Tag Archives: AMD Polaris

AMD Radeon RX 590 Unveiled – The Last Of The Polaris?

AMD just unveiled the latest and probably the last of the Polaris – the AMD Radeon RX 590 graphics card! Let’s find out what AMD is squeezing out of their Polaris microarchitecture!

 

The AMD Radeon RX 590 Graphics Card

Powered by the AMD Polaris architecture , the AMD Radeon RX 590 graphics card provides faster clock speeds than the AMD Radeon RX 580 graphics card, delivering up to 20 percent better performance-per-dollar than the competition.

Paired with the AMD Radeon FreeSync gaming display technology and loaded with the latest AMD Radeon Software features, the AMD Radeon RX 590 graphics card promises to deliver a better gaming experience.

“This new graphics card provides beautiful visuals, blistering frame rates, and the latest and greatest features for PC gaming.Combined with AMD Radeon FreeSync technology4 for smooth, stutter-free gaming, game Day-0 launch performance updates and an ever-expanding Radeon Software feature set, the Radeon RX 590 graphics card provides an amazing experience for the legions of performance and hard-core gamers everywhere.”said Scott Herkelman, corporate vice president and general manager, Radeon Technologies Group at AMD. 

 

AMD Radeon RX 590 Key Features

Outstanding Gaming Performance : The AMD Radeon RX 590 graphics card is built upon 12 nm process technology and the AMD Polaris architecture, including 4th Gen GCN graphics cores, display engine and multimedia cores to enable exceptional performance in low-level APIs like DirectX 12 and Vulkan. It also provides a visually stunning HD gaming experience running at up to 60 FPS or higher in the most popular AAA games, and up to 100 FPS in some of the most popular eSports titles .

Best Software Features for Gamers : AMD Radeon Software features game Day-0 driver support and up-to-the minute game optimizations for performance enhancements. Gamers can effortlessly capture, stream and share their memorable moments and clutch victories with Radeon ReLive technology; monitor performance and PC system info, and socialize with the AMD Link app; and fine-tune a range of settings to fit their needs with AMD Radeon WattMan technology .

Largest Gaming Display Ecosystem : With over 500 AMD Radeon FreeSync-capable monitors to choose from, achieving pixel-perfect, silky-smooth gameplay has never been easier. AMD Radeon FreeSync technology synchronizes the monitor update rate to the game, eliminating tears and choppiness. AMD Radeon FreeSync 2 HDR technology offers up to 2x better brightness and colour volume compared to sRGB .

Premium Virtual Reality : The AMD Radeon RX 590 graphics card delivers beautifully rich and immersive VR environments during gameplay. AMD LiquidVR technology provides broad compatibility, plug-and-play ease of use and stable platform support for the new wave of advanced VR vendors and technologies.

 

Up to 3 Free Games with Radeon RX Purchase!

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AMD also launched the ‘Raise the Game Fully Loaded’ bundle, offering gamers PC versions of the highly anticipated Resident Evil 2, Devil May Cry 5 and Tom Clancy’s The Division 2 for free with the purchase of an eligible AMD Radeon RX graphics card or Radeon RX powered PC.

Gamers who purchase an AMD Radeon RX Vega or RX 590, or an eligible Radeon RX Vega or RX 590 powered PC, will receive free copies of all three games. Gamers who purchase an AMD Radeon RX 580 or RX 570 graphics card, or an eligible Radeon RX 580 or RX 570 powered PC, can choose two of these games for free.

The AMD Radeon RX 590 graphics card is available worldwide for US$ 279 from leading add-in-board partners, including ASUS, PowerColor, Sapphire and XFX.

 

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The AMD Radeon Pro 500 Series for iMac Revealed!

SUNNYVALE, Calif. — June 05, 2017 — Today AMD (NASDAQ: AMD) unveiled the high-performance, power-efficient Radeon Pro 500 series graphics, fueling beyond-UHD creativity in All-In-One computing.

 

The AMD Radeon Pro 500 Series for iMac Revealed!

Available in the updated 21.5- and 27-inch iMac, Radeon Pro 500 series graphics enable extraordinary computing experiences, including stunning gaming, immersive VR on select models*, and fluid content creation with exceptional performance and support for GPU acceleration across a range of creative applications on the Mac platform, such as Adobe Premiere Pro, After Effects, and Photoshop and the Foundry Nuke, Mari and Moo.

Moreover, Radeon Pro 500 series provides accelerated performance for the Radeon ProRender photorealistic ray-tracing rendering technology which is enabled for Autodesk Maya, and Maxon’s Cinema 4D.

Radeon Pro 500 series graphics harness up to 5.5 TFLOPS of performance, unleashing the creativity of artists, designers, photographers, filmmakers, visualizers and engineers, and aspiring creative types across high-resolution canvases in the most popular creative applications, powering through the most demanding games, and bringing fantastic worlds to life in VR.

The Radeon Pro 500 series makes use of the critically-acclaimed “Polaris” GPU architecture, delivering the perfect balance of performance and operating efficiency that makes them ideal for All-In-Ones.

“It is incredibly satisfying to see the capabilities of Radeon Pro 500 series in elegant form factors and enabling amazing content creation, gaming and VR experiences,” said Raja Koduri, senior vice president and chief architect, Radeon Technologies Group, AMD. “Radeon Pro 500 Series graphics are enabling new generations of makers with compute-accelerated creative tools and new APIs, bringing their imaginations to life in ways like never before.”

*Available on the Radeon Pro 580.

 

The AMD Radeon Pro 500 Series Graphics Cards

Here are the AMD Radeon Pro 500 Series graphics cards, and their key specifications :

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  • AMD Radeon Pro 580
    5.5 TFLOPs peak performance
    36 compute units, with 2304 stream processors
    217 GB/s memory bandwidth
  • AMD Radeon Pro 575
    4.5 TFLOPs peak performance
    32 compute units, with 2048 stream processors
    217 GB/s memory bandwidth
  • AMD Radeon Pro 570
    3.6 TFLOPs peak performance
    36 compute units, with 2304 stream processors
    217 GB/s memory bandwidth
  • AMD Radeon Pro 560
    1.9 TFLOPs peak performance
    16 compute units, with 1024 stream processors
    81 GB/s memory bandwidth
  • AMD Radeon Pro 555
    1.3 TFLOPs peak performance
    12 compute units, with 768 stream processors
    81 GB/s memory bandwidth

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The Dell Computex 2017 Product Launch Coverage

The third major event at Computex Taipei 2017 was the Dell Computex 2017 product launch event. This year, Dell restricted themselves to only three new models, with a twist – they are all powered by an AMD processor!

So it was no surprise when AMD President & CEO Dr. Lisa Su came to lend her support for the new AMD-powered Dell computers. Check out what Dell has in store for the second half of 2017!

 

The Dell Computex 2017 Product Launch

That Dell would adopt the much-vaunted AMD Ryzen 7 processor is no surprise. Using it to power the new Dell Inspiron Gaming Desktop is only natural. What is surprising though is their decision to also use it to power the new Dell Inspiron 27 7000 AIO system!

Could you have imagined that an AIO system would not only boast an 8-core processor, but also a powerful AMD Radeon RX 500 series graphics card? That is an impressive engineering feat by both Dell and AMD engineers who worked together to create it.

If you are on a budget, Dell offers the Dell Inspiron 24 5000 AIO system. It too boasts a powerful AMD Radeon RX 500 series graphics card. We are perplexed though by Dell’s decision to go with the older 7th Generation AMD A-Series APU, instead of the new AMD Ryzen 5 processor.

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Our Earlier Posts On The Dell Computex 2017 Product Launch

At the Dell Computex 2017 press conference, Ray Mak showed off the first and only AIO powered by the AMD Ryzen 7 processor – the Dell Inspiron 27 7000.

Ray also showed off a smaller AMD A10-powered AIO model – the Dell Inspiron 24 5000.

AMD President & CEO Dr. Lisa Su even came up to talk about their partnership with Dell.

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The AMD Ryzen 5 & Radeon RX 500 Series Tech Briefing

The year 2017 is definitely The Year Of AMD Rising, with the launch of the AMD Ryzen 5 and Ryzen 7 processors and the forthcoming launch of AMD Radeon Vega. Even before the Radeon Vega arrives, AMD introduced the AMD Radeon RX 500 Series graphics cards.

You may have read our previous articles on AMD Ryzen processors, and the AMD Radeon RX 500 Series graphics cards. If not, check them out below : [adrotate group=”2″]

But in case you are not in the mood for so much reading, James Prior and Korhan Erenben from AMD are here to explain it all to you.

 

The AMD Ryzen 5 Processor Tech Briefing

In this video, James Prior, Product Manager for AMD Client Desktop, reveals the key features and benefits of the new AMD Ryzen 5 processors, as well as the AMD AM4 motherboard chipsets.

Here are the key takeaway points :

  • The new AMD Zen core delivers 52% more instructions per clock than the previous generation Excavator core.
  • The AMD Ryzen 7 processors took on the Intel Core i7 Kaby Lake processors, delivering better performance at much lower price points.
  • The AMD Ryzen 5 processors, similarly, deliver better performance at lower price points, than their Intel Core i5 Kaby Lake rivals.
  • Unlike Intel Core processors, every AMD Ryzen processor is multiplier-unlocked for overclocking flexibility.
  • All desktop (non-SFF) AMD AM4 chipsets and motherboards feature native USB 3.1 Gen 2 support.
  • The AMD Ryzen 3 series will arrive in 2H 2017.
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The AMD Radeon RX 500 Series Tech Briefing

In this video, Korhan Erenben, Channel Business Development Manager for AMD’s Radeon Technologies Group, explains the value proposition of the new Radeon RX 500 Series graphics cards.

Here are the key takeaway points :

  • Dubbed Polaris Evolved, the AMD Radeon RX 500 Series is targeted at gamers with older (pre-2016) graphics cards.
  • The Radeon RX 500 Series offers the latest 14 nm FinFET process technology, higher clock speeds, hardware H.265 encoding and decoding capability, as well as enhanced idle and multi-monitor efficiency through Radeon Chill and Radeon FreeSync.
  • Radeon Chill improves response times while reducing power consumption and thermal output of AMD Radeon graphics cards.
  • Radeon ReLive, that was introduced recently, is an end-to-end recording and streaming software supports all of the top streaming codecs.
  • Radeon ReLive is GPU-optimised and allows for smooth game streaming without stuttering.

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The 27 New AMD Radeon RX 500 Graphics Cards Revealed!

AMD just announced the new Radeon RX 500 Series graphics cards. Dubbed Polaris Refined, they run the same Polaris GPUs as the Radeon RX 480 graphics card. They basically offer higher clock speeds and/or additional Compute Units. There was one new model though – the entry-level Radeon RX 550.

In this article, we will share with you the first 27 Radeon RX 500 graphics cards to be introduced into the market. Check them out!

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The AORUS Radeon RX 500 Graphics Cards (4 Models)
– AORUS Radeon RX580 XTR 8G
– AORUS Radeon RX580 8GB
– AORUS Radeon RX580 4GB
– AORUS Radeon RX570

The ASUS Radeon RX 500 Graphics Cards (3 Models)
– ROG Strix Radeon RX 580 OC Edition
– ROG Strix Radeon RX 570 OC Edition
– ASUS Radeon RX 550

The GIGABYTE Radeon RX 500 Graphics Cards (5 Models)
– GIGABYTE Radeon RX 580 Gaming 8G
– GIGABYTE Radeon RX 580 Gaming 4G
– GIGABYTE Radeon RX 570 Gaming 4G
– GIGABYTE Radeon RX 550 Gaming OC 2G
– GIGABYTE Radeon RX 550

The MSI Radeon RX 500 Graphics Cards (4 Models)
– MSI Radeon RX 580 Gaming X+ 8G
– MSI Radeon RX 580 Gaming X 8G
– MSI Radeon RX 570 Gaming X 4G
– MSI Radeon RX 550 Aero ITX OC Edition

The PowerColor Radeon RX 500 Graphics Cards (4 Models)
– PowerColor Radeon Red Devil Golden Sample RX 580
– PowerColor Radeon Red Devil RX 580
– PowerColor Radeon Red Devil RX 570
– PowerColor Radeon Red Dragon RX 550

The Sapphire Radeon RX 500 Graphics Cards (6 Models)
– Sapphire Nitro+ Radeon RX 580 Limited Edition
– Sapphire Nitro+ Radeon RX 580
– Sapphire Nitro+ Radeon RX 570 8GB
– Sapphire Nitro+ Radeon RX 570 4GB
– Sapphire Pulse Radeon RX 550 4GB
– Sapphire Pulse Radeon RX 550 2GB

Be sure to also check out The AMD Radeon RX 500 Series Tech Report.

