Nvidia’s cut-down version of the RTX 4090 graphics card for the Chinese market is incoming and we’re told the GPU is on track for its purported release, likely early in 2024.
This new spin, supposedly called the RTX 4090 D (with the ‘D’ referring to Dragon, as 2024 is the Year of the Dragon in China), has had some of its specs leaked, as well.
Previously we weren’t told anything about the specs at all, save that it’ll apparently use an AD102-250 chip that’ll have a fair few CUDA cores disabled compared to the full loadout of the RTX 4090 flagship (using AD102-300 or 301).
But now we have clock speeds courtesy of a well-known leaker on X (formerly Twitter), MEGAsizeGPU.
While the default boost clock of the RTX 4090 D will remain the same as the standard RTX 4090, we’re told the base clock will actually be notched up a bit to 2280MHz. That could be to at least partly offset some of the performance loss from dropping a chunk of graphics cores.
We aren’t told any other specs, and notably there’s no information on exactly how brutal Nvidia might be with its core cutting on this RTX 4090 D variant.
Analysis: Are we looking at a February launch date?
It’s likely that if the RTX 4090 D graphics card is real, it’s coming soon. As the leaker observes further in the thread of that tweet, they have all the specs – including the aforementioned core count – they just aren’t sharing them to protect their source.
Indeed, MEGAsizeGPU apparently has the box art – and if that’s ready, this again suggests that the RTX 4090 D could be on shelves soon. Given that the Year of the Dragon begins in February 2024, that seems the most likely launch date at this point – in terms of Nvidia getting this out sharpish, which it will surely want to do to tap into the profits to be made in China. (Some rumors even indicate a possible January launch).
The other thing we don’t know for sure is availability, and whether the RTX 4090 D will be exclusive to China. This seems likely given the name of the variant, and that it’s specifically designed to get around the US import ban, allowing Nvidia to benefit from a Chinese market desperate for these high-end Lovelace graphics cards. Demand for RTX 4090s has been so high, and so many have been shipped to Asia, that prices have even shot up in the US and elsewhere sadly.