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Rent an RTX 3080 in the Cloud With New GeForce Now Plan

RTX 3080
(Image credit: Nvidia)

If you want to play games on an RTX 3080 card, but can't find one for sale or afford to build a PC worthy of one of the best graphics cards, Nvidia's GeForce Now has a solution. The cloud gaming service is adding a new plan that allows you to stream games from an RTX 3080-enabled server for up to eight hours a day. Available for pre-order today with the launch soon, the GeForce Now RTX 3080 plan will cost $99 for six months (around $16.67 per month) and run at up to 1440p resolution with 120 fps on computers or 4K HDR 60 fps on Shield TV.

Nvidia's GeForce Now cloud gaming service officially launched in early 2020 after a full five years in public beta. The service allows you to play any of hundreds of supported PC games on a remote server, provided that you bought the game separately or it's a free-to-play title. In addition, you can play on a wide variety of devices, from PCs and Macs to phones and Nvidia shield TVs. It can even run in a web browser, making it possible to use on a variety of platforms, including Chrome OS.

Up until now, there have been two tiers of GeForce Now membership: a free tier that provides basic gameplay for up to one hour at a time and a Premium tier that costs $49.99 for six months and gives you priority access. The latter also provides RTX ray tracing and game play of up to 60 fps at 1080p. For double the price, the new RTX 3080 tier increases session time to up to eight hours, along with the increased resolution and frame rate. 

GeForce Now Membership

(Image credit: Nvidia)

Inside its data centers, Nvidia is adding its new GeForce Now Superpods, which are capable of 39,200 TFLOPS of processing apiece, along with their 11,477,760 CUDA cores and 8,960 CPU cores. Though these servers provide enough processing power to give each user on the new plan access to a dedicated RTX 3080, Nvidia is limiting the number of orders so that the number of users on the top tier won't exceed capacity.

Superpod

(Image credit: Nvidia)

If you're going to sign up for GeForce Now's RTX 3080 plan, expect to use more bandwidth than on the other plans. Nvidia requires at least 25 Mbps for 1080p 60 fps play and, using the RTX 3080 plan to move up to 1440p will require 35 Mbps. Nvidia requires that you connect over Ethernet or 5 GHz Wi-Fi.

The new plan promises sub-60ms latency, which Nvidia says is quicker than Xbox Series X and Project xCloud, both of which are over 90ms. The Premium tier's RTX 2080 card promises a solid latency of 81ms itself.

Latency

(Image credit: Nvidia)

GeForce Now is also getting its own form of adaptive sync which adjusts the frame rate to match the client screen's fixed refresh rate. So your display will not need to support G-Sync or FreeSync, because it's the stream itself that changes.

Adaptive Sync

(Image credit: Nvidia)

We haven't had a chance to test out GeForce Now's RTX 3080 plan yet, but it sounds like a boon for users who don't have modern gaming PCs. According to Nvidia, most of its current GeForce Now users have laptops with integrated graphics and their average session is about an hour. So, if you've got a lightweight ultrabook or even a phone, you can play PC games that would normally require one of the best gaming laptops

However, if you already have a decent, last-gen gaming PC, the choice is not as clear. Depending on your bandwidth, any data caps you might have and the games you like to play, using local hardware could be easier. We'll have more to say on this once we get to try the new service in the near future.

Avram Piltch
Avram Piltch is Tom's Hardware's editor-in-chief. When he's not playing with the latest gadgets at work or putting on VR helmets at trade shows, you'll find him rooting his phone, taking apart his PC or coding plugins. With his technical knowledge and passion for testing, Avram developed many real-world benchmarks, including our laptop battery test.
  • 2Be_or_Not2Be
    Well, there's a reason for some of the shortage in GPUs.
    Reply
  • TinyFatMan
    Is it a "new strategy" from nVidia (and AMD soon) to artificially create a lack of graphics cards to sell them 5000% more expensive, and therefore accessible to the rich, and that those who cannot afford to rent one card in the "fabulous" cloud?

    As if we were not spied on enough, it will add to the infinity of technological means to do so, and of course always make more money to feed the tax havens that are crumbling under the mop or more.

    With "FreeToPlay" (PayToWin - making cheating legal) we have killed video games.
    Will graphics cards be made accessible only to the rich?
    Soon $ 10,000 for an “RTX 4015 MM”?
    Reply
  • VforV
    nvidia would make much more money mining with those GPUs than doing this.... just saying...

    Of course I would prefer them to be sold at MSRP.
    Reply
  • Geezer760
    Who in their right mind would fall for this SCAM, it just show how greedy these people are.
    Reply
  • Geezer760
    TinyFatMan said:
    Is it a "new strategy" from nVidia (and AMD soon) to artificially create a lack of graphics cards to sell them 5000% more expensive, and therefore accessible to the rich, and that those who cannot afford to rent one card in the "fabulous" cloud?

    As if we were not spied on enough, it will add to the infinity of technological means to do so, and of course always make more money to feed the tax havens that are crumbling under the mop or more.

    With "FreeToPlay" (PayToWin - making cheating legal) we have killed video games.
    Will graphics cards be made accessible only to the rich?
    Soon $ 10,000 for an “RTX 4015 MM”?
    EXACTLY.
    Reply
  • dalauder
    TinyFatMan said:
    Is it a "new strategy" from nVidia (and AMD soon) to artificially create a lack of graphics cards to sell them 5000% more expensive, and therefore accessible to the rich, and that those who cannot afford to rent one card in the "fabulous" cloud?

    As if we were not spied on enough, it will add to the infinity of technological means to do so, and of course always make more money to feed the tax havens that are crumbling under the mop or more.

    With "FreeToPlay" (PayToWin - making cheating legal) we have killed video games.
    Will graphics cards be made accessible only to the rich?
    Soon $ 10,000 for an “RTX 4015 MM”?
    Video games are only dead if you require a fancy new graphics card. I'm happy with my RX 480, especially since everything since Battlefield 3 has had good enough graphics.
    Reply
  • USAFRet
    VforV said:
    Of course I would prefer them to be sold at MSRP.
    They were.
    Scalpers got to them first, and now want to sell to you at a big profit.
    Reply
  • Alvar "Miles" Udell
    Well it's really not a SCAM if you think about it, it's basically like leasing a car. A 3080 MSRPs at $700, so if you "rent" one for $200 a year, it's 3.5 years before you hit that break even point. If you go by the inflated prices these days it's 5 years before you hit break even, about the time when most people will have replaced their GPU. You lose the resale value, but you don't have to worry about it dying, that's the tradeoff of a lease for being able to access it on any PC with the internet requirement.
    Reply
  • Phaaze88
    Well, as long as I continue to live out in the countryside, this will never be an option.

    Geezer760 said:
    Who in their right mind would fall for this SCAM, it just show how greedy these people are.
    MANY people would jump on this. We can't give them the benefit of the doubt anymore.
    Reply
  • dalauder
    USAFRet said:
    They were.
    Scalpers got to them first, and now want to sell to you at a big profit.
    I don't understand why the cards are sold so low to scalpers. Why not just charge 5x as much at MSRP so that scalpers get nothing?
    Reply