Subject: General Tech | March 26, 2012 - 01:45 PM | Jeremy Hellstrom
Tagged: gpu, pricing, nvidia, amd, radeon
AMD has spent a lot of money developing GCN and it shows with products that provide better performance than the previous generation and do so with less power consumption, a hard trick to pull off. There are also numerous other architectural changes in the three current families of Southern Island cards which benefit users, but most will be focused on faster graphics without the need to upgrade their PSU. Until last week, since AMD had the fastest GPU going period, as well as much better price/performance numbers than NVIDIA's choice, there was no reason for AMD to consider changing their pricing structure as they need to recuperate the amount of dollars spent on R&D as well as manufacturing.
Last week the GTX 680 changed that, as not only did NVIDIA steal the performance crown back from AMD but they also successfully reduced the power consumption which was the Achilles Heel of Fermi. Even worse news for AMD was the pricing that NVIDIA attached to their flagship Kepler product, at $500 they are priced below AMD's HD 7970 by between $50 to $100. AMD's only hope is that the process problems at TSMC will keep the availability of the GTX 680 down, which it seems to have as NewEgg has run out of that card. Hoping that your competitor cannot keep their stock up is not exactly a good model to run your business.
Unfortunately any price change AMD makes will have repercussions on many models. The 7950 averages about $460 which is far too close to the GTX 680's price since the performance is not that close, however dropping the HD 7950 towards $400 makes the HD 7870 at $360 a little uncomfortable. That is going to have an effect on AMD's profitability, since they likely set out their accounting based on the current pricing of the Radeon series and will have to recalculate a lot of numbers to lower price and still remain profitable. However painful a process that might be they need to think of it sooner, rather than later; NVIDIA has more Kelper cards in store and they are not going to cost more than the GTX 680.
So far we have not heard any substantiated rumours about price changes from AMD but you can speculate that they must be coming. For now you should first decide how much your budget can manage and then start looking for specials at retailers that bring the cards down to the price you have decided you can afford. If they aren't low enough today then wait a few days as the GPU market is going to be decidedly unstable for the next while.
Here is some more Tech News from around the web:
- Intel to offer new SSDs, say Taiwan makers @ DigiTimes
- Intel extends lead over Samsung in semiconductor market share @ The Inquirer
- AMD completes its buyout of Seamicro @ The Inquirer
- Many Ivy Bridge ultrabooks expected to be showcased at Computex Taipei
- The TR Podcast 108: Take three tablets and call Dr. Kepler in the morning
Subject: General Tech | March 15, 2012 - 10:36 PM | Tim Verry
Tagged: sapphire, radeon, HD 7970, gpu, amd, 7970
Sapphire Technologies recently launched a new factory overclocked version of the AMD Radeon HD 7970 graphics card. The new Radeon HD 7970 OC Edition promises to combine the performance of AMD's 7970 GPU (you can find our review of the 7970 here) with Sapphire's own Dual X two fan heatpipe cooler.
The Sapphire HD 7970 GPU is powered by one 8 pin and one 6 pin PCI-E power connection, and supports the PCI-E 3.0 standard and Microsoft's DirectX 11.1 technology. Other specifications include 3 GB of GDDR5 memory, a 28nm Graphics Core Next (GCN) GPU core, a 384-bit memory interface, and a dual BIOS switch depending on whether you want to run at stock clock speeds or use the factory overclocked profile.
Specifically, the Sapphire HD 7970 GPU features a dual bios switch that allows customers to switch between default clock speeds of 950 MHz core and 1425 MHz memory and the factory overclocked speeds of 1 GHz (1,000 MHz) core and 1450 MHz memory. When using the overclocked BIOS, the graphics card will employ more a more aggressive fan profile and also allows raises the maximum limits for overclocking the core, memory, and voltage values.
Further, the Sapphire GPU uses their own Dual X cooler that features a dual slot aluminum heatsink connected to the GPU core by five copper heatpipes. This heatsink is then cooled by two large fans, that Sapphire claims will enable quiet operation even while under load.
Accessories wise, Sapphire provides one DVI, one HDMI, and two mini Display Port video outputs. In the retail packaging, Sapphire provides an Active mini Display Port to single-link DVI adapter, HDMI to DVI adapter, DVI to VGA adapter, two PCI-E to molex power adapters (one molex to PCI-E 8 pin and one molex to PCI-E 6 pin), a mini Display Port to Display Port adapter, a 1.8 meter HDMI 1.4a cable, and a CrossFire bridge.
