ASUS RTX 3080 GPUs Use the Best Caps, Followed by FE

The capacitor design of various board partner cards has been shared by Harukaze on Twitter and it shows which of them use the best ones. Keep in mind that the capacitor quality directly affects the VRM and power supply and is also related to the crashes occurring on the board partner RTX 3080 GPUs.

In the above pictures, the black capacitors are called POS-CAPs (polymer capacitors) while the small rectangular ones are called MLCCs (multilayer ceramic capacitors). Now, the latter are much more superior as they can react to voltage changes faster which in-turn allows for a smoother frequency transition when GPU Boost is enacted.

POSCAPs hold more power, but they also take more time to respond to changes in the voltage requirements for a more stable boost. MLCCs, on the other hand, hold smaller charges but can modulate it faster and more accurately as per demand from the GPU firmware. It’s for this reason that vendors use multiple (4-8) MLCCs in place of single POSCAP.

As you can see in the above image, the FE board has four POSCAPs and aggregates of two MLCCs. The MSI Trio X and Palit Pro OC have just one MLCC, but four POSCAPs. Zotac, on the other, doesn’t have a single MLCC in its trinity RTX 3080 variant. This is the reason why users have reported that it’s slower than the FE card despite having the same specs.

Finally, we have the ASUS TUF Gaming OC which is on the other end of the spectrum with no POSCAPs and six MLCCs. This is one of the reasons why the ASUS cards are the most expensive and stable. The low-quality caps also explain why Zotac cards are the cheapest. However, while that may have worked with earlier generations, Ampere which uses a much more complex power supply and PCB, it’s certainly going to cause problems for the end-users.


Computer hardware enthusiast, PC gamer, and almost an engineer. Former co-founder of Techquila (2017-2019), a fairly successful tech outlet. Been working on Hardware Times since 2019, an outlet dedicated to computer hardware and its applications.
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