Nvidia GeForce RTX 40 series sounds incredible, but there's one big reason I'm not excited

The Nvidia GeForce RTX 40 series specs sound mega. But it's hard to get excited when I still can't even get a RTX 3090 for RRP

Nvidia GeForce RTX 40 series
(Image credit: Nvidia)

A few days ago news broke that the Nvidia GeForce RTX 40 series of graphics cards was incoming next year to assault T3's best graphics cards buying card.

According to the information, which came out of Taiwan from a respected source of tech news, the RTX 40 series is coming in 2022 and will be based on a 5nm TSMC manufacturing process and Ada Lovelace architecture.

This news about a new generation of RTX graphics cards incoming wasn't new. However, the reporting that it uses TSMC's 5nm process and Ada Lovelace architecture backs up other rumors about the RTX 40 series that have already dropped – and specifically about its specs.

Indeed, according to the leaks we've seen slip out over the past few months, the flagship Nvidia 40 series graphics card (let's call it the RTX 4090) is apparently based on the Ada Lovelace architecture and is set to deliver 18,432 CUDA cores with a clock speed pushing up to 2.5GHz and 92 teraflops of compute performance.

That RTX 4090 spec there, if accurate, smokes the RTX 3090 series (the current flagship GPU from Nvidia), which in comparison only has 10,752 CUDA cores, a 1.6GHz clock speed and about 37 teraflops of compute power.

So, yay!, right? Well, for me not really, no. Because as much as I am in awe of these leaked RTX 40 series specs, how am I supposed to get enthused about them when I still, even now a whole year after its release date, can't buy an RTX 3090 (or any 30 series card for that matter) for RRP.

The difficulty PC gamers have had this year to buy any RTX 30 series card has been simply incredible and the fact that if you go to stores you still can't buy cards for RRP 99 per cent of the time is hard to believe.

Yes, there are gamers with RTX 30 series cards, but those who got them (and at RRP) are the lucky ones. 

Scalpers, crypto miners and the pandemic have created a market where actual PC gamers who just want play their games can't buy basically any quality RTX 30 series graphics card for RRP. And the problem doesn't look like it's going away, either.

Indeed, the firm now reported to be manufacturing the RTX 40 series cards, TSMC, has admitted stock shortages will continue into 2022, with its own CEO C.C. Wei telling investors, "we see the demand continue to be high. In 2023, I hope we can offer more capacity to support our customers. At that time, we’ll start to see the supply chain tightness release a little bit."

2022 looks like it is going to be just as much of a write off as 2021 for gamers looking to bag the best new graphics cards, then, so you'll forgive me for not jumping for joy while shouting "woohoo!" on hearing this RTX 40 series news.

If Nvidia can get its 40 series cards into gamer hands, though, then it sure looks like AMD will have its work cut out, as it looks like the series is going to be a proper powerhouse. But right now, with the information I have available to me, that doesn't look like it is going to happen.

Robert Jones

Rob has been writing about computing, gaming, mobile, home entertainment technology, toys (specifically Lego and board games), smart home and more for over 15 years. As the editor of PC Gamer, and former Deputy Editor for T3.com, you can find Rob's work in magazines, bookazines and online, as well as on podcasts and videos, too. Outside of his work Rob is passionate about motorbikes, skiing/snowboarding and team sports, with football and cricket his two favourites.