The new Sapphire HD 7970 OC Edition is available now from authorized retailers, and is retailing for between $580 and $630 at several retailers at the time of writing.
Subject: Graphics Cards | March 6, 2012 - 05:42 PM | Ryan Shrout
Tagged: radeon, pitcairn, hd 7870, hd 7850, amd, 7870, 7850
After the launch of our Radeon HD 7870 and HD 7850 review this week, I got a couple of emails asking for another data point around the Radeon HD 5800 cards that many users might be looking to upgrade from. Well, since everyone asked so nicely and I felt bad for not including it in the first place, I decided to quickly throw a HD 5870 1GB card on the test bed and run some 3DMark11 action.
Using the same hardware test bed as the other graphics cards, we ran the HD 5870 1GB using the 12.2 pre-certified driver, the same we used on the rest of our non-7000 series Radeon cards. Here are the results.
How does this compare to the new Pitcairn GPUs?
- 3DMark11 Performance Preset
- HD 5870 1GB: 4832
- HD 7870 2GB: 6601 (+36%)
- HD 7850 2GB: 5497 (+13%)
- 3DMark11 Extreme Preset
- HD 5870 1GB: 1649
- HD 7870 2GB: 2058 (+25%)
- HD 7850 2GB: 1645 (+0%)
It looks like with just this simple glance, the HD 7870 2GB card would be the only upgrade worth really stretching towards based on performance alone. There are definitely going to be cases where the 2GB frame buffer will help over the 1GB included in most HD 5870/5850 cards including Eyefinity and titles like Battlefield 3, so even if you go with the HD 7850 card you should see some gains.
Subject: Graphics Cards | March 5, 2012 - 12:40 PM | Jeremy Hellstrom
Tagged: southern islands, radeon, pitcairn, hd 7870, hd 7850, amd, 7870, 7850
To give the end of the story away at the beginning, sometime around March 19th you should be able to find an HD 7870 for about $350 and an HD 7850 for around $250. The HD 7870 not only costs less than the 6970 it consumes less power and can outperform it, making the HD 7870 the more attractive of the two cards. [H]ard|OCP was less impressed with the HD7850 as it costs about $40 more than a GTX 560 Ti but only performs a small amount better. It does consume a lot less power than the NVIDIA card though, which can be a big deal for some users and hints at possible overclocking potential.
Ryan had a slightly better experience with the HD 7850, which might attract those who cannot justify spending over $300 on a graphics card but still want multi-monitor functionality.
"AMD is introducing the performance mainstream Radeon HD 7870 and Radeon HD 7850 today. We'll look at performance compared to the competition and talk about pricing and explore value. If you are in the market for a video card between $249 and $349 these video cards will likely need to be on your short list."
Here are some more Graphics Card articles from around the web:
- AMD Radeon HD 7870 GHz Edition & Radeon HD 7850 @ AnandTech
- AMD's Radeon HD 7870 GHz @ The Tech Report
- AMD Radeon HD 7870 GHz Edition & 7850 Video Card Review @ Legit Reviews
- AMD Radeon HD 7870 & 7850 Launch Review @ Neoseeker
- AMD Radeon HD 7870 2GB @ Tweaktown
- AMD Radeon HD 7850 2GB @ Tweaktown
- AMD Radeon HD 7850 Video Card Review Review @ Hardware Secrets
- AMD Radeon HD 7870 GHz Edition Video Card Review @ Hardware Secrets
- AMD Radeon HD 7870 & Radeon HD 7850 @ Techspot
- AMD Radeon HD 7870 and Radeon HD 7850 Graphics Cards Launch Review @ HardwareHeaven
- AMD Radeon HD 7870 and Radeon HD 7850 @ Legion Hardware
- AMD HD7870 and HD7850 @ Kitguru
- AMD Radeon HD 7870 & HD 7850 Review @ Hardware Canucks
- AMD Radeon HD 7850 and 7870 @ Guru of 3D
- AMD Radeon HD 7850 & HD 7870 2 GB @ techPowerUp
Completing the Family
When we went to Austin, Texas to sit with AMD and learn about the Radeon HD 7900 series of cards for the first time, an interesting thing happened. While the official meeting was about the performance of the Radeon HD 7970 and HD 7950, when things started to settle several AMD employees couldn't help but discuss Cape Verde (7700-series) and Pitcairn (7800-series) GPUs. In particular, the HD 7800 cards were generating a lot of excitement internally as a spiritual follow up to the wildly successful HD 5800 and HD 5700 series of cards in terms of price and performance characteristics.