 

 

The AORUS Radeon RX 500 Graphics Cards

AORUS Radeon RX580 XTR 8G

The AORUS Radeon RX580 XTR 8G boasts the following features :

  • WINDFORCE 2X cooler with 100 mm blade fan design
  • Advanced copper back plate cooling
  • RGB Fusion – customisable LED lighting with 16.8 million colours
  • GPU core clock – 1425 MHz (gaming mode), 1439 MHz (overclock mode)

 

AORUS Radeon RX 580 8G

The AORUS Radeon RX580 8G boasts the following features :

  • WINDFORCE 2X cooler with 90 mm blade fan design
  • Advanced copper back plate cooling
  • RGB Fusion – customisable LED lighting with 16.8 million colours
  • GPU core clock – 1365 MHz (gaming mode), 1380 MHz (overclock mode)

 

AORUS Radeon RX 580 4GB

The AORUS Radeon RX580 4G boasts the following features :

  • WINDFORCE 2X cooler with 90 mm blade fan design
  • Advanced copper back plate cooling
  • RGB Fusion – customisable LED lighting with 16.8 million colours
  • GPU core clock – 1365 MHz (gaming mode), 1380 MHz (overclock mode)

 

AORUS Radeon RX 570

The AORUS Radeon RX570 boasts the following features :

  • WINDFORCE 2X cooler with 90 mm blade fan design
  • Advanced copper back plate cooling
  • RGB Fusion – customisable LED lighting with 16.8 million colours
  • GPU core clock – 1280 MHz (gaming mode), 1295 MHz (overclock mode)

Next Page > The ASUS & GIGABYTE RX 500 Graphics Cards

 

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The ASUS Radeon RX 500 Graphics Cards

ROG Strix Radeon RX 580 OC Edition

The ROG Strix Radeon RX 580 OC Edition from ASUS boasts the following features :

  • MaxContact Technology for 2x more contact area with the GPU for improved cooling
  • IP5X-certified Wing-Blade fans for better airflow and longer lifespan
  • ASUS Aura Sync RGB LED synchronisation
  • GPU core clock – 1360 MHz (gaming mode), 1380 MHz (overclock mode)

 

ROG Strix Radeon RX 570 OC Edition

The ROG Strix Radeon RX 570 OC Edition from ASUS boasts the following features :

  • DirectCU II heatsink with IP5X-certified Wing-Blade fans
  • ASUS Aura Sync RGB LED synchronisation
  • GPU core clock – 1300 MHz (gaming mode), 1310 MHz (overclock mode)

 

ASUS Radeon RX 550

The ASUS Radeon RX 550 boasts the following features :

  • IP5X-certified Wing-Blade fans for better airflow and longer lifespan

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The GIGABYTE Radeon RX 500 Graphics Cards

GIGABYTE Radeon RX 580 Gaming 8G

The GIGABYTE Radeon RX 580 Gaming 8G boasts the following features :

  • WINDFORCE 2X cooler with 90 mm blade fan design
  • RGB Fusion – customisable LED lighting with 16.8 million colours
  • GPU core clock – 1340 MHz (gaming mode), 1355 MHz (overclock mode)

 

GIGABYTE Radeon RX 580 Gaming 4G

The GIGABYTE Radeon RX 580 Gaming 4G boasts the following features :

  • WINDFORCE 2X cooler with 90 mm blade fan design
  • RGB Fusion – customisable LED lighting with 16.8 million colours
  • GPU core clock – 1340 MHz (gaming mode), 1355 MHz (overclock mode)

 

GIGABYTE Radeon RX 570 Gaming 4G

The GIGABYTE Radeon RX 570 Gaming 4G boasts the following features :

  • WINDFORCE 2X cooler with 90 mm blade fan design
  • RGB Fusion – customisable LED lighting with 16.8 million colours
  • GPU core clock – 1244 MHz (gaming mode), 1255 MHz (overclock mode)

 

GIGABYTE Radeon RX 550 Gaming OC 2G

The GIGABYTE Radeon RX 550 Gaming OC 2G boasts the following features :

  • WINDFORCE 2X cooler with 90 mm blade fan design

 

GIGABYTE Radeon RX 550

Next Page > The MSI & PowerColor Radeon RX 500 Graphics Cards

 

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The MSI Radeon RX 500 Graphics Cards

MSI Radeon RX 580 Gaming X+ 8G

The MSI Radeon RX 580 Gaming X+ 8G boasts the following features :

  • Twin Frozr VI cooler with Torx Fan 2.0
  • Customisable LED lighting with 16.8 million colours
  • GPU core clock – 1431 MHz (gaming mode), 1441 MHz (overclock mode)

 

MSI Radeon RX 580 Gaming X 8G

The MSI Radeon RX 580 Gaming X 8G boasts the following features :

  • Twin Frozr VI cooler with Torx Fan 2.0
  • Customisable LED lighting with 16.8 million colours
  • GPU core clock – 1380 MHz (gaming mode), 1393 MHz (overclock mode)

 

MSI Radeon RX 570 Gaming X 4G

The MSI Radeon RX 570 Gaming X 4G boasts the following features :

  • Twin Frozr VI cooler with Torx Fan 2.0
  • Customisable LED lighting with 16.8 million colours
  • GPU core clock – 1281 MHz (gaming mode), 1293 MHz (overclock mode)

 

MSI Radeon RX 550 Aero ITX OC Edition

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The PowerColor Radeon RX 500 Graphics Cards

PowerColor Radeon Red Devil Golden Sample RX 580

The PowerColor Radeon Red Devil Golden Sample RX 580 boasts the following features :

  • Multiple heatpipe cooler with Double Blade III fans
  • Black backplate and black PCB, with Digital PWM and BIOS switch
  • GPU core clock – up to 1425 MHz (overclock mode)

 

PowerColor Radeon Red Devil RX 580

The PowerColor Radeon Red Devil RX 580 boasts the following features :

  • Multiple heatpipe cooler with Double Blade III fans
  • Black backplate and black PCB, with Digital PWM and BIOS switch
  • GPU core clock – up to 1380 MHz (overclock mode)

 

PowerColor Radeon Red Devil RX 570

The PowerColor Radeon Red Devil RX 570 boasts the following features :

  • Multiple heatpipe cooler with Double Blade III fans
  • Black backplate and black PCB, with Digital PWM and BIOS switch
  • GPU core clock – up to 1320 MHz (overclock mode)

 

PowerColor Radeon Red Dragon RX 550

Next Page > The Sapphire Radeon RX 500 Graphics Cards

 

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The Sapphire Radeon RX 500 Graphics Cards

Sapphire Nitro+ Radeon RX 580 Limited Edition

The Sapphire Nitro+ Radeon RX 580 Limited Edition boasts the following features :

  • Dual-X Cooler with twin 95 mm fans
  • Nitro Glow – customisable RGB LED lighting
  • GPU core clock – up to 1450 MHz (overclock mode)

 

Sapphire Nitro+ Radeon RX 580

The Sapphire Nitro+ Radeon RX 580 boasts the following features :

  • Dual-X Cooler with twin 95 mm fans
  • Nitro Glow – customisable RGB LED lighting
  • GPU core clock – up to 1411 MHz (overclock mode)

 

Sapphire Nitro+ Radeon RX 570 8GB

The Sapphire Nitro+ Radeon RX 570 8GB boasts the following features :

  • Dual-X Cooler with twin 95 mm fans
  • Nitro Glow – customisable RGB LED lighting
  • GPU core clock – up to 1325 MHz (overclock mode)

 

Sapphire Nitro+ Radeon RX 570 4GB

The Sapphire Nitro+ Radeon RX 570 4GB boasts the following features :

  • Dual-X Cooler with twin 95 mm fans
  • Nitro Glow – customisable RGB LED lighting
  • GPU core clock – up to 1325 MHz (overclock mode)

 

Sapphire Pulse Radeon RX 550 4GB

 

Sapphire Pulse Radeon RX 550 2GB

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The AMD Radeon RX 500 Series Tech Report

Last week, Adam Kozak, Radeon Product Marketing Manager, flew in to brief us on the Polaris Refined graphics cards. In this tech report, we will share with you the details of the new AMD Radeon RX 500 Series graphics cards, as well as Adam’s full briefing. Enjoy!

If you are wondering why Joe Macri (in white) is here as well, check out his presentation on The Disruptive Nature of AMD Ryzen! 😀

Updated at 2017-04-19 : Added the SEP Pricing section.

Originally posted @ 2017-04-18

Be sure to also check out the 27 new AMD Radeon RX 500 graphics cards that is now available for sale!

 

The AMD Radeon RX 500 Series Tech Briefing

The AMD Radeon RX 500 Series is based on the same AMD Polaris architecture as the AMD Radeon RX 480. Here is Adam’s full presentation.

Here are the key takeaway points :

  • There will be four models – the Radeon RX 580, Radeon RX 570, Radeon RX 560 and the Radeon RX 550.

  • The Radeon RX 580 is a faster version of the Radeon RX 480, with a 137 MHz (12%) higher base clock, and a 74 MHz (6%) higher boost clock.
  • The Radeon RX 580 will be able to offer 60+ fps in most games running at 1440p, and 90+ fps in VR games.
  • The Radeon RX 570 is a faster version of the Radeon RX 470, with a 242 MHz (26%) higher base clock, and a 38 MHz (3%) higher boost clock.
  • The Radeon RX 570 will be able to offer 60+ fps in most games running at 1080p.
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  • The Radeon RX 560 has 2 additional Compute Units than the Radeon RX 460, a faster version of the Radeon RX 470, with a 85 MHz (8%) higher base clock, and a 75 MHz (6%) higher boost clock.
  • The Radeon RX 560 will be able to offer 60+ fps in most games running at 1080p.
  • The Radeon RX 550 will offer a new lower price point in the Radeon RX family.
  • The Radeon RX 550 will have up to 8 Compute Units, with a boost clock of up to 1183 MHz, and a 128-bit memory interface with 2 GB of GDDR5 memory.
  • All Radeon RX 500 Series graphics cards will support Radeon Chill, which saves power and reduces heat while improving response time.

Next Page > The Presentation Slides, What Happened To AMD Vega?

 

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The AMD Radeon RX 500 Series Presentation Slides

 

SEP Pricing

Here are the official SEP pricing by AMD. The prices of the actual cards, however, is dependent on the card brand :

  • AMD Radeon RX 580 – US$ 199
  • AMD Radeon RX 570 – US$ 169
  • AMD Radeon RX 560 – US$ 99
  • AMD Radeon RX 550 – US$ 79

 

What Happened To AMD Vega?

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We all know that the AMD Vega is coming in 2017. AMD briefed us on its GPU architecture, as well as its memory architecture. They also showed off an AMD Vega prototype running DOOM in 4K. So where the heck is it?

We gently prodded Adam who would only say that it’s “coming later” in 2017. With AMD introducing the Polaris Refined graphics cards in this new series, we think that they will most likely introduce the Vega-based graphics cards in late Q3, or early Q4 2017 to make it for 2017 Christmas sales.

In case you are wondering if AMD may have hit a snag with the Vega GPU, AMD is already using it in the AMD Radeon Instinct MI25 Vega accelerator. You can check out some Radeon Instinct servers using the Vega GPU.

