NVIDIA RTX 3500 Ada Generation Laptop GPU
The Nvidia RTX 3500 Ada Generation is a higher-end professional graphics card for use in laptops that sports 5,120 CUDA cores and 12 GB of ECC GDDR6 VRAM. Brought into existence in 2023, this graphics adapter leverages TSMC's 5 nm process and Nvidia's Ada Lovelace architecture to achieve great performance combined with moderate power consumption.
Hardware-wise, the RTX 3500 is a cut-down GeForce RTX 4070 (Desktop), as far as we can tell. Consequently, it makes use of the same AD104 chip and will have little difficulty running triple-A games at QHD 1440p.
Quadro series graphics cards ship with a different BIOS and drivers than GeForce cards and are targeted at professional use rather than gaming. Product design, large-scale calculations, simulation, data mining, 24 x 7 operation and certified drivers - if any of this sounds familiar, then a Quadro card will make you happy.
Architecture & Features
Ada Lovelace brings a range of improvements over older graphics cards utilizing the outgoing Ampere architecture. It's not just the better manufacturing process and the higher number of CUDA cores that we have here (up to 16,384 versus 10,752); under-the-hood refinements are plentiful, including the immensely larger L2 cache, the optimized ray tracing routine achieved by simplifying the evaluation of what is transparent and what isn't, and other changes. Naturally, these graphics cards can both encode and decode some of the most widely used video codecs, AVC, HEVC and AV1 included; they also support a host of Nvidia technologies, including Optimus and DLSS 3. The latter employs machine learning to generate additional frames on the fly for manyfold frame rate increase in supported games at the cost of just a few artifacts.
The RTX 3500 features 40 RT cores of the 3rd generation, 160 Tensor cores of the 4th generation and 5,120 CUDA cores. Multiply those numbers by 1.15 and what you get looks exactly like the desktop RTX 4070: 46, 184 and 5,888, respectively. Elsewhere, the graphics card comes with 12 GB of 192 bit wide (optional ECC) GDDR6 memory for throughput of ~432 GB/s. The fact that error correction circuitry is present here proves that the RTX 3500 is indeed targeted at professional users.
Just like Ampere-based cards, the RTX 3500 makes use of the PCI-Express 4 protocol. 8K SUHD monitors are supported, however, the DP 1.4a video outputs can potentially prove to be a bottleneck down the line.
While we have not tested a single system featuring the RTX 3500 Ada Generation as of August 2023, we have plenty of performance data for the RTX 4070 (Desktop), a graphics card that's about 20% superior to the RTX 3500 Ada Generation. Based on that, we fully expect the RTX 3500 to deliver:
- Blender 3.3 Classroom CUDA score of around 30 seconds
- 3DMark 11 GPU score of around 45,000
- at least 90 fps in GTA V (1440p - Highest settings possible, 16x AF, 4x MSAA, FXAA)
- at least 50 fps in Cyberpunk 2077 (1440p - High settings, Ultra RT, "Quality" DLSS)
Nvidia's marketing materials mention 23 TFLOPS of performance, a 15% improvement over the 20 TFLOPS delivered by the RTX 3000 Ada Generation.
Your mileage may vary depending on how competent the cooling solution of your laptop is and how high the TGP power target of the RTX 3500 is. One other thing worth mentioning is that enabling ECC RAM mode appears to reduce the amount of video memory that is available to applications and games by up to a gigabyte.
Nvidia no longer divides its laptop graphics cards into Max-Q and non-max-Q models. Instead, laptop makers are free to set the TGP according to their needs, and the range can sometimes be shockingly wide. This is the case for the RTX 3500, as the lowest value recommended for it sits at just 60 W while the highest is more than two times higher at 140 W (including dynamic boost most likely). The slowest system built around the RTX 3500 can easily be 50% slower than the fastest one. This is the kind of delta that we've seen on consumer-grade laptops featuring the latest GeForce RTX cards.
Last but not the least, the improved 5 nm process (TSMC 4N) the RTX 3500 is built with makes for very decent energy efficiency, as of mid 2023.
RTX Ada Generation Series
|Pipelines||5120 - unified|
|Tensor / AI Cores||160|
|Theoretical Performance||23 TFLOPS FP32|
|Memory Speed||16000 effective = 2000 MHz|
|Memory Bus Width||192 Bit|
|Max. Amount of Memory||12 GB|
|Memory Bandwidth||432 GB/s|
|API||DirectX 12 Ultimate, Shader 6.7, OpenGL 4.6, OpenCL 3.0, Vulkan 1.3|
|Power Consumption||115 Watt (60 - 115 Watt TGP)|
|Displays||4 Displays (max.), HDMI 2.1, DisplayPort 1.4a|
|Date of Announcement||21.03.2023|
|Link to Manufacturer Page||nvdam.widen.net|
|Predecessor||RTX A3000 Laptop GPU|
- Average benchmark values for this graphics card
* Smaller numbers mean a higher performance
For more games that might be playable and a list of all games and graphics cards visit our Gaming List
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