So while the Radeon HD 7970 and HD 7950 are being labeled as the world's fastest GPUs, and the Radeon HD 7700 is the fastest GPU for everyone, the HD 7800s are where many of our readers will look when upgrading their machines while staying within a budget.
Be sure to check out our video review posted here and then continue on to our full, written review for all the benchmarks and analysis!!!
Subject: Graphics Cards | February 15, 2012 - 02:33 PM | Jeremy Hellstrom
Tagged: xfx, southern islands, hd 7770, hd 7750, cape verde, amd, radeon, factory overclocked
The days of the HD 6870 are numbered as today we see the arrival of the new sub-$200 GPUs from AMD, the HD7770 and HD7750. The stock HD 7770 run at 1GHz with 640 stream processors, 40 texture units and 16 ROPs and the 1GB of memory rides on a 128-bit bus at 4.5GHz. The stock HD7750 has a slower core, running at 800MHz and a lower stream processor count of 512 as well as only 32 Texture units, with the memory subsystem unchanged from the HD7770.
Those who were disappointed by the lack of custom coolers and factory overclocks at the release of the HD 7970 will be happy to see the variety of HD7700 series cards. For instance [H]ard|OCP reviewed the XFX R7770 Black Edition Super Overclocked which has a custom cooler, a 120MHz overclock on the core and a 300Mhz on the memory, effectively 5.2GHz. [H] proved that there is more memory headroom available in this card, adding another 1.1GHz without needing to adjust the voltage. For those who are willing to risk upping the power there might be even more speed possible from this card.
"Today marks the launch of AMD's Radeon HD 7700 series of GPUs in the sub-$200 bracket. We've got a retail XFX R7770 Black Edition Super Overclocked video card just itching to show us what it can do. Will this Radeon HD 7770 based video card hold up to the likes of the Radeon HD 6870 and GeForce GTX 560 Ti? You may be surprised."
Here are some more Graphics Card articles from around the web:
- AMD's Radeon HD 7770 GHz Edition @ The Tech Report
- Sapphire Radeon HD 7770 Overclocked Video Card @ Pro-Clockers
- AMD Radeon HD 7770 XT 1GB Graphics Card Review @ eTeknix
- AMD HD7770 @ OC3D
- AMD Radeon HD 7770 & 7750 @ Legion Hardware
- XFX & Sapphire Radeon HD 7770 Review @ Neoseeker
- Sapphire Radeon HD 7770 Overclock Edition 1GB Graphics Card Review @ eTeknix
- AMD Radeon HD 7750 & Radeon HD 7770 GHz Edition Review: Evading The Price/Performance Curve @ AnandTech
- AMD HD7770 Cape Verde with “Verdetrol 1GHz” @ SemiAccurate
- AMD Radeon HD 7770 & 7750 Launch Review @ Neoseeker
- AMD Radeon HD 7750 Pro 1GB Graphics Card Review @ eTeknix
- HIS Radeon HD 7750 iCooler @ Funky Kit
- XFX & Sapphire HD 7770 1GB Review @ OCC
- HIS Radeon HD 7750 Graphics Card Review @ HardwareHeaven
- AMD Radeon HD 7770 and 7750 Video Card Reviews @ Legit Reviews
- MSI Radeon HD 7770 OC @ Guru of 3D
- HIS Radeon HD 7750 iCooler Video Card @ Benchmark Reviews
- AMD Radeon HD 7770 & Radeon HD 7750 @ Techspot
- XFX Radeon HD 7770 Jet Black Edition Super Overclock vs GTX 560 @ HardwareHeaven
- Sapphire HD 7770 Overclock Edition @ LanOC Reviews
- AMD Radeon HD 7770 GHz Edition Video Card Review @ Hardware Secrets
- Sapphire Radeon HD 7770 OC Graphics Card Review @ HardwareHeaven
- AMD Radeon HD 7770 & HD 7750 Review @ Hardware Canucks
- TX3D HD7770 1GHZ Edition Crossfire @ Kitguru
- HIS HD7750 iCooler @ Kitguru
- Sapphire HD7770 1GHZ Overclock Edition @ Kitguru
- AMD Radeon HD 7750 and 7770 @ Guru of 3D
- AMD Radeon HD 7770 GHz Edition 1 GB @ techPowerUp
Southern Islands Get Small
When AMD first started to talk to me about the upcoming Southern Islands GPUs they tried to warn me. Really they did. "Be prepared for just an onslaught of card releases for 2012," I was told. In much the same strategy the company took with the HD 6000 series of cards, the new Radeon HD 7000 cards have been trickling out, part by part, so as to make sure the name "AMD" and the brand "Radeon" are showing up as often as possible in your news feeds and on my keyboard. In late December we wrote our review of the Radeon HD 7970 3GB flagship card and then followed that up in January with a review of the Radeon HD 7950. In those briefings were told in a general way about Cape Verde, the Radeon HD 7700 series, and Pitcairn, the Radeon HD 7800 series, but without the details of performance, specifications or release dates. We have the answer for one more of these families now: Cape Verde.