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The Complete AMD Radeon Instinct Tech Briefing Rev. 3.0

The AMD Tech Summit held in Sonoma, California from December 7-9, 2016 was not only very exclusive, it was highly secretive. The first major announcement we have been allowed to reveal is the new AMD Radeon Instinct heterogenous computing platform.

In this article, you will hear from AMD what the Radeon Instinct platform is all about. As usual, we have a ton of videos from the event, so it will be as if you were there with us. Enjoy! 🙂

Originally published @ 2016-12-12

Updated @ 2017-01-11 : Two of the videos were edited to comply with the NDA. Now that the NDA on AMD Vega has been lifted, we replaced the two videos with their full, unedited versions. We also made other changes, including adding links to the other AMD Tech Summit articles.

Updated @ 2017-01-20 : Replaced an incorrect slide, and a video featuring that slide. Made other small updates to the article.

 

The AMD Radeon Instinct Platform Summarised

For those who want the quick low-down on AMD Radeon Instinct, here are the key takeaway points :

  • The AMD Radeon Instinct platform is made up of two components – hardware and software.
  • The hardware components are the AMD Radeon Instinct accelerators built around the current Polaris and the upcoming Vega GPUs.
  • The software component is the AMD Radeon Open Compute (ROCm) platform, which includes the new MIOpen open-source deep learning library.
  • The first three Radeon Instinct accelerator cards are the MI6, MI8 and MI25 Vega with NCU.
  • The AMD Radeon Instinct MI6 is a passively-cooled inference accelerator with 5.7 TFLOPS of FP16 processing power, 224 GB/s of memory bandwidth, and a TDP of <150 W. It will come with 16 GB of GDDR5 memory.
  • The AMD Radeon Instinct MI8 is a small form-factor (SFF) accelerator with 8.2 TFLOPS of processing power, 512 GB/s of memory bandwidth, and a TDP of <175 W. It will come with 4 GB of HBM memory.
  • The AMD Radeon Instinct MI25 Vega with NCU is a passively-cooled training accelerator with 25 TFLOPS of processing power, support for 2X packed math, a High Bandwidth Cache and Controller, and a TDP of <300 W.
  • The Radeon Instinct accelerators will all be built exclusively by AMD.
  • The Radeon Instinct accelerators will all support MxGPU SRIOV hardware virtualisation.
  • The Radeon Instinct accelerators are all passively cooled.
  • The Radeon Instinct accelerators will all have large BAR (Base Address Register) support for multiple GPUs.
  • The upcoming AMD Zen “Naples” server platform is designed to supported multiple Radeon Instinct accelerators through a high-speed network fabric.
  • The ROCm platform is not only open source, it will support a multitude of standards in addition to MIOpen.
  • The MIOpen deep learning library is open source, and will be available in Q1 2017.
  • The MIOpen deep learning library is optimised for Radeon Instinct, allowing for 3X better performance in machine learning.
  • AMD Radeon Instinct accelerators will be significantly faster than NVIDIA Titan X GPUs based on the Maxwell and Pascal architectures.

In the subsequent pages, we will give you the full low-down on the Radeon Instinct platform, with the following presentations by AMD :

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We also prepared the complete video and slides of the Radeon Instinct tech briefing for your perusal :

Next Page > Heterogenous Computing, The Radeon Instinct Accelerators, MIOpen, Performance

 

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Why Is Heterogenous Computing Important?

Dr. Lisa Su, kicked things off with an inside look at her two-year long journey as AMD President and CEO. Then she revealed why Heterogenous Computing is an important part of AMD’s future going forward. She also mentioned the success of the recently-released Radeon Software Crimson ReLive Edition.

 

Here Are The New AMD Radeon Instinct Accelerators!

Next, Raja Koduri, Senior Vice President and Chief Architect of the Radeon Technologies Group, officially revealed the new AMD Radeon Instinct accelerators.

 

The MIOpen Deep Learning Library For Radeon Instinct

MIOpen is a new deep learning library optimised for Radeon Instinct. It is open source and will become part of the Radeon Open Compute (ROCm) platform. It will be available in Q1 2017.

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The Performance Advantage Of Radeon Instinct & MIOpen

MIOpen is optimised for Radeon Instinct, offering 3X better performance in machine learning. It allows the Radeon Instinct accelerators to be significantly faster than NVIDIA Titan X GPUs based on the Maxwell and Pascal architectures.

Next Page > Radeon Instinct MI25 & MI8 Demos, Zen “Naples” Platform, The First Servers, ROCm Discussion

 

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The Radeon Instinct MI25 Training Demonstration

Raja Koduri roped in Ben Sander, Senior Fellow at AMD, to show off the Radeon Instinct MI25 running a training demo.

 

The Radeon Instinct MI8 Visual Inference Demonstration

The visual inference demo is probably much easier to grasp, as it is visual in nature. AMD used the Radeon Instinct MI8 in this example.

 

The Radeon Instinct On The Zen “Naples” Platform

The upcoming AMD Zen “Naples” server platform is designed to supported multiple AMD Radeon Instinct accelerators through a high-speed network fabric.

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The First Radeon Instinct Servers

This is not a vapourware launch. Raja Koduri revealed the first slew of Radeon Instinct servers that will hit the market in H1 2017.

 

The Radeon Open Compute (ROCm) Platform Discussion

To illustrate the importance of heterogenous computing on Radeon Instinct, Greg Stoner (ROCm Senior Director at AMD), hosted a panel of AMD partners and early adopters in using the Radeon Open Compute (ROCm) platform.

Next Page > Closing Remarks On Radeon Instinct, The Complete Radeon Instinct Tech Briefing Video & Slides

 

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Closing Remarks On Radeon Instinct

Finally, Raja Koduri concluded the launch of the Radeon Instinct Initiative with some closing remarks on the recent Radeon Software Crimson ReLive Edition.

 

The Complete AMD Radeon Instinct Tech Briefing

This is the complete AMD Radeon Instinct tech briefing. Our earlier video was edited to comply with the AMD Vega NDA (which has now expired).

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The Complete AMD Radeon Instinct Tech Briefing Slides

Here are the Radeon Instinct presentation slides for your perusal.

 

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The AMD Radeon Software Crimson ReLive Edition Revealed!

Last week, we were invited to a tech briefing by AMD’s Radeon Technologies Group on the latest evolution of the Radeon Software driver – the Radeon Software Crimson ReLive Edition. Today, we are finally allowed to reveal details of that major driver update. Check it out!

 

The Radeon Software Crimson ReLive Edition Tech Briefing

The tech briefing on the Radeon Software Crimson Edition ReLive Edition was conducted by Terry Makedon, Sasa Marinkovic and Glen Matthews from the RTG team, with Garrath Johnson (RTG Communications Lead for APJ) hosting.

We prepared a special presentation so you can enjoy the same briefing we received. It was a really long tech briefing, because the Radeon Technologies Group not only improved its performance and stability, they also added a ton of new features!

The tech briefing actually ran a whole hour, but we edited it to just under 47 minutes for brevity. The content remain unchanged, so you’re not missing out on anything important.

 

New Features In Radeon Software Crimson ReLive Edition

Radeon ReLive : Capture, stream and share your greatest moments and gaming wins on your computer system with Radeon ReLive. Modify settings quickly, conveniently, and play seamlessly with the easily accessible in-game toolbar. Express yourself in bold new ways with custom scene layouts. Upload your latest highlights and let them be a conversation piece. It’s never been easier to build and grow your online community at anytime, anywhere.

Radeon Chill : A power-saving feature that dynamically regulates frame rate based on your in-game movements. Radeon Chill can improve power efficiency and can lower temperatures for supported products and games when enabled through Radeon Settings.

Radeon WattMan : Added support for AMD Radeon R9 Fury series, R9 390 series, R9 380 series, R9 290 series, R9 285, R9 260 series, R7 360, and R7 260 desktop graphics products.

Radeon Software Installer : New user interface and intuitive Radeon Software Installer that includes options for express install, custom install and clean uninstall. The new installer will also show options for the latest available driver for your system configuration during the install process.

Display Connectivity : New advanced display settings and diagnostics page within Radeon Settings with better detection for HDMI cable issues and fallback for end users experiencing display issues.

AMD FreeSync Technology : Now supports Borderless Fullscreen Mode for applications and gaming with AMD FreeSync technology displays and supported products. Now supports Gradual Refresh Rate Ramp for mobile configurations with AMD FreeSync technology displays and supported products.

Upgrade Advisor : Provides a system requirement evaluation for Steam games in your Radeon Settings library.

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HDR Gaming Support : Experience the benefits of HDR gaming with Radeon Software Crimson ReLive Edition. Support for games with HDR 10 or Dolby Vision capabilities.

VP9 Decode Acceleration : 4K 60Hz GPU-Accelerated Video Streaming enabled on supported Google Chrome web browsers.

Skype Performance Enhancements : Lower CPU usage during Skype calls for select AMD APU Family products.

User Feedback Page : The User Feedback Page enables a direct link for end users to the Radeon Software Team and allows users to provide feedback and vote on upcoming features for Radeon Software.

 

Availability

The new Radeon Software Crimson ReLive Edition begins with version 16.12.1, and is available right now at this link.

 

The Radeon Software Crimson ReLive Edition Slides (Part 1 of 3)

For those who want to study the intricacies of the new Radeon Software Crimson ReLive Edition, here are the 75 slides for your perusal. Enjoy! 😀

Next Page > The Radeon Software Crimson ReLive Edition Slides (Part 2)

 

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The Radeon Software Crimson ReLive Edition Slides (Part 2 of 3)

Next Page > The Radeon Software Crimson ReLive Edition Slides (Part 3)

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The Radeon Software Crimson ReLive Edition Slides (Part 3 of 3)

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Deus Ex Mankind Divided DirectX12 Patch Released

Eidos-Montreal and Square Enix have announced their official Deus Ex Mankind Divided DirectX 12 patch, scaling performance to a whole new level with DirectX 12 multi-GPU and frame pacing support on Radeon graphics.

This Deus Ex Mankind Divided DirectX 12 patch enables advanced DirectX 12 features and enhanced performance with support for :

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Asynchronous shaders

  • Asynchronous Compute Engines in AMD’s GCN and Polaris architectures can submit commands without waiting for other tasks to complete.
  • Delivers vastly improved GPU efficiency, boosting graphics processing performance, reducing latency and enabling consistent frame rates.

Enhanced multi-GPU experience

  • AMD’s GCN and Polaris architectures lead with greater performance and scalability in multi-GPU DirectX 12.
  • Gamers will benefit from up to 100 percent faster performance using Radeon Software Crimson Edition driver 16.10.2 running Deus Ex: Mankind Divided on 8GB Radeon RX 480 multi-GPU1 in DirectX 12.
  • The 4GB Radeon RX 470 also offers up to 100 percent faster multi-GPU performance in DirectX 12 in Deus Ex than with the 4GB Radeon RX 470 single-GPU.2

DirectX 12 Frame Pacing

  • AMD’s support of multi-GPU DirectX 12 Frame Pacing enables smooth gameplay on Radeon Graphics by evenly distributing frame times and providing them at a more consistent rate, delivering an exceptional gaming experience.

 

Deus EX Mankind Divided

Deus Ex Mankind Divided is the sequel to the critically acclaimed Deus Ex Human Revolution and builds on the franchise’s trademark choice and consequence, plus action-RPG based gameplay, to create both a memorable and highly immersive experience.

Players will once again take on the role of Adam Jensen, now an experienced covert agent, and will gain access to his new arsenal of customizable state-of-the-art weapons and augmentations. With time working against him, Adam must choose the right approach, along with who to trust, in order to unravel a vast worldwide conspiracy.

 

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AMD Radeon Pro 400 Series Graphics MacBook Unveiled

Sunnyvale, California – 27 October 2016 — Today AMD unveiled a new  family of power-efficient graphics processors, Radeon Pro 400 Series Graphics. Available first in the all-new 15-inch MacBook Pro, select Radeon Pro 400 Series graphics deliver extraordinary performance and efficiency gains over the prior generation to fuel modern creative efforts from anywhere inspiration strikes.

