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Nvidia RTX 40-Series Ada GPUs Will Likely Coexist With RTX 30-Series

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(Image credit: Shutterstock)

Nvidia will likely continue making and selling its RTX 30-series graphics cards even after it launches its next-generation "Ada" GPUs. The company's CFO, Colette Kress, suggested as much at Morgan Stanley's Technology, Media and Telecom Conference (opens in new tab). PCMag first reported on Kress' comments.

The Covid-19 pandemic and the supply chain issues it exacerbated gave Nvidia an "opportunity" for the gaming side of the business to sell both RTX 30-series and Turing-architecture based RTX 20-series graphics cards, Kress said. "So we’ve been doing that to provide more and more supply to our gamers," Kress said. "And we may see something like that continue in the future. It was successful with Ampere and we'll see as we move forward.”

Nvidia has continued to produce the RTX 2060 alongside RTX 3000 cards and even made a new version with 12GB of memory in December to make more GPUs available during the component shortage, though even that stock was scarce. There's also still the upcoming RTX 2050 mobile solution, which will arrive in the coming months.

Nvidia's next-gen graphics cards, which will presumably be the RTX 40-series, are likely to launch in phases. Typically, Nvidia has launched with its top-end cards and followed up with lower tier variants, sometimes launching 12 months or more later. It wouldn't be surprising to see an RTX 4090, RTX 4080 and perhaps RTX 4070 launch first, with the RTX 3060 and RTX 3050 sticking around as entry and mid-level cards. That pattern happened as the Turing-based GTX 1650 and GTX 1660 cards stuck around with the new, Ampere-based RTX 3070, RTX 3080 and RTX 3090 leading the charge.

In that way, Nvidia has been selling cards from different generations side by side for a long time. It isn't uncommon for any chipmaker to continue to produce older silicon. On the CPU side, for instance, Intel and AMD typically produce older chips for several generations. In this case, though, the cards are being kept around in order to continue to satisfy the needs of gamers who haven't been able to upgrade to the best graphics cards due to the shortages.

"We believe the supply will improve each quarter of this year," Kress said. "And we feel like we'll be in a solid position when we look at the second half of this year."

Still, Kress is suggesting, if not confirming, this strategy will continue, and that keeping old GPUs around may be necessary to keep enough GPUs in the channel so Nvidia can meet demand.

Kress stressed Nvidia was not ready to announce any new products at the investor event, though we "may hear more" about upcoming plans at GTC. The recent Nvidia hack has resulted in a wealth of information about Nvidia's upcoming GPU plans, and all indications are that we'll see Ada and RTX 40-series graphics cards this fall.

Andrew E. Freedman is a senior editor at Tom's Hardware focusing on laptops, desktops and gaming. He also keeps up with the latest news. A lover of all things gaming and tech, his previous work has shown up in Tom's Guide, Laptop Mag, Kotaku, PCMag and Complex, among others. Follow him on Twitter: @FreedmanAE

  • sizzling
    New pricing strategy coming
    Reply
  • InvalidError
    sizzling said:
    New pricing strategy coming
    Price the new generation so high that you need the previous generation to cover the sub-$800 market!
    Reply
  • watzupken
    I feel this is a good strategy. At least keep the RTX 3000 series around until the supply for RTX 4000 series is stabilised before pulling the plug. I feel this was the issue when they introduced Ampere, and they stopped Turing cards too soon. As a result, the supply for RTX 3000 series is too low and caused a lack of GPU supply at least for some time.
    However knowing Nvidia, they are probably doing this for some other reasons. Chances is that they are trying to address the issue mentioned earlier, but also because this allows them to price the RTX 4000 series higher.
    Reply
  • watzupken
    InvalidError said:
    Price the new generation so high that you need the previous generation to cover the sub-$800 market!
    Next gen cards cannot be cheap in my opinion. Since all the big players are stuck on TSMC’s 5nm (or the refined 4nm), I doubt TSMC will underprice any allocation(s). Compared to the older and less advance Samsung 10nm ( or what they call 8nm), I suspect the Samsung node will be much cheaper for Nvidia since Samsung wanted to win Nvidia over at that point in time. And because Nvidia has been hopping around to source for better deals, chances is that TSMC may charge them a premium for any allocations.
    Reply
  • InvalidError
    watzupken said:
    I feel this was the issue when they introduced Ampere, and they stopped Turing cards too soon. As a result, the supply for RTX 3000 series is too low and caused a lack of GPU supply at least for some time.
    It wouldn't have helped: there were already shortages of VRM components back then and then you had shortages of GDDR6 at about the same time due to the nearly simultaneous launches of RTX3k, RX6k, PS5 and XBS-XS.

    Continuing to make your older chips based on previous-gen process to help meet demand only helps when your own leading-edge wafer supply is the single major bottleneck.
    Reply
  • rluker5
    So 30 series msrp will probably stay the same with retail dropping closer to it, and the 40 series will cost more relative to the performance it puts out. Another gen with little improvement in perf/$.

    I'm guessing AMD is going along with this plan?

    Is Intel working on professional drivers or what? Games play proportionately fine on my uhd 770.
    But I'm sure there will be a couple bugs, even AMD and Nvidia still have them.
    It is just taking too long for Intel to enter the market. The door is wide open. They shouldn't let perfect be the enemy of the good.
    Reply
  • spentshells
    its a die shrink with the same tech refined andeexpanded upon
    Reply
  • Sci666
    Rtx 4000 so early? I hope they do not the same mess with the models..... The weaker one with more ram and different Version of one model. 10 vs 12 GB.... Etc.
    Reply
  • watzupken
    rluker5 said:
    So 30 series msrp will probably stay the same with retail dropping closer to it, and the 40 series will cost more relative to the performance it puts out. Another gen with little improvement in perf/$.

    I'm guessing AMD is going along with this plan?

    Is Intel working on professional drivers or what? Games play proportionately fine on my uhd 770.
    But I'm sure there will be a couple bugs, even AMD and Nvidia still have them.
    It is just taking too long for Intel to enter the market. The door is wide open. They shouldn't let perfect be the enemy of the good.
    Assuming no crazy mining demand for GPUs, I feel this supposed MSRP is not going to be the same as Ampere’s launch day MSRP. You are probably looking at the “new” MSRP introduced with the new cards like RTX 3070 Ti, RTX 3080 12GB, RTX 3080 TI, etc. Nvidia is not known to slash prices at the end of the product cycle, so I won’t expect the successor to cost cheaper if they perform better. The AIB partners will make sure of that.
    Reply
  • Sci666
    we need new law to prevent selling items over 100%+ msrp ..... why should i pay the same pricew for a 3060 when i can theoreically buy a 3080 or buy a 3080 for the same price like the 3090 ....this is sick !!!!!
    Reply