AMD Radeon HD 7990 Dual-GPU Card Coming Q1 2012

Subject: Graphics Cards | December 26, 2011 - 12:05 PM |
Tagged: tahiti, southern islands, radeon, amd, 7990, 7970

The big talk during the holiday break was AMD's release of the Radeon HD 7970 3GB graphics card - the new single-GPU performance leader.  I gave the card our Editor's Choice award for simply impressing the hell out of us, all while keeping power consumption in check thanks to the TSMC 28nm process technology it is built on.  Being the first card to support the upcoming DX11.1 and PCI Express 3.0 are just a bit of icing on the fruitcake. 

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During our talks with AMD they teased a dual-GPU version of Southern Islands they were calling "New Zealand".  According to a report from Softpedia that card might be available sooner than we thought - sometime in the first quarter of 2012.  Because the new Tahiti GPU is actually more power efficient than Cayman, seeing the pending Radeon HD 7990 with two full powered GPUs isn't out the question though we would expect to see slightly lower clock speeds.

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Because of the ZeroCore Technology implemented this generation of GPU from AMD, the HD 7990 will be able to run at basically the same power levels as the Radeon HD 7970 at idle and at the Windows desktop. 

The most interesting part?  This would give the HD 7990 a 6GB frame buffer, 3GB per GPU as we see today on the HD 7970.  Chances are this would give the graphics card more memory than many of our readers primary computer...

If you are interested in this type of card, start saving your pennies now.  When the Radeon HD 6990 launched (the Cayman-based dual-GPU card) it was priced at $699 and never went any lower.  With the price of a single Southern Islands GPU curently at $549, expect to see even higher numbers than the HD 6990 has.  I hope we don't see the same availability issues with the pending HD 7990 release but you can't be sure.  

Source: Softpedia
December 26, 2011 | 01:49 PM - Posted by soldierguy

Nice article. Thanks. Which will likely give more performance? Two 7970's in Crossfire or the dual GPU single card?

December 26, 2011 | 01:51 PM - Posted by Ryan Shrout

If the clock speeds on the 7990 are a bit lower than the 7970 are, then the dual 7970 cards would be faster. However, you'd require more slots in you case, etc. And, the price of an HD 7990 SHOULD be lower...though that didn't really happen on the HD 6990.

December 26, 2011 | 07:16 PM - Posted by me (not verified)

I can put some icing on your fruitcake.. If you know what I mean.

December 26, 2011 | 11:02 PM - Posted by dagamer34 (not verified)

$899? $999?

December 27, 2011 | 09:43 AM - Posted by Anonymous Coward (not verified)

There is no market for AMD GPUs at these prices. Mark my words.

January 16, 2012 | 12:16 PM - Posted by Greg-J (not verified)

No, there definitely is a market for this GPU at this price point. I'm waiting, cash in hand.

December 27, 2011 | 10:31 AM - Posted by mark (not verified)

Coward while in a left field sort of way I agree, in the end, if it pulls out a better end result then an Nvidia product then people will buy it and there will be a market.

December 27, 2011 | 04:36 PM - Posted by Jeff (not verified)

The last 3 graphics cards I got were amd and I'm not a fanboy of either company, but in reality if all nvidia did was use a little faster memory and 50% more of compute cores in kepler than the 580 it would overtake the 7970. Can't wait to see what nvidia has in store for us.

December 27, 2011 | 07:28 PM - Posted by Ron Fletcher (not verified)

It would be released by Q1 2012 but I'm expecting it to come in my country by Q3.

December 27, 2011 | 07:29 PM - Posted by Ron Fletcher (not verified)

It would be released by Q1 2012 but I'm expecting it to come in my country, NZ, by Q3.

December 28, 2011 | 10:39 AM - Posted by dreamer77dd

i would want to have 4 gpu of this in my case wonder if their any board that willing to do that. Need more space with the pci slots hmm

December 29, 2011 | 02:42 PM - Posted by djotter

Hey Ron maybe Computerlounge and Playtech will get them in especially for this cards name-sake. New Zealand FTW!

December 30, 2011 | 12:52 AM - Posted by Swoosh (not verified)

Nice, looking forward to its release. Imagine installing two Radeon 7990 on Xfire mode? Even if your monitor's resolution is 2560 x 1800 you can pretty much play BF3 on is very highest settings without any fps lags or slowdowns.

In addition to this, a 6 gigabyte GDDR 5 memory, this will really help a lot Application developers specially those individuals who are into After Effects and digital movie editing and 3D design and animation that utilizes the OpenCL features of Radeon.

January 24, 2012 | 08:11 PM - Posted by Anonymous (not verified)

ive never understood the fan boi'ism that people display for certain brands. both brands will get the job done, and they both have there plus's and minus's. ive bought both over the years and have always been happy with both purchases. ive owned both over the years. right now im roling 2 gtx 570's but the next rig i build will have amd in it.ive also had problems with both companies. i had 2 doa amd cards and 1 doa nvidia card and another with a whistling gpu. both companies fixed the problems and i was happy. in the end i think u should try everything cause ive found plus's and minus's with both companies. bulldozer though is another beast dont know wtf happened there and im pissed

January 29, 2012 | 02:27 PM - Posted by BF3 PL8 (not verified)

Multi-GPU setups are one of those fun-to-have things rather than something it actually makes good sense to own and run. The primary purpose of the GPU is to churn out frames in games, but the fact of the matter is that actual performance ultimately depends on the game developers' interest in optimizing their code to take advantage of the capabilities of the hardware available. The fact that the only commercially viable approach is to develop with the lowest common denominator in mind - i.e. consoles - means that multi-GPU setups will never get the kind of attention from game developers that they need. Sure, there will be the odd application or two that may demonstrate reasonable gains with multi-GPU setups, but by and large, they are still a hit or miss affair. When performance is so heavily dependent on drivers and software optimizations, and the multi-GPU setup owners form less than 1% of the market, it's a case of seriously diminishing returns. Coupled with the constantly improving offerings from the big two and hardcore gamers are thus better off getting the best single-gpu setups they can rather than trying to SLI/CF their cards with every generation.

February 14, 2012 | 10:30 PM - Posted by Gabriel (not verified)

It seems as if some are forgetting the most important feature of the 7000 series cards. The embedded APU. This new application of silicon to the new cards is something no other company can offer. It allows a system that uses the 1st generation or up and coming 2nd generation 8 core AMD processors and one of these 7000 series cards the ability to maximize performance like never before. For the first time ever your AMD Graphics card and processor as well as installed memory will be able to work together flawlessly. This link form the AMD website can enplane it better then I can. http://www.amd.com/us/products/embedded/apu/Pages/embedded-apu.aspx#/54632

Good luck Intel :)

February 14, 2012 | 10:45 PM - Posted by Gabriel (not verified)

Forgot about this link as well explaining further how it all works in this new generation of Graphics card. Sorry for not including it on the first post.
http://www.nordichardware.com/news/71-graphics/44786-radeon-hd-7000-seri...

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