 

Radeon Pro 400 Series Graphic

Radeon Pro 400 Series Graphics are designed specifically for today’s makers – the artists, designers, photographers, filmmakers, visualizers and engineers that shape the modern content creation era. Harnessing AMD’s acclaimed Polaris architecture, Radeon Pro 400 Series Graphics are built on the industry’s most advanced process technology for graphics processors in production today, 14nm FinFET, resulting in incredibly small transistors.

To enable the thinnest graphics processor possible, AMD also employs a complex process known as ‘die thinning’ to reduce the thickness of each wafer of silicon used in the processor from 780 microns to just 380 microns, or slightly less than the thickness of four pieces of paper. Operating in a power envelope under 35W, the Radeon Pro 450, 455, and 460 Series graphics processors deliver spectacular energy efficiency and cool, quiet operation to speed through the most demanding tasks in popular creative applications.

“We couldn’t be more proud to have Radeon Pro 400 Series Graphics launching in the new 15-inch MacBook Pro, a notebook designed for performance and creativity,” said Raja Koduri, senior vice president and chief architect, Radeon Technologies Group, AMD. “Today there are millions of professional creators and designers, and a billion more who aspire to reach the next level. Radeon Pro 400 Series Graphics are a powerful and versatile creative technology that gives makers entirely new ways to create the art of the impossible no matter where they are.”

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To celebrate the people behind the products, and the passion shared by makers of all sorts, AMD is launching a new program called “Meet the Creators,” bringing creators together and inviting them to share their work. Creators will have the opportunity to collaborate across a variety of fields, learn about new tools and techniques for their respective crafts, and have a chance to be featured in Radeon Pro promotional campaigns.

The “Meet the Creators” program will also explore how Radeon Pro graphics play a role in the creative process, from harnessing extraordinary graphics performance in today’s popular 2D and 3D creative applications, to using modern low-overhead graphics and compute APIs to accelerate rendering in today’s workflows.

A part of that workflow is Radeon ProRender, AMD’s physically-based rendering engine planned for open source later this year, and supported via plugins across many popular 3D content creation applications including Autodesk Maya, and a beta plugin for Rhino. Bolstering the list of supported applications, AMD and Maxon announced today that Radeon ProRender software will be available in a future release of

Maxon’s powerful and intuitive Cinema 4D application for 3D modeling, animation and rendering, providing GPU-accelerated performance on Mac by leveraging Radeon Pro graphics and Apple’s Metal API.

Go Back To > Computer Hardware & Systems | Home

 

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AMD Radeon RX 470 & RX 460 Price Cuts Announced!

Ahead of the global availability of the NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1050 and GeForce GTX 1050 Ti graphics cards, AMD pre-emptively slashed US$10 off the Radeon RX 470 and Radeon RX 460 graphics cards. Here are the full details of the AMD Radeon RX 470 and RX 460 price cuts…

 

Radeon RX 470 & RX 460 Price Cuts

The AMD Radeon RX 470 will be available for as low as US$169 starting October 23, 2016. This is US$10 down from its launch price of US$179. This narrows its price premium over the GeForce GTX 1050 Ti (launch price of US$139) down to US$40.

The AMD Radeon RX 460 will be available for as low as US$99 starting October 23, 2016. This is US$10 down from its launch price of US$109. This puts it head-to-head against the GeForce GTX 1050, albeit with twice as much memory – 4 GB.

 

The AMD Advantage

AMD also made it known that they are offering more than just the Radeon RX 470 and RX 460 price cuts.

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  • All Radeon RX graphics cards are optimized for DX12 and Vulkan.
  • Asynchronous Compute, exclusively supported by the GCN or Polaris architectures, breaks up complex game workloads into smaller tasks that can run more quickly in parallel, extracting “free” performance from the GPU
  • AMD’s open source FreeSync technology is the industry’s choice for Adaptive Frame Synchronization, offering smooth, affordable gaming with support for HDMI and DisplayPort technology.
  • FreeSync monitors are significantly more accessible – starting at US$129 compared with US$379 for G-Sync – and with 126 FreeSync monitors available compared with only 86 G-Sync monitors, Radeon users have more choice

 

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The XFX Radeon RX 470 RS Black Edition Review

AMD launched their Polaris GPU architecture to great fanfare with the introduction of the Radeon RX 480. It offered an affordable 1440p gaming alternative to the NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1070. The AMD Radeon RX 470 was released later, offering 1080p gaming performance at even lower cost and power consumption.

Today, we are going to take a look at the XFX Radeon RX 470 RS Black Edition (RX-470P4LDB6) graphics card.  This is no ordinary Radeon RX 470 graphics card. It is factory-overclocked and boasts a really unique cooler. Check it out!

 

The XFX Radeon RX 470 RS Black Edition Specification Comparison

How does the XFX Radeon RX 470 RS Black Edition compare against a standard AMD Radeon RX 470 graphics card? Take a look!

SpecificationsStandard AMD Radeon RX 470XFX Radeon RX 470 RS Black EditionDifference
Stream Processors20482048-
Texture Units128128-
ROPs3232-
GPU Clock Speed926 MHz base clock
1206 MHz boost clock
1256 MHz+ 4% to +35.6%
Texture Fill Rate118 to 154 GT/s160 GT/s+ 4% to +35.6%
Pixel Fill Rate30 to 39 GP/s40 GP/s+ 4% to +35.6%
Memory Bus Width256-bits256-bits-
Graphics Memory4 GB GDDR54 GB GDDR5-
Memory Clock Speed1650 MHz1750 MHz+ 6%
Memory Bandwidth211 GB/s224 GB/s+ 6%
TDP120 WNot stated (between 120 - 150 W)-
Cooling SolutionDual slot cooler with single fanXFX Ghost 4.0 coolerBetter cooling

For more specifications, please take a look at our Desktop Graphics Card Comparison Guide.

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Unboxing The XFX Radeon RX 470 RS Black Edition

Here is our unboxing video of the XFX Radeon RX 470 RS Black Edition graphics card. This is exactly what you can expect if you purchase one.

The XFX Radeon RX 470 RS Black Edition graphics card comes in an overly large cardboard box. Inside, you will only find the XFX Radeon RX 470 RS Black Edition graphics card, a combined installation guide and warranty card leaflet, a driver CD and a 4-pin to 6-pin power adaptor.

 

The XFX Radeon RX 470 RS Black Edition Overview

In this video, we are going to take a quick look at the XFX Radeon RX 470 RS Black Edition graphics card, and its unique Ghost 4.0 cooler.

Next Page > XFX Radeon RX 470 RS Black Edition Up Close, Ghost 4.0 Cooler

 

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The XFX Radeon RX 470 RS Black Edition Up Close

The XFX Radeon RX 470 RS Black Edition is a large card – the same size as the AMD Radeon RX 480. The shroud of the XFX Ghost 4.0 cooler extends a little over the card itself, to accommodate the two large 85mm fans. The back is protected and stiffened by a solid aluminium backplate, which also serves as a secondary heatsink.

The XFX logo is etched into the backplate, with a white XFX logo on the top of the shroud. However, case modders should note that it does not have any LED lighting – the XFX logo will not light up when the card is powered up. The third XFX logo can be found as part of the exhaust vent, next to the DVI port.

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The XFX Ghost 4.0 Cooler

The XFX Ghost 4.0 cooler is, arguably, the highlight of this model. It features a unibody heatsink, with composite heatpipes. The unibody design improves its ability to cool the VRM and GDDR5 memory modules by 40%, while reducing fan noise by 5%.

The composite heatpipe design, on the other hand, combines the liquid and capillary action heatpipe in a single pipe. This increases the total heatpipe surface area by 30%, which greatly improves its ability to quickly transfer heat.

The other cool thing about the XFX Ghost 4.0 cooler are its two 85 mm fans, pun intended. With a power output of 4.2 W, two of these FirstD FDC10H12S9-C fans can push a considerable amount of air through the heatsink. But what’s really cool are its patented hard-swap design, and its load-sensing technology.

The hard swap design allows for easy detachment and installation of the two fans. They are locked in place by just two clips. You can swap them out for more powerful fans, or even fans with LED lights. It also allows you to easily remove them to clean the blades or even the heatsink fins underneath. Very useful!

The other cool feature is the fans’ auto load-sensing capability. They will automatically adjust their speed according to the workload. During light loads (watching videos, using office applications), the XFX Radeon RX 470 RS Black Edition runs cool enough that both fans do not spin at all, giving you absolute silence. But when you start gaming, the fans start up and increase their speed to meet the demand automatically.

Next Page > Benchmarking Notes, Cooling Performance, Noise Level

 

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Benchmarking Notes

Our graphics benchmarking test bed has the following specifications :

Operating System : Microsoft Windows 10 64-bit

Processor : Intel Core i7 6700K processor running at 4.0 GHz

Motherboard : ASRock Z170 Extreme4

Memory : 8 GB DDR4-2133 memory (dual-channel)

Storage : 240 GB HyperX Savage SSD

Monitor : Dell P2415Q Ultra HD Monitor

We used the GeForce driver version 372.54 for all three NVIDIA graphics cards, and the Radeon Software 16.8.2 driver for the three AMD graphics cards used in our tests.

 

The XFX Radeon RX 470 RS Black Edition Cooling Performance

The AMD Radeon RX 470 uses the AMD Polaris 10 GPU, which is fabricated on the 14 nm FinFET process. The smaller process technology allows AMD to run the Radeon RX 470 GPU at 1.2 GHz with a TDP of just 120 W. This allows for a much cooler card, and hopefully, better overclocking potential.

With its Ghost 4.0 cooler, the XFX Radeon RX 470 RS Black Edition should deliver significantly better cooling performance than the stock Radeon RX 470 card. While we don’t have one at hand, we do have a number of other AMD and NVIDIA cards. Take a look at their peak exhaust temperature (as measured at their exhaust vents).

Note that these are not the recorded temperatures, but how much hotter the exhaust air is above ambient temperature.

The XFX Radeon RX 470 RS Black Edition is a surprisingly cool-running card, producing much cooler exhaust air than the Radeon RX 480, or the GeForce GTX 1060. There is a reason for this though, which we will examine in the next section…

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The XFX Radeon RX 470 RS Black Edition Noise Level

We recorded the XFX Radeon RX 470 RS Black Edition as it was running the 3DMark Fire Strike Ultra benchmark for the third time.

As you can hear, the two fans do produce a considerable amount of noise. That is the secret (and downside) to its significantly better cooling performance. Of course, this is an open testbed, so the noise will be muted in an enclosed chassis.

Next Page > 3DMark DirectX 12 & Direct 11 Benchmark Results

 

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3DMark DirectX 12 Benchmark (2560 x 1440)

3DMark Time Spy is a new DirectX 12 benchmark that supports new API features like asynchronous compute, explicit multi-adapter, and multi-threading.

The XFX Radeon RX 470 RS Black Edition is about 35% faster than the Radeon R9 380 – amazing performance for a card that costs just US$ 219. In fact, it is just 8% slower than the AMD Radeon RX 480 (8 GB), and 12% slower than the NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1060!

 

3DMark (1920 x 1080)

For Direct 11 performance, we started testing the graphics cards using 3DMark at the most common gaming resolution – 1920 x 1080.

The XFX Radeon RX 470 RS Black Edition was 40% faster than the Radeon R9 380. That puts it just 7% slower than the Radeon RX 480 (8 GB).

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3DMark (2560 x 1440)

Then we took 3DMark up a notch to the resolution of 2560 x 1440. Let’s take a look!

At this resolution, the extra memory of the Radeon RX 480 (8 GB) starts to pay off. It was now 13% faster than the XFX Radeon RX 470 RS Black Edition, which only has 4 GB of GDDR5 memory.

 

3DMark (3840 x 2160)

This is torture, even for the GeForce GTX 980 Ti and the GeForce GTX 1070!

The XFX Radeon RX 470 RS Black Edition was now 16% slower than the Radeon RX 480 (8 GB). Not that it matters. The frame rates are completely unplayable for all cards at this resolution.

