Nvidia RTX 5090: rumors, possible specs, and everything we know

 A mystery GPU with a colorful burst behind it.
A mystery GPU with a colorful burst behind it.

Nvidia's RTX 5000-series graphics cards have been clinging to the tech world grapevine for at least a year, with one of the most speculated cards being the Nvidia RTX 5090. It's the flagship of the lineup and would likely be the best graphics card on the market once it actually launches.

With how well the current-gen flagship Nvidia RTX 4090 was reviewed (we cited it as one of the best graphics cards ever released), there are high expectations for next-gen cards, and the RTX 5090 in particular bears the brunt of that. The Nvidia Lovelace generation as a whole has been a mixed bag in terms of performance and pricing, which adds even more pressure to the 5090 to succeed in both aspects.

However, it's still too early to say whether it can live up to these expectations, with plenty more to learn about until it's officially revealed by Nvidia. For now, let's go over what we do know thanks to all the rumors and leaks.

Nvidia RTX 5090: Cut to the chase

  • What is it? Nvidia's rumored flagship for its next generation of RTX graphics cards

  • How much does it cost? Unknown at this time, but will likely scale similarly to Nvidia Lovelace GPUs in price

  • When can I get it? The earliest we expect to see the Nvidia RTX 5090 would be late 2024 or early 2025, but the RTX 5080 might arrive first

Nvidia RTX 5090: Latest news

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Nvidia RTX 5090: Release date

Though there's no official release date for the Nvidia RTX 5090, thanks to the tech rumor mill we do have an idea as to when the card could come out. And since the global chip shortage has eased up, there aren't any predicted delays for the next generation chip either.

All signs seem to point to late 2024 or early 2025 at the absolute earliest, which ties into the normal 18 to 24-month release cycle that Nvidia usually abides by. There are also recent rumors suggesting that it could be coming out after the RTX 5080, and that could push back the RTX 5090's release to 2025. The rumor mill seems to have been a bit back and forth on this of late, so we'll just have to keep a watchful eye on fresh chatter from the grapevine. But right now, speculation is still leaning towards the RTX 5080 coming first.

a plane flying through the air
a plane flying through the air

Nvidia RTX 5090: Specs

There has been some information coming out concerning the Nvidia RTX 5090's specs, with the most important being that it's likely based on Nvidia Blackwell architecture, the rumored early code name for the Nvidia Lovelace successor. It's also been called Lovelace-Next by Nvidia in official presentation materials.

We also learned that the 16-pin 12VHPWR connector could be a standard for the 5090 and other 5000-series cards, meaning even third-party board partners would need to use the it. It's also rumored to feature a 512-bit memory bus that is 33% wider than the one on Nvidia’s RTX 4090, the memory bandwidth will feature a 77% boost compared to the 4090, and 28Gbps GDDR7 memory modules which would be 33% faster than the 21Gbps memory modules in the RTX 4090.

We recently heard rumors that Nvidia would finally be switching some of its Blackwell GPUs over to a multi-chiplet module (MCM) design, following in the footsteps of AMD and Intel. Whether this will include the Nvidia 5000 series GPUs isn't clear, however, since the rumors only specified the GB100 GPU, which is a commercial-grade chip for servers, data centers, and industrial use.

Still, an MCM Nvidia GPU could provide a big boost to performance if done properly, and given that archrival AMD is already using MCMs in its GPUs, Nvidia can't afford to get left behind here.

We've also seen some purported specs for an RTX 5090 from Chiphell forum user Panzerlied, a fairly reliable hardware leaker. According to a now-deleted post, the RTX 5090 will boast some impressive spec upgrades over the RTX 4090:

If these specs pan out, this should give the RTX 5090 a massive gen-on-gen boost, with the same post that detailed the specs claiming that the RTX 5090's performance was 1.7 times faster than the RTX 4090, which is downright wild.

Beyond this, there isn't much else that we know about these GPUs, such as what process node they will be fabricated on, who will be doing the fab (though it'll almost certainly be TSMC, as was the case with Nvidia Lovelace), and what kind of core counts and clock speeds we should expect.

Nvidia RTX 5090: What to expect

As mentioned, expectations are currently leaning towards the RTX 5090 arriving second, following on the heels of the RTX 5080, which might be the initial Blackwell GeForce graphics card - though we still don't know for sure by any means.

Another point recently raised is that the RTX 5080 may have a decent volume of stock available at launch, so can we hope the same might be true of the RTX 5090? Well, probably not, as the trouble with the Blackwell flagship is that Nvidia is surely going to be prioritizing AI GPUs over it. Time will tell, and we certainly have to take all of this with a hefty grain of salt for the time being.