Cape Verde is the smallest of the Southern Islands dies and falls into the sub-$175 graphics market depending on card vendors' pricing and overclocking settings. The real question we all wanted to know is what performance levels these new cards were going to offer and if they could be the TRUE successor to popular Radeon HD 5770. While the answer will take pages and pages of details to cement into place, I can say that while an impressive card, I wasn't as excited as I had wanted to be.
But I am getting ahead of myself... Check out our video review right here and then keep reading on for the full evaluation!!
AMD Cape Verde - the smallest of the Southern Islands
GPU companies like to brag when they are on top - you'll see that as a recurring theme in our story today. One such case is the success of the Radeon HD 5770 that mentioned above - it still today sits on the throne of the most adopted DX11 capable GPU on the Steam Hardware Survey, one of our best places for information on the general PC gamer.
While the inclusion of it, as well as the Radeon HD 5870 and HD 5850, on this list are great for AMD a couple of years ago, the lack of a 6000-series card here shows us that users need another reason to upgrade; another card that is mass market enough (ala under $200) and offers performance advantages that really push gamers to spend that extra cheddar.
Bring in the Cape Verde GPU...
Subject: Editorial, General Tech, Graphics Cards | February 9, 2012 - 08:48 PM | Ryan Shrout
Tagged: amd, radeon, southern islands
Working from home comes with a host of stereotypes and assumptions that the rest of world places on people like myself. I am often accused of working in my underwear, not showering through day-long stretches, not working and instead playing games all day and of course, being a drug dealer. And NOTHING perpetuates that vision from the outside world like an overnight UPS package arriving with the sound of rattling pills inside. This is what greeted me after my delivering smirked away:
In preparation for an upcoming graphics launch AMD thought up a pretty interesting marketing campaign geared around a "Verdetrol 1GHz" drug that will apparently help the reviewing community "enhance performance". Hmph.
Actually contained within are 28 jelly beans (get it, 28nm???) of a flavor I can't quite detect though I am guessing they are somehow related to this. And of course, these pills are for "external use only" - a healthy warning.
The telephone number is listed as 905-555-7770 so you can probably guess what the hubbub is all about.
And while the directions state to take one tablet daily by fan intake, we were never one to conform.
Subject: Editorial, General Tech | February 2, 2012 - 03:11 PM | Ken Addison
Tagged: ssd, sandforce, radeon, podcast, patriot, nvidia, Intel, gtx, arm, amd, 7950
PC Perspective Podcast #187 - 02/02/2012
Join us this week as we talk about our thoughts on Ultrabooks, the Radeon HD 7950, ASUS DirectCU GTX cards, and more!
The URL for the podcast is: http://pcper.com/podcast - Share with your friends!
- iTunes - Subscribe to the podcast directly through the iTunes Store
- RSS - Subscribe through your regular
- MP3 - Direct download link to the MP3 file
Hosts: Ryan Shrout, Josh Walrath, Jeremy Hellstrom, and Allyn Malvantano
This Podcast is brought to you by
- 0:00:40 Introduction
- 1-888-38-PCPER or email@example.com
- http://twitter.com/ryanshrout and http://twitter.com/pcper
- 0:01:20 Ultrabooks: Intel Knows What's Good For You
- 0:08:30 Patriot Pyro and Wildfire SSD Review - IMFT Async vs. Toshiba Toggle-mode Flash
- 0:14:20 AMD Radeon HD 7950 3GB Graphics Card Review
- 0:25:50 This Podcast is brought to you by
, and their all new Sandy Bridge Motherboards!