Next Page > Ashes of the Singularity & Warhammer Benchmark Results

 

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Ashes of the Singularity (1920 x 1080)

We tested Ashes of the Singularity in the DirectX 12 mode, which supports the new Asynchronous Compute feature. We started with the full HD resolution.

The XFX Radeon RX 470 RS Black Edition did very well in this test, virtually tying with the Radeon RX 480 (8 GB) and GeForce GTX 1060!

 

Ashes of the Singularity (2560 x 1440)

We then took Ashes of the Singularity up a notch to the resolution of 2560 x 1440. Let’s see how the cards fare…

Again, the XFX Radeon RX 470 RS Black Edition did very well. It tied the Radeon RX 480 (8 GB) and GeForce GTX 1060.

 

Ashes of the Singularity (3840 x 2160)

Finally, let’s see how the cards perform with Ashes of the Singularity running at the Ultra HD resolution of 3840 x 2160.

Surprisingly, the XFX Radeon RX 470 RS Black Edition continued to match the Radeon RX 480 (8 GB) and the GeForce GTX 1060 in performance. It was actually able to deliver playable frame rates even at such a high resolution.

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Warhammer (1920 x 1080)

This chart shows you the minimum and maximum frame rates, as well as the average frame rate, recorded by Total War : Warhammer‘s internal DirectX 12 benchmark.

The XFX Radeon RX 470 RS Black Edition delivered frame rates in excess of 60 fps. It actually tied the GeForce GTX 1060 in performance, and came in just 7% slower than the Radeon RX 480 (8 GB).

 

Warhammer (2560 x 1440)

This chart shows you the minimum and maximum frame rates, as well as the average frame rate, recorded by Total War : Warhammer‘s internal DirectX 12 benchmark.

At this higher resolution, the XFX Radeon RX 470 RS Black Edition slipped under 50 fps. Still pretty decent performance. It was now 4% slower than the GeForce GTX 1060, and 8% slower than the Radeon RX 480 (8 GB).

 

Warhammer (3840 x 2160)

This chart shows you the minimum and maximum frame rates, as well as the average frame rate, recorded by Total War : Warhammer‘s internal DirectX 12 benchmark.

The Ultra HD resolution proved too much for most cards. Only the GeForce GTX 1070 and the GeForce GTX 980 Ti delivered playable frame rates. The XFX Radeon RX 470 RS Black Edition was now 9% slower than the Radeon RX 480 (8 GB), and 11% slower than the GeForce GTX 1060.

Next Page > The Witcher 3 & Fallout 4 Benchmark Results

 

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The Witcher 3 (1920 x 1080)

This chart shows you the minimum and maximum frame rates, as well as the average frame rate, that FRAPS recorded in The Witcher 3.

The XFX Radeon RX 470 RS Black Edition performed well at this resolution, delivering an average frame rate of 60 fps. That made it 9% slower than the Radeon RX 480 (8 GB), and 14% slower than the GeForce GTX 1060.

 

The Witcher 3 (2560 x 1440)

This chart shows you the minimum and maximum frame rates, as well as the average frame rate, that FRAPS recorded in The Witcher 3.

When the resolution increased to 1440p, all cards took a massive hit in frame rate. Only the GeForce GTX 1070 and the GeForce GTX 980 Ti delivered average frame rates above 60 fps.

The XFX Radeon RX 470 RS Black Edition had a playable average frame rate of 41 fps. It remained 9% slower than the Radeon RX 480 (8 GB), and 14% slower than the GeForce GTX 1060.

 

The Witcher 3 (3840 x 2160)

This chart shows you the minimum and maximum frame rates, as well as the average frame rate, that FRAPS recorded in The Witcher 3.

The Ultra HD resolution is a real torture, even humbling the GeForce GTX 1070 and the GeForce GTX 980 Ti.

The XFX Radeon RX 470 RS Black Edition remained 9% slower than the Radeon RX 480 (8 GB), but was now 16% slower than the GeForce GTX 1060.

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Fallout 4 (1920 x 1080)

This chart shows you the minimum and maximum frame rates, as well as the average frame rate, that FRAPS recorded in Fallout 4.

Fallout 4 is a relatively “easy” for most graphics cards at the resolution of 1920 x 1080. The XFX Radeon RX 470 RS Black Edition had no problem delivering an average frame rate of 78 fps. That makes it just 4% slower than the Radeon RX 480 (8 GB), but 17% slower than the GeForce GTX 1060.

 

Fallout 4 (2560 x 1440)

This chart shows you the minimum and maximum frame rates, as well as the average frame rate, that FRAPS recorded in Fallout 4.

When we took the resolution to the next level though, it really cut down on frame rates. The XFX Radeon RX 470 RS Black Edition‘s average frame rate of 56 fps still very good, being 27% faster than the Radeon R9 380. However, it was now 8% slower than the Radeon RX 480 (8 GB), but 19% slower than the GeForce GTX 1060.

 

Fallout 4 (3840 x 2160)

This chart shows you the minimum and maximum frame rates, as well as the average frame rate, that FRAPS recorded in Fallout 4.

The 4K resolution really taxed the cards. Even the GeForce GTX 1070 could not deliver an average frame rate of 60 fps.

The XFX Radeon RX 470 RS Black Edition only managed an average frame rate of 31 fps. That made it 7% slower than the Radeon RX 480 (8 GB), but 18% slower than the GeForce GTX 1060.

Next Page > Our Verdict, Specifications & Lowest Price

 

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Our Verdict

The AMD Radeon RX 470 was always meant for 1080p gaming, but XFX managed to take it one step further with the XFX Radeon RX 470 RS Black Edition. Thanks to the factory-overclocking of the GPU and the GDDR5 memory, it offers performance close to that of the AMD Radeon RX 480.

In our real world benchmarks, the XFX Radeon RX 470 RS Black Edition was proven to be capable of delivering good frame rates even at 2560 x 1440. 1440p gaming is now possible with the Radeon RX 470!

Of course, the extra performance comes at a cost. The XFX Radeon RX 470 RS Black Edition has a launch price of US$219. That’s a US$40 premium over a standard Radeon RX 470, and a US$20 premium over a 4GB Radeon RX 480.

What you get in return is a well-made, factory-overclocked Radeon RX 470 card, with a powerful load-sensing cooler and a solid aluminium backplate. The hard-swappable fans are also a nice touch, allowing for very easy upgrades, replacement and maintenance.

Of course, you may just decide to skip these niceties and top up another US$10 for an 8GB Radeon RX 480. That will buy you a slightly faster card, with more overclocking potential.

SpecificationsStandard AMD Radeon RX 470XFX Radeon RX 470 RS Black EditionDifference
Stream Processors20482048-
Texture Units128128-
ROPs3232-
GPU Clock Speed926 MHz base clock
1206 MHz boost clock
1256 MHz+ 4% to +35.6%
Texture Fill Rate118 to 154 GT/s160 GT/s+ 4% to +35.6%
Pixel Fill Rate30 to 39 GP/s40 GP/s+ 4% to +35.6%
Memory Bus Width256-bits256-bits-
Graphics Memory4 GB GDDR54 GB GDDR5-
Memory Clock Speed1650 MHz1750 MHz+ 6%
Memory Bandwidth211 GB/s224 GB/s+ 6%
TDP120 WNot stated (between 120 - 150 W)-
Cooling SolutionDual slot cooler with single fanXFX Ghost 4.0 coolerBetter cooling

For more specifications, please take a look at our Desktop Graphics Card Comparison Guide.

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The Radeon Technologies Group’s First Year Achievements

On September 9, 2015, AMD spliced off their Radeon graphics team into a separate Radeon Technologies Group. They also promoted Raja Koduri to Senior Vice President and Chief Architect of the new Radeon Technologies Group, reporting directly to AMD President and CEO Dr. Lisa Su.

It has now been a year since Raja Koduri took the helm of the newly-formed Radeon Technologies Group. Chris Hook, Senior Director of Global Marketing and Public Relations, Radeon Technologies Group, gave us a run-down of what the Radeon Technologies Group accomplished in just 12 months.

Then Raja Koduri, Senior Vice President and Chief Architect, Radeon Technologies Group, gave us a 40 minute Q&A session – a rare opportunity as you can imagine. Check out the full Q&A session below!

Now, join us for a quick tour of their achievements in the first year! If you would like to peruse the slides from the presentation, you can check them out here. [adrotate banner=”5″]

 

The First Year Of The Radeon Technologies Group

Right after its formation, the Radeon Technologies Group dove straight into the melee, delivering the Radeon Software Crimson Edition in November 2015, and then launching GPUOpen in December 2015.

 

Then in March 2016, they released their first Vulkan-capable driver. They followed that up with the launch of the AMD Radeon Pro Duo graphics card.

Their efforts culminated in the AMD Polaris launch during Computex 2016.

A month later, they launched the AMD Radeon Pro family, featuring the Radeon Pro WX series and the Radeon Pro SSG.

Finally, AMD announced in August that the AMD FreeSync technology is now available in just over 100 gaming monitors.

Next Page > The Radeon Technologies Group First Anniversary Presentation Slides

 

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Here are the presentation slides used by Chris Hook, Senior Director of Global Marketing and Public Relations, Radeon Technologies Group, during his presentation :

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ASUS Republic of Gamers Announces Strix RX 470

10 August 2016ASUS Republic of Gamers (ROG) today announced Strix RX 470, an all-new gaming graphics card with ultra-fast performance, advanced cooling and reliability, and personalized styling. Powered by the latest AMD Radeon RX 470 graphics processing unit (GPU), clocked at 1270MHz in OC mode, ROG Strix RX 470 delivers up to 23%-faster performance than R9 380 reference cards in 3DMark Fire Strike Extreme and 25%-faster gaming performance in Hitman.

ROG Strix RX 470 is packed with exclusive ASUS technologies, including DirectCU II with a patented dual wing-blade 0dB fan designed to deliver maximum airflow for 30%-cooler and three-times (3X) quieter performance, and ASUS FanConnect, which features a GPU-controlled fan header to connect to a system fan for targeted supplemental cooling. Industry-exclusive Auto-Extreme technology with Super Alloy Power II components ensures premium quality and reliability.

ROG Strix RX 470 enables complete gaming system personalization with the Aura RGB lighting system and customizable color decals. It also includes GPU Tweak II with XSplit Gamecaster for intuitive performance tweaking and instant gameplay streaming.

 

ASUS ROG Strix RX 470 Features

Ultimate cooling: DirectCU II technology with patented wing-blade fans and ASUS FanConnect

ROG Strix RX 470 is equipped with ASUS DirectCU II cooling technology, which features direct-GPU-contact heatpipes that transport more heat away from the GPU, outperforming reference designs and achieving up to 30% cooler gaming performance. DirectCU II technology includes dual 0dB fans, engineered with a patented wing-blade design that delivers maximum airflow and improves static pressure over the heatsink by 105%, while operating at three-times (3X) quieter volume than reference cards.

ROG Strix RX 470 also comes with ASUS FanConnect technology. When gaming, the GPU often runs hotter than the CPU, but chassis fans usually only reference CPU temperatures, resulting in inefficient system cooling. ASUS FanConnect solves this issue with a four-pin GPU-controlled header that can be connected to a system fan to provide targeted supplemental cooling for optimal thermal performance.

Premium quality and reliability: Auto-Extreme technology with Super Alloy Power II components

All ASUS graphics cards are now produced using Auto-Extreme technology, an industry-exclusive, 100%-automated production process that incorporates premium materials to set a new standard of quality. Auto-Extreme technology ensures consistent graphics card quality as well as improved performance and longevity. This new manufacturing process is also environmentally friendly, eliminating harsh chemicals and reducing power consumption by 50%.

Super Alloy Power II components enhance efficiency, reduce power loss, reduce component buzzing by 50% while under full load, and achieve thermal levels that are approximately 50% cooler than previous designs for enhanced quality and reliability.

