pads for memory chips going free on the RTX 3080 10GB, which could be occupied with two additional 1GB GDDR6X chips for 12GB in total. Similarly, the RTX 3080 and RTX 3080 Ti both utilize the same GA102 GPU, which means greater center counts are within reach.
Though, these upgrades would likely result in just a marginal performance improvement over the 10GB RTX 3080. That's the thing, while a RTX 3080 12GB is absolutely possible, it would be an oddity.
I'm wired to be pessimistic about any tentative release date for these cards after being given the go around for north of a year, but there's more to it than that.