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2018 Archive

AMD Radeon RX 500 family set to Launch. High End cards to feature Vega 10 chip and Mainstream to feature Vega 11

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In a few months AMD will launch the Radeon RX 500 series, its new generation of High Performance and Mainstream graphics cards. The RX 500 series will replace the RX 400series. It will offer better performance and efficiency to compete directly with the NVIDIA Pascal series. While there is a chance that details might change, AMD has been sending information to several AIBs that the RX 500 series cards will feature the Vega 10 and 11graphics cores.

High Performance Variant of RX 500 Will feature Vega 10 Graphics Core

At CES 2017 AMD showcased their Vega 10 GPU in the Instinct M125. Capable of handling 12.5 TFLOPs (FP32) and 25 TFLOPs (FP16) this product aims to accelerate AI research. Ever since enthusiasts have been eagerly awaiting announcement of the high-performance variants of the RX 500 series family.

Graphics CardR9 Fury XRX 480TBATBA
GPUFiji XTPolaris 10Vega 11Vega 10
Process Node28nm14nm14nm14nm
Stream Processors40962304TBD4096
Performance8.6 TFLOPS
8.6 (FP16) TFLOPS
5.8 TFLOPS
5.8 (FP16) TFLOPS
TBA12.5 TFLOLPS
25 (FP16) TFLOPS
Memory4GB HBM8GB GDDR5TBA8GB HBM2
Memory Bus4096-bit256-bitTBA2048-bit
Bandwidth512 GB/s256 GB/sTBA409.6 GB/s
TDP275W150WTBA<300W
Launch2015201620172017

What do We Know of the AMD Vega 10

NCU (Next Compute Unit) design derived 14nm GFX9 core architecture will be utilized in the new graphics chips.The graphics cards feature 64 Compute Units or 4096 Stream processors and AMD plans to increase throughput by increasing the clock speeds. The increase in throughput will allow AMD to perform better than the 28nm, GCN 3.0 architecture derived Fiji GPUs. Early calculations indicate that the die of the chip spans over 500mm² and features 2 HMB2 stacks which can be extended up to 16 GB of HMB2 VRAM. The demonstration given by AMD on DOOM and Star Wars: Battlefront featured only 8 GB of HMB2 VRAM on the chipset.

The Radeon R9 Fury X, which was the first generation of HMB graphics cards, was limited to just 4 GM of VRAM as it had only one stack of 4 layers (256 MB per layer). The new HMB2 cards have 2 stacks and can clock speeds of 2 Gb/s as compared to 1 Gb/s on HMB1 cards

Vega 11 Graphics Core for Mainstream Tier Cards

The smaller Vega 11 chip will be utilized for the mainstream and performance tier cards. The Vega 11 core will be replacing the Polaris 10 chip as AMD’s standard mainstream chip and will be priced under $300. In order to keep the prices lower AMD might go with the traditional GDDR5X memory or they might use a single stack HMB1. Both these options would limit the maximum memory capacity but will allow fewer errors in the manufacturing process and drive the price down.

There are some rumors that AMD might be continuing development on their Polaris chips because they are AMD’s most competitive product. Chances are that the Radeon RX 460which features the Polaris 11 core might re-branded as the RX 560.

HD 7000 SeriesRadeon 200 SeriesRadeon Fury SeriesRadeon RX 400 SeriesTBA
Flagship GPUTahitiHawaiiFijiPolaris 10Vega #TBA
GCN IteraionGCN 1GCN 2GCN 3GCN 4GCN NCU
Launch20112013201520162017
Die Size352mm2438mm2596mm2232mm2530-560mm2
Memory ArchitectureGDDR5GDDR5HBM1GDDR5HBM2

So far this is all the information that we have available, however the Capsaicin and Cream event, which will live stream from GDC on the 28 of Feb will bring more details. AMD is set to unveil some new Graphics and VR gaming technologies at this event. We should have more details coming in by that time. In the mean time check out the test of the RX 500 in 4 games.

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