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Game your way: Aura RGB Lighting and customizable color decals

ROG Strix RX 470 includes Aura — the exclusive RGB lighting technology invented by ASUS — on its shroud. This stunning illumination technology is capable of displaying millions of colors and six different effects for a totally personalized gaming system. A set of orange color decals is also included, so gamers can further customize their ROG Strix RX 470 and express their unique style.

Tweakable and intuitive: GPU Tweak II with XSplit Gamecaster

Redesigned with an intuitive user interface, GPU Tweak II makes gaming and overclocking easier than ever, while retaining advanced options for seasoned overclockers. With one click, the Gaming Booster function maximizes system performance by removing redundant processes and allocating all available resources automatically. An included 14-day XSplit Gamecaster premium license lets gamers easily stream or record gameplay via a convenient, in-game overlay. The overlay also displays GPU clock speed, temperature, and VRM usage, and has GPU Tweak II controls, so gamers can choose a gaming profile and boost performance with just one click.

 

Strix RX 470 Availability & Pricing

ASUS ROG Strix RX 470 will be available worldwide from 4th August 2016. Please contact your local ASUS representative for further information.

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GIGABYTE Radeon RX 460 WINDFORCE OC Announced

Taipei, 8 August 2016GIGABYTE today announced Radeon RX 460 WINDFORCE OC graphics cards based on the latest Polaris 11 GPU with two memory variants of 4GB and 2GB models.

Powered directly from the PCI Express slot, the power-efficient RX 460 graphics cards do not require auxiliary power yet come with a brilliant overclocking performance up to 1212MHz. Thanks to Polaris architecture with Ultra HD HEVC Encode and Decode, gamers could easily stream and record their favorite games with virtually no performance impact, making RX 460 an ideal upgrade solution for eSports gaming.

 

GIGABYTE Radeon RX 460 WINDFORCE OC

Featuring two semi-passive 80mm fans and unique blade fan design for enhancing airflow, the WINDFORCE 2X cooling system ensures the RX 460 WINDFORCE OC run cool and virtually inaudible while delivering smooth and low-latency gaming for the most popular eSports games. The fans are regulated as they remain turned off during lighter gaming, offering a completely silent, interruption-free experience to eSports gamers whose focus and concentration are vital to their victory.

The RX 460 WINDFORCE OC edition are built using Ultra Durable chokes and capacitors, making the MOSFET working at a lower temperature for more stable voltage output. Backed by a 4+1 power phase design, the cards ensure stable voltage output at a lower temperature, which translates to a better overclocking capability compared to the reference design. Via the intuitive interface of XTREME Engine utility, gamers can monitor and adjust clock speeds, voltage, and fan performance in real time according to their own preferences.

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Sneak Peek Of The AMD Radeon RX 460 In Action Rev. 2.0

During the AMD Polaris & 7th Generation APU tech briefing here in Malaysia, we stumbled upon an actual Radeon RX 460 graphics card.

AMD was using it to power a virtual reality demo of a space turret shooting game on an Oculus Rift VR headset. That was our first encounter with the Radeon RX 460, so we took off the perspex cover to take a closer look.

Updated @ 2016-07-30 : Added details of the virtual reality demo the Radeon RX 460 was powering, as well as a slide with its key specifications.

 

AMD Radeon RX 460 In Action

As AMD revealed earlier, the Radeon RX 460 is powered by the AMD Polaris 11 GPU, which has 14 Compute Units. It comes with 2 GB of GDDR5 memory on a 128-bit memory bus. For display output, this reference card has a DisplayPort, a HDMI port and a DVI port.

The Radeon RX 480, and the upcoming Radeon RX 470, on the other hand, are powered by the larger Polaris 10 GPU with 36 Compute Units, and 32 Compute Units respectively. They also have a much wider 256-bit memory bus with either 4 GB or 8 GB of GDDR5 memory.

We also took a video of the Radeon RX 460 in action. Check it out!

The Radeon RX 460 is designed to use very little power. It is powered entirely by the PCI Express bus and does not require an additional power connector. AMD has just revealed its official TDP as less than 75 W (see below).

With its low power requirement, the Radeon RX 460 is targeted at eSports gamers. It also makes for a great HTPC graphics card, as it supports hardware encoding and decoding of H.264 and HEVC (H.265) videos at 4K resolution.

 

AMD Radeon RX 460 Specifications

AMD just revealed some details of the Radeon RX 460’s key specifications, including the official design. Check it out!

As you can see, the final Radeon RX 460 card will have a slab-sided shroud that is similar to the one used in the Radeon RX 480. The Radeon RX 460 will be officially released on August 8, 2016. There is no official price indication, but we expect it to cost less than US$99.

 

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More AMD Polaris Information

Get more details or information on the new AMD Polaris graphics cards and architecture here :

 

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GIGABYTE RX 480 G1 GAMING Launched

Taipei, 19 July 2016GIGABYTE, the world’s leading gaming hardware brand, today announced the launch of Radeon RX 480 G1 GAMING graphics cards that come in variants of 4GB (RX480G1 GAMING-4GD) and 8GB (RX480G1 GAMING-8GD) of GDDR5 memory.

Based on the latest Polaris architecture with groundbreaking 14nm FinFET technology, the power-efficient GIGABYTE RX 480 G1 GAMING cards up the ante with the cherry-picked GPU core, WINDFORCE dual-fan cooler and RGB illumination, delivering exceptional performance and value with style to gamers looking for smooth gameplay at superior frame rates, as well as those wishing to enter the world of VR for the first time.

 

GIGABYTE RX 480 G1 GAMING

Taking advantage of the renowned WINDFORCE 2X cooling system, the GIGABYTE RX 480 G1 GAMING ensures cool and quietness when taking on the most graphics-intensive game titles. Two 90mm fans paired with three composite copper heat pipes which directly touch the GPU keep the card cool for extra overclocking headroom. The airflow is enhanced by the unique blade fan design to increase the cooling capacity by 23% while reducing turbulence to a minimum.

The cards also feature silent semi-passive cooling as the fans remain off at idle or low loads, offering a complete silent, interruption-free experience during light gaming. The Fan Stop indicator provides a user-friendly, instant display of the fan status.

Forged with top-notch GPU cores through the very own GPU Gauntlet Sorting technology, the GIGABYTE RX 480 G1 GAMING provide excellent power switching and thermal efficiency. The cards are further backed by a 6+2 power phase design for load balance that effectively extends the stability and longevity with lower component temperature. It ultimately allows greater overclocking capability, reinforcing higher, stable boost clocks at heavy load. In case of any power abnormality, the smart power indicator could immediately bring the issue to the gamer’s attention.

The outlook of the GIGABYTE RX 480 G1 GAMING follows the latest G1 GAMING aesthetics with the angular shroud design highlighted by orange accents. The cards bring life to PC builds with their full-spectrum RGB lighting. Gamers could enjoy maximum freedom to choose the right scheme for their gaming rigs with 16.8M customizable color options and numerous lighting effects with the software. The graphics cards also come with a metal back plate, keeping a clean look, whilst adding rigidity to the structure and protection of delicate PCB components.

Complementing the GIGABYTE RX 480 G1 GAMING series is XTREME Engine, the newly developed utility software. Via its redesigned, intuitive interface, clock speeds, voltage, fan profiles, power target, and RGB illumination could be easily managed and customized. With a simple click of the OC Mode button built in the XTREME Engine, gamers can easily overclock the card for an instant gaming performance boost.

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AMD Polaris GPU & 7th Generation APU Tech Briefings

AMD officially revealed the AMD Polaris GPUs and the 7th Generation AMD APUs at Computex 2016. The first graphics card based on the AMD Polaris architecture was the AMD Radeon RX 480, and that was officially launched on June 29th.

As part of their aggressive push to promote both the Radeon RX 480, and 7th Generation AMD APUs; David Nalasco and Peter Amos flew all the way from AMD Markham in Canada to give a thorough tech briefing on the new AMD technologies in those products.

BONUS : We stumbled upon the first Radeon RX 460 seen in action. Check it out here!

 

AMD Polaris Launch

Ryan Sim, Channel Sales Director of AMD ASEAN & India, started the event with a short welcome speech. He pointed out how the new AMD Radeon RX 480 offers unrivalled power efficiency, and brings virtual reality to the mainstream with a shockingly affordable price.

Then AMD officially launched the AMD Radeon RX 480 here in Malaysia, with this launch gambit. Check it out!

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AMD Polaris GPU Tech Briefing

In this video, David Nalasco, Senior Technology Manager for Graphics in the Radeon Technology Group, gives a thorough tech briefing on the new AMD Polaris architecture, and the first three graphics cards based on the Polaris 10 and Polaris 11 GPUs.

 

AMD 7th Generation APU Tech Briefing

Then Peter Amos, APU Product Marketing Manager, AMD Client Business Unit, gave a tech briefing on the new 7th Generation AMD APUs, as well as upcoming desktop processors based on the new AMD Zen architecture. Check it out!

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Vulkan Support For DOOM Now Available

Today, id Software announced the availability for the Vulkan version of DOOM that relies on innovative features to deliver incredible performance.

As many of you already know, the Vulkan API is a descendant of AMD’s Mantle that supports close-to-metal control across Windows 7, Windows 8.1, Windows 10, and Linux. Compared to OpenGL, Vulkan substantially reduces “API overhead” – the background work a CPU does to interpret what a game asks of the hardware – to deliver meaningful features, performance, and image quality and expose GPU hardware features that wouldn’t ordinarily be accessible through OpenGL

 

DOOM

DOOM benefits from Vulkan support by using several great features:

  • Asynchronous Shaders: Using multiple command processors — the Asynchronous Compute Engines in AMD’s Graphics Core Next and Polaris GPU architectures — each queue can submit commands without waiting for other tasks to complete.
  • Shader Intrinsics or Shader Intrinsic Functions, also called built-in functions, provide a way for game developers to directly access graphics hardware instructions in situations where those instructions would normally be abstracted by an API. This approach has been used successfully on gaming consoles to extract more performance from the GPU — and now AMD is enabling PCs with the same capability.
  • Frame Flip Optimizations which basically pass the frame directly to the display once it’s ready, i.e. skips the copy and save.

As Robert Duffy, Chief Technical Officer of id software pointed out at the AMD event at Computex 2016, “Vulkan is a modern API, with roots to AMD’s Mantle technology, and it provides real benefits to both us as developers and the large community of gamers using a wide range of hardware. When you factor in additional AMD features, like true Asynchronous Compute, custom intrinsic instructions, and combine those with a raw speed of idTech 6, we believe the experience on AMD will be hard to beat.”

 

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Faster Performance

Performance numbers produced by AMD internal testing show the performance benefits of Vulkan versus OpenGL implementation:

 

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True Performance Of The Radeon RX 480 Examined

True Performance Of The Radeon RX 480 Examined

After the Radeon RX 480 was found to draw excessive power from the PCI Express bus, AMD released the Radeon Software 16.7.1 driver. This is a non-WHQL driver that was promises to reduce the Radeon RX 480‘s power draw from the PCI Express bus. It also promises to improve the Radeon RX 480‘s performance to correct for the expected drop in performance.

The reduction in power consumption is not enabled by default though, because it reduces performance. Instead, AMD will add a Compatibility Mode option in Radeon Settings, which you must manually toggle. Check out what the new Radeon Software 16.7.1 driver offers :

  • The Radeon RX 480’s power distribution has been improved for AMD reference boards, lowering the current drawn from the PCIe bus.
  • A new “compatibility mode” UI toggle has been made available in the Global Settings menu of Radeon Settings. This option is designed to reduce total power with minimal performance impact if end users experience any further issues.  This toggle is “off” by default.
  • Performance improvements for the Polaris architecture that yield performance uplifts in popular game titles of up to 3%. These optimizations are designed to improve the performance of the Radeon RX 480, and should substantially offset the performance impact for users who choose to activate the “compatibility” toggle.

In this article, we will examine the drop in performance caused by the reduced power consumption. Then we will compare it to the boost in performance from the Radeon Software 16.7.1 driver. Check it out!

 

3DMark (1920 x 1080)

We started testing the graphics cards using 3DMark at the most common gaming resolution – 1920 x 1080.

