One of the less well kept secrets in graphics hardware today, the upcoming NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3080 Ti, began shipping from manufacturers as recently as Saturday of last week according to Videocardz.com, and the same publication has now revealed that at least one unit has been put through it's paces. 'How?', you might ask; how else but mining Ethereum.
As the name suggests, the GeForce RTX 3080 Ti is something of a half-way house between the RTX 3080 and RTX 3090, leaning heavily towards the latter. It utilises a leaner variant of the GA102 GPU at the heart of every RTX 3090 and supports only 12GB GDDR6X VRAM in its reference configuration. If you can get one it's likely to be a gaming prodigy that rivals its bigger brother, but the relatively minor changes are still likely to mean premium desirability for all market segments (with the possible exception of rendering/CAD design that leverages the RTX 3090's 24GB of VRAM).
Videocardz references an unnamed leaker who may or may not have been able to source a 'qualification sample' of the RTX 3080 Ti that was shipped without an Ethereum cryptocurrency mining limiter. The results speak for themselves - after optimisations to TDP and default clocks the sample in question reached almost 119 MH/s.
A screenshot (above) of GPU-Z running alongside the hashing software gives a more detailed breakdown of the default specifications of the RTX 3080 Ti in question. It's likely equipped with a GA102-225 GPU (a lower binned chip than the GA102-300 of the RTX 3090) that has 10240 CUDA cores enabled clocked at 1365MHz Base/1665MHz Boost, and 12GB of GDDR6X memory operating at an effective 19Gbps (matching the RTX 3080 in speed and exceeding it in quantity).
The GeForce RTX 3080 Ti's release date and pricing has not been publicly revealed. High demand and component shortages are likely to push retailer pricing far beyond an obvious MSRP that sits between the RTX 3080 and 3090, i.e. somewhere around $1000 / £1000. Models from major AIBs are likely to dominate, although it's possible NVIDIA will also sell Founder's Edition cards equipped with a RTX 3090-esq cooler direct to consumers.