NVIDIA GeForce RTX 4090 runs up to 2850 MHz at a storage temperature below 50 degrees Celsius in Cyberpunk 2077, DLSS 3 lowers GPU power by 25%

The flagship NVIDIA GeForce RTX 4090 graphics card flaunted some big numbers in a short game demo featuring Cyberpunk 2077 and DLSS 3.

NVIDIA GeForce RTX 4090 unveiled in Cyberpunk 2077: 2X increase with DLSS 3, 2.85GHz clocks in stock, temperatures around 50 degrees Celsius and reduced power

The presented demo used the NVIDIA GeForce RTX 4090 Founders Edition graphics card, which we have described in detail here. The card was paired with an Intel Core i9-12900K system and ran Cyberpunk 2077 at 1440p with Ultra Ray Tracing and Psycho settings (or max settings). At native resolution, without DLSS and Reflex, the game ran an average of 59 FPS (49 FPS 1% Low), looking at a constant frame and 72-75ms latency.

With these settings, the GPU ran over 2.8 GHz, averaging around 2810-2850 MHz (min / max), and with 100% use, the temperatures remained constant between 50-55C. That’s a difference of up to 330 MHz compared to the reference boost clock of 2520 MHz (an increase of 13%), and it’s impressive that there was no overclocking! It all happened in a warehouse. This is just one game, and we can see even faster clock speeds in others. The card has since been reported to run above 3 GHz with overclocking.

But now we need to talk about performance with DLSS 3 enabled. The game was using the DLSS 3 pre-release version, so performance and settings will be different in the final release. As soon as the DLSS 3 setting is enabled, the DLSS Frame Generation setting is also enabled. This was using the “Quality” setting and once again we saw full use of the GPU at clocks over 2.8 GHz, but this time the temperatures were closer to 50 ° C than 55 ° C (remember that). The NVIDIA GeForce RTX 4090 achieved a performance increase to an average of 170 FPS (119 FPS 1% drops) with DLSS 3 support enabled and an average latency of 53.00 ms. This is a 2x improvement in FPS and a 30% improvement in latency compared to disabled DLSS.

NVIDIA GeForce RTX 4090 in Cyberpunk 2077 (DLSS 3 disabled):

nvidia-geforce-rtx-4090-cyberpunk-2077-dlss-3-gpu-clock-temps-power-_2
nvidia-geforce-rtx-4090-cyberpunk-2077-dlss-3-gpu-clock-temps-power-_3

NVIDIA GeForce RTX 4090 in Cyberpunk 2077 (with DLSS 3 support):

nvidia-geforce-rtx-4090-cyberpunk-2077-dlss-3-gpu-clock-temps-power-_1
nvidia-geforce-rtx-4090-cyberpunk-2077-dlss-3-gpu-clock-temps-power-_4

But that’s not all, using the latest PCAT utility that supports 16-pin PCIe 5.0 (12VPHWR) plug, NVIDIA also reported power data with DLSS off and on. After disabling DLSS 3, the NVIDIA GeForce RTX 4090 graphics card consumed an average of 461 watts with a performance per watt (frames / joule) of 0.135 points. As soon as DLSS 3 was turned on, the GPU saw a power drop to 348W, or a 25% reduction. This also increased the efficiency per watt to 0.513, an increase of 3.8x.

Presentation of the NVIDIA GeForce RTX 4090 Cyberpunk 2077

Cyberpunk 2077 1440P (Maximum Settings + Ultra RT + Psycho) NVIDIA GeForce RTX 4090 NVIDIA GeForce RTX 4090 NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3090 Ti NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3090 Ti
DLSS 3 Disabled (native) Enabled (quality) Disabled (native) Enabled (DLSS 2 quality)
FPS (average) 59.9 170.7 35.8 61.9
FPS (1% of wells) 49.3 119.6
FPS (Min) 40.6 91.2
Latency (average) 75.4 ms 53.5 ms
GPU clock 2800-2850 MHz (backup) 2800-2850 MHz (backup) 2000-2050 MHz 2000-2050 MHz
GPU temperature 50-57C 50-53C 70-75C 70-75C
GPU power 461.3W 348.9 Watts 454.2W 409.2W
Performance PCAT / W (FPS / Joule) 0.135 0.513 0.079 0.152

Update: We’ve also added the performance scores of our GeForce RTX 3090 Ti with DLSS support enabled and disabled. We use a custom MSI SUPRIM X design which features a higher factory OC, so the performance should be slightly better than the FE variant. The card in stock averaged 37.2 FPS in native 1440p with the same settings and the same scene. The card consumed 452 W of power and works around 75C. When DLSS 2 “Quality” was enabled, we achieved an increase to 61 frames per second (an increase of 64%) and power consumption also decreased to 409 W (a decrease of -10%). Here is the result.

Cyberpunk 2077 Ultra Quality + Psycho RT (1440p native):

  • MSI RTX 3090 TI SUPRIM X (Standard 1440p) – 37 FPS / 455 W Power / ~ 75C
  • NVIDIA RTX 4090 FE (Standard 1440p Release) – 60 FPS / 461 W Power / ~ 55C
  • RTX 4090 vs RTX 3090 Ti = + 62% faster

Cyberpunk 2077 Ultra Quality + Psycho RT (DLSS 1440p):

  • MSI RTX 3090 Ti SUPRIM X (DLSS 2 1440p) – 61fps / 409W of power / 74C
  • NVIDIA RTX 4090 FE (DLSS 3 1440p) – 170 FPS / 348 W Power / ~ 50C
  • RTX 4090 vs RTX 3090 Ti = + 178% faster
nvidia-geforce-rtx-3090-ti-dlss-disabled
nvidia-geforce-rtx-3090-ti-dlss-enabled

The power figures are really a big deal, and one of the reasons why it does is because the load on the FP32 cores is shifted to the tensor cores that support DLSS algorithms. These cores specialize in these conversations, and instead of brutally forcing the entire GPU which causes more power consumption, tensor cores can process data much faster and more efficiently while also leading to lower power consumption. DLSS 3 can change the rules of the game in terms of energy efficiency and performance, and we really can’t wait to test it ourselves once we get our review samples.

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