- 0:26:38 Asus DirectCU II Roundup: ENGTX560, ENGTX570, and ENGTX580 Review
- 0:40:35 Raspberry Pi Linux Computer Will Have Fast GPU For The Price
- 0:44:20 If you thought Intel did well wait until you see ARM
- 0:47:00 AMD 7700 and 7800 Release Dates Leak To Web
- 0:51:20 Live Blog: AMD Financial Analyst Day
- 0:52:20 Hardware / Software Pick of the Week
- Josh: And it is on sale! $770 off!
- Allyn: Corsair Force 3 - very good pricing.
- 1-888-38-PCPER or firstname.lastname@example.org
- http://twitter.com/ryanshrout and http://twitter.com/pcper
Subject: Graphics Cards | February 1, 2012 - 02:32 PM | Tim Verry
Tagged: radeon, pitcairn, hd 7870, hd 7850, hd 7770, hd 7750, cape verde, amd
It is now February, and despite the weather outside (which feels like late spring/early summer) not following the middle of winter approach, the year has only just begun. AMD has really been on the ball with new releases; however, and has managed to launch two of the three planned enthusiast level graphics cards with the AMD Radeon HD 7970 and the Radeon HD 7950 on January 9th and 31st respectively. What this means is that the company has the rest of the year to dole out the cheaper and lower performance cards. Even so, if this leaked slide is to be believed, it looks like AMD will not be wasting any time and is planning to roll out a slew of 7700 and 7800 series card launches before the second quarter of this year is over!
As one step down from the 7900 series, Pitcairn represents AMD's new "mid-range" parts. As of now, the Pitcairn series includes Pitcairn XT and Pitcairn Pro which will be labeled the Radeon 7870 and 7850 respectively. This recent leak does not stray too far from previous rumors, and both Pitcairn 7800 series AMD cards should see a March 2012 launch. The article further specifies a March 6th, 2012 release as the first day of the German CeBit 2012 trade show. In name, Pitcairn is the successor to the current Barts XT and Barts Pro based Radeon HD 6870 and HD 6850 cards, but is rumored to offer a similar level of performance to the 6950 and 6970 graphics cards. Allegedly, the cards will utilize 2GB GDDR5 memory on a 256-bit memory interface. Further, the Pitcairn XT that will be the HD 7870 will have 1536 ALUs (arithmetic logic unit) at 950 MHz, 96 texture units, 32 ROPs (Raster Operations Pipeline), 24 SIMDs (single instruction, multiple data), and a 120 watt TDP (thermal design power). The HD 7850 on the other hand will be slightly scaled back with only 1408 ALUs at 850 MHz, 88 texture units, and 22 SIMDs. Also, the memory clock will be scaled back. The reductions in hardware will give the card a supposed lower 90 watt TDP.
Moving down the performance ladder, AMD will launch the Cape Verde XT and Cape Verde Pro based Radeon Hd 7770 and HD 7750 cards later this month on February 15th, 2012. BSN claims that the Cape Verde cards will use either 1 GB of GDDR 3 or GDDR5 memory and will be in the $100 and $160 price range (with the 7770 on the high end of the scale and 7750 on low end). According to this article over at Tom's Hardware, the 7700 series cards will be much smaller than their bigger brothers at a bit over 8 inches in length. They will feature a 128-bit memory interface, 6 pin PCI-E connector, approximate 100 watt power consumption, and a Graphics Core Next GPU architecture.
The 7770 graphics card. (Image leaked from ChipHell)
The remaining card that is likely to be of interest to our readers is the dual GPU monster that is the 7990. This card will be based off of two 7970 GPUs. Unfortunately; however, further details and pricing are not known. There is speculation that the 7990 card will have 6 GB of GDDR5 graphics memory, 256 texture units, 64 ROPs, 62 compute units (CUs), and a massive number of stream processors at 4,096 based on the card being comprised of two 7970 cards. Also, the launch date is still listed as "To Be Determined."
Lots of information is still speculation, but if it holds true, AMD is looking to get as much of a lead on Nvidia as possible by getting as many of their 7000 series out of the gate as possible. Which 7000 series cards are you most interested in?