In the lower resolution of 1920 x 1080, the Radeon RX 480 [Amazon] received a performance boost of 3% to 3.8%. That was sufficient to completely erase the 2.4% to 3% drop in performance due to the reduced power consumption.

 

3DMark (2560 x 1440)

Then we took 3DMark up a notch to the resolution of 2560 x 1440. According to AMD, this is the sweet spot for the Radeon RX 480 [Amazon]. Let’s take a look!

When we increased the resolution to 2560 x 1440 though, the performance boost from the Radeon Software 16.7.1 driver dropped to just 2.3% to 2.9%. It just about erased the drop in performance from the reduced power consumption.

 

3DMark (3840 x 2160)

This is torture, even for the 8 GB version of the Radeon RX 480 [Amazon].

At the 4K resolution, the 2.3% to 2.85% boost in  from the Radeon Software 16.7.1 driver was not enough to offset the 3.7% to 4% drop in performance from the lower TDP. The Radeon RX 480 [Amazon] ended up 1% to 1.8% slower.

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Next Page > Fallout 4, Witcher 3 & Warhammer Results, Conclusion

 

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Fallout 4 (1920 x 1080)

This chart shows you the minimum and maximum frame rates, as well as the average frame rate, FRAPS recorded in Fallout 4.

In Fallout 4, the new Radeon Software 16.7.1 driver boosted the average frame rate enough to make up for the drop in performance from the reduced power consumption.

 

The Witcher 3 (1920 x 1080)

This chart shows you the minimum and maximum frame rates, as well as the average frame rate, FRAPS recorded in The Witcher 3.

In The Witcher 3, the performance boost was substantial enough to give the Radeon RX 480 [Amazon] a small 1.3% boost in average frame rate, even with the Compatibility Mode triggered.

 

Total War : Warhammer (1920 x 1080)

This chart shows you the minimum and maximum frame rates, as well as the average frame rate, recorded by the Total War : Warhammer benchmark.

Surprisingly, the Radeon Software 16.7.1 driver did even better in Total War : Warhammer. Even with the reduced power consumption, the Radeon RX 480 [Amazon] received a nice 2.2% boost in the average frame rate!

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Conclusion

The Radeon Software 16.7.1 driver does two things – reprogram the Radeon RX 480‘s power controller so it will pull more current from the 6-pin PCI Express power cable, and less from the PCI Express bus. This fix does not reduce performance. However, it still means that the Radeon RX 480 [Amazon] will exceed its rated 150 W TDP.

The higher TDP should not cause any concerns normally. However, those want their Radeon RX 480 [Amazon] to adhere to the rated 150 W TDP can enable the new Compatibility Mode switch in Radeon Settings. This reduces the Radeon RX 480‘s TDP to 150 W.

The reduction in power consumption reduces performance, of course. But for all of the furore over the Radeon RX 480 power draw controversy, it looks like the performance boost that the Radeon RX 480 [Amazon] received from the higher-than-rated TDP was less than 4%.

We will be correcting our AMD Radeon RX 480 Review to reflect this change. Yes, 4% may be small, but it is still a significant change, and we have to be accurate.

The good news though is that the small drop in performance is virtually offset by performance optimisations for the AMD Polaris architecture in the new Radeon Software 16.7.1 driver. So if you are a Radeon RX 480 user, go get it now!

 

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HiAlgo Brings New Capabilities To Radeon

Sunnyvale, 7 July 2016AMD today announced the acquisition of software company HiAlgo Inc., a developer of unique PC gaming technologies designed to help Radeon RX Series GPUs transform gaming experience, increase GPU efficiency and improve the overall consistency of gaming experiences. The acquisition lays the groundwork for future gaming innovation in Radeon Software that will benefit owners of Radeon RX Series GPUs.

“Software is an integral part of advancing the science of graphics, enabling us to best harness the silicon of the GPU to maximize performance and deliver outstanding experiences in games and applications,” said Raja Koduri, senior vice president and chief architect, Radeon Technologies Group, AMD. “HiAlgo embodies our spirit of passion, persistence and play by delivering a number of creative approaches to software that improve gamers’ experiences, and helps future-proof the GPU.”

Radeon Software enables the ultimate in performance, features and stability of Radeon graphics to ensure an exceptional user experience. Today, launching alongside the Radeon RX 480 graphics card are nine new features of Radeon Software Crimson Edition designed to give users more control over their computing experience, including multi-GPU, display, and power efficiency settings, and a redefined overclocking tool in Radeon WattMan.

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Radeon Software 16.7.1 Performance Comparison

Radeon Software 16.7.1

Following the Radeon RX 480 power draw controversy, AMD released the Radeon Software 16.7.1 driver. This is a non-WHQL driver that was pushed out quickly to fix the Radeon RX 480‘s excessive power draw from the PCI Express bus. However, it also comes with a 3% boost in performance for the Polaris architecture.

Finally, we’ve implemented a collection of performance improvements for the Polaris architecture that yield performance uplifts in popular game titles of up to 3%1. These optimizations are designed to improve the performance of the Radeon RX 480, and should substantially offset the performance impact for users who choose to activate the “compatibility” toggle.

So we decided to take a look at the performance improvements it delivers in the Radeon RX 480 [Amazon]. We also took a look at how it affects the AMD Radeon R9 380 graphics card, which is based on the previous-generation Fiji architecture. Check it out!

 

3DMark (1920 x 1080)

We started testing the graphics cards using 3DMark at the most common gaming resolution – 1920 x 1080.

The Radeon RX 480 [Amazon] received a 3.15% boost in the Overall Score, a 3.77% boost in the Graphics Score and a 3% boost in the Combined Score. Very nice! The Radeon R9 380, however, did not benefit from the newer Radeon Software 16.7.1 driver at all.

The frame rate breakdown shows the Radeon RX 480 [Amazon] edging even further away from its predecessor, the Radeon R9 380. It is now 44-48% faster than the Radeon R9 380, thanks to the Radeon Software 16.7.1 driver.

 

3DMark (2560 x 1440)

Then we took 3DMark up a notch to the resolution of 2560 x 1440. According to AMD, this is the sweet spot for the Radeon RX 480 [Amazon]. Let’s take a look!

At this higher resolution, the Radeon RX 480 [Amazon] received a smaller performance boost of 2.6% in the Overall Score, 2.9% in the Graphics Score and 2.3% in the Combined Score. The Radeon R9 380‘s performance actually suffered slightly (by 1%) with the Radeon Software 16.7.1 driver.

The small boost in performance from the Radeon Software 16.7.1 driver only gave the Radeon RX 480 [Amazon] a small 0.5-1 fps boost in frame rate. Coupled with the slight drop in the Radeon R9 380‘s performance, the Radeon RX 480 is now 40-50% faster than the Radeon R9 380.

 

3DMark (3840 x 2160)

This is torture, even for the 8 GB version of the Radeon RX 480 [Amazon]. The Radeon R9 380 would do even worse, with just 4 GB of GDDR5 memory.

For some reason, the Radeon Software 16.7.1 driver caused the benchmark to fail while running on the Radeon R9 380. However, we can see that it gives the Radeon RX 480 [Amazon] is a small 2.4% boost in the Overall Score, a 2.3% boost in the Graphics Score and a 2.85% boost in the Combined Score.

Based on the Radeon R9 380 running on the earlier Radeon Software 16.6.2 driver, the Radeon RX 480 [Amazon] is now 36-49% faster than the Radeon R9 380 at this resolution.

Next Page > Fallout 4, Witcher 3 & Warhammer, Conclusion & Downloads

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Fallout 4 (1920 x 1080)

This chart shows you the minimum and maximum frame rates, as well as the average frame rate, FRAPS recorded in Fallout 4.

The new Radeon Software 16.7.1 driver seems to greatly increase the frame rate range for the Radeon RX 480, and slightly in the Radeon R9 380. However, only the Radeon RX 480 [Amazon] saw a small 1.9% boost in the average frame rate.

 

The Witcher 3 (1920 x 1080)

This chart shows you the minimum and maximum frame rates, as well as the average frame rate, FRAPS recorded in The Witcher 3.

The Radeon Software 16.7.1 driver gave both the Radeon RX 480 [Amazon] and the Radeon R9 380 a small boost in frame rate of 3% and 1% respectively.

 

Total War : Warhammer (1920 x 1080)

This chart shows you the minimum and maximum frame rates, as well as the average frame rate, recorded by the Total War : Warhammer benchmark.

Surprisingly, the Radeon R9 380 saw an appreciable boost in the frame rate range, although the average frame rate only creeped slightly higher. The Radeon RX 480 [Amazon], though, received a more substantial 2.8% boost in average frame rate.

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Conclusion & Downloads

If you are using the new AMD Radeon RX 480 [Amazon] graphics card, you should download and use the new Radeon Software 16.7.1, even if you don’t care about its excessive power draw from the PCI Express bus.

In the 3 games we tested, the Radeon RX 480 [Amazon] enjoyed a small boost of 2-3% in frame rate. Not earth-shattering, to be sure, but still a nice boost. The performance boost alone is worth upgrading to Radeon Software 16.7.1, even though it’s not WHQL-certified. You can download them here :

However, if you are using a Fiji-based graphics card like the Radeon R9 380 we tested, you should not waste your time with the new Radeon Software 16.7.1. You will not see any improvement in performance. In fact, it may even deteriorate a little, or worse, fail to run properly when rendering in 4K.

We also investigated how much performance is lost when the Radeon RX 480 [Amazon] is set to its Compatibility Mode to comply with the PCI Express standard. Check it out in our article – True Performance of the Radeon RX 480 Examined!

 

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AMD Radeon RX 480 Power Draw Controversy Rev. 3.0

After the AMD Radeon RX 480 was officially launched, several websites reported that their cards were drawing substantially more power from the PCI Express bus than the 75 W allowed by the PCI Express specifications. AMD has now come up with responses to this developing controversy.

2016-07-06 : Added a new page on the AMD driver solution, and our take on it.

2016-07-09 : Added a new section on the Radeon Software Crimson Edition 16.7.1 driver.

 

Excessive RX 480 Power Draw

The PCI Express specification allows for up to 66 W of power to be supplied by the 12 V line (12 V x 5.5 A) of the PCI Express bus. However, reviewers who have the necessary equipment to measure the power draw from the PCI Express slot have noted that the Radeon RX 480 draws 78-88 W of power from that 12 V line.

If their measurements are correct, the Radeon RX 480 exceeds the PCI Express power draw specification by a minimum of 18% and up to 33%. It also means that the Radeon RX 480 is exceeding its thermal design power (TDP) of 150 watts.

 

The Implications

The AMD Radeon RX 480 has to be certified to meet the PCI Express specifications to qualify the card as a PCI Express card, for branding and legal purposes. If the Radeon RX 480 does not fulfil its certification requirements, AMD has to fix the issue within 3 months. Failure to do so will result in the Radeon RX 480 being denied the right to be branded and sold as a PCI Express card.

For certain, AMD would certified the Radeon RX 480 to be PCI Express-compliant before the launch. However, independent testing has revealed that the Radeon RX 480 can and do exceed the power draw specifications. Why there is a discrepancy pre- and post-launch is yet unknown.

 

AMD Responds

Initially, Raja Koduri, Senior Vice President and Chief Architect, Radeon Technologies Group, responded on Reddit that :

Great question and I am really glad you asked.

We have extensive testing internally on our PCIE compliance and RX480 passed our testing. However we have received feedback from some of the reviewers on high current observed on PCIE in some cases.

We are looking into these scenarios as we speak and reproduce these scenarios internally. Our engineering team is fully engaged.

Just two days ago, AMD’s Communications Lead, Garrath Johnson, issued an update on their ongoing investigation of the issue :

As you know, we continuously tune our GPUs in order to maximize their performance within their given power envelopes and the speed of the memory interface, which in this case is an unprecedented 8Gbps for GDDR5.

Recently, we identified select scenarios where the tuning of some RX 480 boards was not optimal. Fortunately, we can adjust the GPUs tuning via software in order to resolve this issue.

We are already testing a driver that implements a fix, and we will provide an update to the community on our progress on Tuesday (July 5, 2016).

We will keep you updated on this developing Radeon RX 480 power draw story, so stay tuned!

Next Page > New Driver To Correct RX 480 Power Draw, Our Opinion

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New Driver To Correct RX 480 Power Draw

At 3:14 PM on July 6 (GMT+8), AMD’s Communications Lead, Garrath Johnson, emailed us the solution that AMD has developed – a new driver to correct the excessive Radeon RX 480 power draw from the PCI Express bus. Check it out :

We promised an update today (July 5, 2016) following concerns around the Radeon RX 480 drawing excess current from the PCIe bus. Although we are confident that the levels of reported power draws by the Radeon RX 480 do not pose a risk of damage to motherboards or other PC components based on expected usage, we are serious about addressing this topic and allaying outstanding concerns. Towards that end, we assembled a worldwide team this past weekend to investigate and develop a driver update to improve the power draw. We’re pleased to report that this driver—Radeon Software 16.7.1—is now undergoing final testing and will be released to the public in the next 48 hours.

In this driver we’ve implemented a change to address power distribution on the Radeon RX 480 – this change will lower current drawn from the PCIe bus.

Separately, we’ve also included an option to reduce total power with minimal performance impact. Users will find this as the “compatibility” UI toggle in the Global Settings menu of Radeon Settings. This toggle is “off” by default.

Finally, we’ve implemented a collection of performance improvements for the Polaris architecture that yield performance uplifts in popular game titles of up to 3%1. These optimizations are designed to improve the performance of the Radeon RX 480, and should substantially offset the performance impact for users who choose to activate the “compatibility” toggle.

AMD is committed to delivering high quality and high performance products, and we’ll continue to provide users with more control over their product’s performance and efficiency. We appreciate all the feedback so far, and we’ll continue to bring further performance and performance/W optimizations to the Radeon RX 480.

1: Based on data running ’Total War: Warhammer’, ultra settings, 1080p resolution. Radeon Software 16.6.2 74.2FPS vs Radeon Software 16.7.1 78.3FPS; Metro Last Light, very high settings, 1080p resolution, 80.9FPS vs 82.7 FPS. Witcher 3, Ultra settings, 1440p, 31.5FPS vs 32.5, Far Cry 4, ultra settings, 1440p, 54.65FPS vs 56.38FPS, 3DMark11 Extreme, 22.8 vs 23.7  System config: Core i7-5960X, 16GB DDR4-2666MHz, Gigabyte X99-UD4, Windows 10 64-bit. Performance figures are not average, may vary from run-to-run.

 

Radeon Software Crimson Edition 16.7.1

The Radeon Software Crimson Edition 16.7.1 driver is now available! Here are the compatibility and performance updates that promises to solve the Radeon RX 480 power draw problem :

  • The Radeon RX 480’s power distribution has been improved for AMD reference boards, lowering the current drawn from the PCIe bus.
  • A new “compatibility mode” UI toggle has been made available in the Global Settings menu of Radeon Settings. This option is designed to reduce total power with minimal performance impact if end users experience any further issues.  This toggle is “off” by default.
  • Performance improvements for the Polaris architecture that yield performance uplifts in popular game titles of up to 3%. These optimizations are designed to improve the performance of the Radeon RX 480, and should substantially offset the performance impact for users who choose to activate the “compatibility” toggle.

Also, the Radeon Software Crimson Edition 16.7.1 driver appears to fix the limited PCI Express bandwidth on the Radeon RX 480, giving it a further boost in performance :

  • Radeon RX 480 limited PCI-E Bandwidth (PCI-E bandwidth is now at the correct speed on the Radeon RX 480) with Radeon Software Crimson Edition 16.7.1.

You can download the new drivers below :

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Our Opinion

AMD has basically acknowledged that the Radeon RX 480 does indeed draw more power over the PCI Express bus than is allowed by the PCI Express specifications. That is also a tacit acknowledgement that the Radeon RX 480 has a thermal design power (TDP) in excess of 150 W.

They claim that the excessive Radeon RX 480 power draw will not damage the motherboard or related components. However, they also qualify that as limited to “expected usage” – that means using the Radeon RX 480 as is, and not overclocking it.

The Radeon Software Crimson Edition 16.7.1 driver they just released offers 3 changes :

  • shifting the excessive power draw from the PCI Express bus to the 6-pin PCIe power cable.
  • reduce the power consumption of Radeon RX 480 through a “compatibility” toggle in the driver.
  • improve the Radeon RX 480‘s performance by 3%, to offset the reduced performance when the “compatibility” toggle is enabled

We have a dedicated article covering the Radeon Software 16.7.1, which looks at its performance improvements. You can check it out here -> Radeon Software 16.7.1 Performance Comparison.

Although AMD implied that the performance impact of the “compatibility” toggle is substantially less than 3%, we examined its real impact and how much the Radeon Software 16.7.1 driver’s performance offset it. Check it out in our article – True Performance of the Radeon RX 480 Examined.

Going forward, we expect the Radeon RX 480 cards to eventually ship with an 8-pin PCI Express power connector for “compatibility” reasons.

 

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4GB Radeon RX 480 A Better Deal After 8GB Price Hike

When AMD first revealed the Radeon RX 480 during Computex 2016, they announced that it will come with 4GB or 8GB of GDDR5 memory. They also revealed that the 4GB Radeon RX 480 will cost US$199, while the 8GB model will cost US$229.

Yesterday, AMD officially launched the Radeon RX 480, but they increased the price of the 8GB model from US$229 to US$239. That’s a hike of US$10 over the original price, and a US$40 (20%) premium over the 4GB model.

 

4GB Radeon RX 480 A Better Deal

Of course, the original $229 price of the 8GB Radeon RX 480 was not set in stone, like the $199 price for the 4GB Radeon RX 480. It was an indicative price at that point. However, the higher price will make the 4GB Radeon RX 480 a more enticing proposition than the 8GB model.

After all, our AMD Radeon RX 480 review showed that it was best used for 1080p gaming. If that is what you are using it for, then there is not much need for additional 4GB of GDDR5 memory. Sure, having 8GB of RAM may improve benchmark scores a little, but it won’t be as much as the 20% price premium it demands.

This means the 4GB Radeon RX 480 will offer the best bang for your buck, and is therefore, the best choice for 1080p gaming from AMD. Unfortunately, there seems to be a dearth of 4GB Radeon RX 480 cards in the market. Obviously, we are not the only ones to come to the same conclusion…

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The AMD Radeon RX 480 Graphics Card Review

On the 23rd of June 2016, we received a surprise delivered by a special courier – the AMD Radeon RX 480 graphics card! This is one of the first few samples in the country. W00t!

Due to our existing commitments, we didn’t have all that much time to do a more thorough test, but here is a quick review for now. We will update the review with more benchmarks and details later.

 

The AMD Radeon RX 480 Hands-On Preview

Here is the hands-on preview video we created on the same day we received the Radeon RX 480, so please forgive the unpolished effort. Basically, it gives you an overview of how the card looks like, and what connectivity options it comes with.

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The AMD Radeon RX 480 Up Close

The next best thing we can do right now is take photos of the card to show you. Enjoy!

Next Page > AMD Radeon RX 480 – Size, Thermal Output, Noise Levels

 

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How Big Is It?

For those already measuring their cases to see if the AMD Radeon RX 480 will fit, we measured the card and added the measurements for your convenience.

As you can see, the Radeon RX 480 is “technically” a 7″ long card, but its cooler extends 6.7 cm or 2.65″ beyond the card.

 

The AMD Radeon RX 480 Thermal Output

The AMD Radeon RX 480 uses the new AMD Polaris 10 GPU, which is fabricated on the latest 14 nm FinFET process. This not only means AMD can stuff more transistors into a smaller chip, it also means lower power consumption and thermal output.

We tested this out by recording the peak exhaust temperature of the Radeon RX 480, its predecessor – the Radeon R9 380, as well as two NVIDIA graphics cards – the GeForce GTX 980 Ti and the new GeForce GTX 1070. Check out the results!

Note that these are not the recorded temperatures but how much hotter the exhaust air is above ambient temperature.

As you can see, it is a relatively cool-running card, producing significantly cooler (8 °C) exhaust air than the Radeon R9 380 graphics card.

But you might wonder – is this because it has a more powerful, and therefore, noisier, fan? Let’s take a look…

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The AMD Radeon RX 480 Noise Levels

AMD put a lot of work into reducing the noise levels for the Radeon RX 480. According to them, it is comparable to the noise levels of the NVIDIA GeForce GTX 970 graphics card. Take a look at the table and graph comparing the noise levels of the Radeon RX 480 against the GeForce GTX 970.

But nothing beats hearing it for yourself. So we recorded the sound of the cooler’s blower fan while it’s running the 3D Mark Fire Strike Ultra benchmark.

Okay, now let’s take a look at some benchmarks!

Next Page > AMD Radeon RX 480 Performance In 3DMark – 1080p, 1440p, 2160p

 

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Our Test Bed

Our graphics benchmarking test bed has the following specifications :

Operating System : Microsoft Windows 10 64-bit

Processor : Intel Core i7 6700K processor running at 4.0 GHz

Motherboard : ASRock Z170 Extreme4

Memory : 8 GB DDR4-2133 memory (dual-channel)

Storage : 240 GB HyperX Savage SSD

Monitor : BenQ XR3501 Gaming Monitor

 

3DMark (1920 x 1080)

We started testing the graphics cards using 3DMark at the most common gaming resolution – 1920 x 1080.

The AMD Radeon RX 480‘s 3DMark score for full HD gaming was very impressive. It was, on average, about 38% faster than the Radeon R9 380! In fact, the Radeon RX 480’s pure graphics score was 41% higher than the Radeon R9 380.

The frame rate breakdown shows just how much more superior the Radeon RX 480 is to its predecessor, the Radeon R9 380. It is 40-42% faster than the Radeon R9 380.

 

3DMark (2560 x 1440)

Then we took 3DMark up a notch to the resolution of 2560 x 1440. According to AMD, this is the sweet spot for the Radeon RX 480. Let’s take a look!

The Radeon RX 480 continued to maintain its performance lead of about 38% over the Radeon R9 380.

These are hardly playable frame rates but it is impressive to note how much the Radeon RX 480 is trouncing the Radeon R9 380.

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3DMark (3840 x 2160)

Okay, this is torture, even for the 8 GB version of the Radeon RX 480. Even the GeForce GTX 980 Ti and the new GeForce GTX 1070 have trouble handling the 3DMark 4K torture test. 😀

In the 4K graphics test, the Radeon RX 480’s performance lead over the Radeon R9 380 slipped a little to about 34%.

There is no doubt that the Radeon RX 480 is ill-suited for 4K gaming. Still, this is VERY impressive performance, considering the fact that it consumes 20% less power than the Radeon R9 380!

Next Page > AMD Radeon RX 480 Gaming Performance – Fallout 4 & Witcher 3

 

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Full HD Gaming

We had some problem with the BenQ XR3501 gaming monitor, which prevented us from using virtual resolution to test the four graphics cards. So we benchmarked The Witcher 3 : Wild Hunt and Fallout 4 in full HD resolution – 1920 x 1080. Here are their average frame rates :

The AMD Radeon RX 480 is perfect for full HD gaming. It is fast enough in both games to deliver frame rates in excess of 60 fps… most of the time. In The Witcher 3, it was actually 47% faster than the Radeon R9 380. Very impressive.

Of course, these are average frame rates. Let’s take a closer look at both games…

 

Fallout 4 (1920 x 1080)

This chart shows you the minimum and maximum frame rates, as well as the average frame rate, FRAPS recorded in Fallout 4.

The Radeon RX 480 shows a much wider range of frame rates, matching the Radeon R9 380 in the most difficult scenes but beating it as much as 28% in less arduous scenes.

 

The Witcher 3 (1920 x 1080)

This chart shows you the minimum and maximum frame rates, as well as the average frame rate, FRAPS recorded in The Witcher 3.