Subject: Graphics Cards | March 29, 2018 - 05:45 PM | Tim Verry
Tagged: RX 580, RX 570, RX 560, RX 550, Polaris, mining, asrock, amd
ASRock, a company known mostly for its motherboards that was formerly an Asus sub-brand but is now an independent company owned by Pegatron since 2010 is now getting into the graphics card market with a new Phantom Gaming series. At launch, the Phantom Gaming series is comprised of four AMD Polaris-based graphics cards including the Phantom Gaming RX 550 2G and RX 560 2G on the low end and the Phantom Gaming X RX 570 8G OC and RX 580 8G OC on the mid/high end range.
ASRock is using black shrouds with white accents and silver and red logos. The lower end Phantom Gaming cards utilize a single dual ball bearing fan while the Phantom Gaming X cards use a dual fan configuration. ASRock is using copper baseplates paired with aluminum heatsinks and composite heatpipes. The Phantom Gaming RX 550 and RX 560 cards use only PCI-E slot power while the Phantom Gaming X RX 570 and RX 580 cards get power from both the slot and a single 8-pin PCI-E power connector.
Video outputs include one HDMI 2.0, one DisplayPort 1.4, and one DL-DVI-D on the Phantom Gaming parts and one HDMI 2.0, three DisplayPort 1.4, and one DL-DVI-D on the higher-end Phantom Gaming X graphics cards. All of the graphics card models feature both silent and overclocked modes in addition to their out-of-the-box default clocks depending on whether you value performance or noise. Users can select which mode they want or perform a custom overclock or fan curve using ASRock's Phantom Gaming Tweak utility.
On the performance front, out of the box ASRock is slightly overclocking the Phantom Gaming X OC cards (the RX 570 and RX 580 based ones) and slightly underclocking the lower end Phantom Gaming cards (including the memory which is downclocked to 6 GHz) compared to their AMD reference specifications.
|ASRock RX 580 OC||RX 580||ASRock RX 570 OC||RX 570||ASRock RX 560||RX 560||ASRock RX 550||RX 550|
|GPU Clock (MHz)||1380||1340||1280||1244||1149||1275||1100||1183|
|GPU Clock OC Mode (MHz)||1435||-||1331||-||1194||-||1144||-|
|Memory Clock (GHz)||8GHz||8GHz||7GHz||7GHz||6GHz||7GHz||6GHz||7GHz|
|Memory Clock OC Mode (MHz)||8320||-||7280||-||6240||-||6240||-|
The table above shows the comparisons between the ASRock graphics cards and their AMD reference card counterparts. Note that the Phantom Gaming RX 560 2G is based on the cut-down 14 CU (compute unit) model rather than the launch 16 CU GPU. Also, even in OC Mode, ASRock does not bring the memory up to the 7 GT/s reference spec. On the positive side, turning on OC mode does give a decent factory overclock of the GPU over reference. Also nice to see is that on the higher end "OC Certified" Phantom Gaming X cards, ASRock overclocks both the GPU and memory speeds which is often not the case with factory overclocks.
ASRock did not detail pricing with any of the launch announcement cards, but they should be coming soon with 4GB models of the RX 560 an RX 550 to follow later this year.
It is always nice to have more competition in this space and hopefully a new AIB partner for AMD helps alleviate shortages and demand for gaming cards if only by a bit. I am curious how well the cards will perform as while they look good on paper the company is new to graphics cards and the build quality really needs to be there. I am just hoping that the Phantom Gaming moniker is not an allusion to how hard these cards are going to be to find for gaming! (heh) If the rumored Ethereum ASICs do not kill the demand for AMD GPUs I do expect that ASRock will also be releasing mining specific cards as well at some point.
What are your thoughts on the news of ASRock moving into graphics cards?
Subject: General Tech | February 27, 2018 - 12:43 PM | Jeremy Hellstrom
Tagged: amd, Vega, farcry 5, ubisoft, RX 580, RX VEGA 64, RX Vega 56, gaming
If you purchase a custom built system with an RX 580 or either of the Vega cards, you will receive a coupon code which you can redeem for a copy of Far Cry 5 Standard edition. Considering purchasing a full system is the only way to get a GPU for a marginally reasonable cost, it makes sense not to tie it to a GPU sale as has been tradition in the past. UbiSoft have worked with AMD to ensure the game can take advantage of the various new features Vega offers such as FreeSync 2, Rapid Packed Math and Shader Intrinsics. You can get more info on Vega here, or visit your favourite retailer for a look at qualifying systems.
"Gamers looking for smooth, more immersive gameplay as they join The Resistance and help bring down the cult, can get Far Cry 5 FREE when they buy select pre-built systems featuring Radeon RX Vega 64, Radeon RX Vega 56 or Radeon RX 580 graphics cards starting today February 27th 2018."
Here is some more Tech News from around the web:
- Microsoft Updates Guideline on Windows Driver Security @ Slashdot
- Apple: Er, yes. Your iCloud stuff is now on Google's servers, too @ The Register
- DXRacer Racing Pro R131-NR Gaming Chair @ TechPowerUp
- Guru3D Rig of the Month - February 2018
Subject: Graphics Cards | February 3, 2018 - 05:00 PM | Tim Verry
Tagged: RX 580, msi, GDDR5, factory overclocked, amd, 8gb
MSI is updating its Radeon RX 580 Armor series with a new MK2 variant (in both standard and OC editions) that features an updated cooler with red and black color scheme and a metal backplate along with Torx 2.0 fans.
The graphics card is powered by a single 8-pin PCI-E power connection and has two DisplayPort, two HDMI, and one DVI display output. MSI claims the MK2 cards use its Military Class 4 hardware including high end solid capacitors. The large heatsink features three copper heatpipes and a large aluminum fin stack. It appears that the cards are using the same PCB as the original Armor series but it is not clear from MSI’s site if they have dome anything different to the power delivery.
The RX 580 Polaris GPU is running at a slight factory overclock out of the box with a boost clock of up to 1353 MHz (reference is 1340) for the standard edition and at up to 1366 MHz for the RX 580 Armor MK2 OC Edition. The OC edition can further clock up to 1380 MHz when run in OC mode using the company’s software utility (enthusiasts can attempt to go beyond that but MSi makes no guarantees). Both cards come with 8GB of GDDR5 memory clocked at the reference 8GHz.
MSI did not release pricing or availability but expect them to be difficult to find and for well above MSRP when they are in stock If you have a physical Microcenter near you, it might be worth watching for one of these cards there to have a chance of getting one closer to MSRP.
Subject: Graphics Cards | November 29, 2017 - 03:20 PM | Jeremy Hellstrom
Tagged: windows 10, vega 64, RX 580, microsoft, linux 4.15, linux, amd
With a new Linux kernel out, Phoronix revisited the performance of two of AMD's new cards running on that kernel as well as the current version of Windows 10. GPU testing on Linux has gotten more interesting thanks to the upsurge in compatible games, this review encompasses the recent Deus Ex, Shadow of Mordor, F1 2017 and GRID Autosport. The tests show there is still work to be done on the Mesa Radeon graphics driver stack as in all cases the performance lagged behind on Linux even though the hardware was exactly the same.
"As we end out November, here is a fresh look at the current Windows 10 Pro Fall Creator's Update versus Ubuntu 17.10 with the latest Linux 4.15 kernel and Mesa 17.4-dev Radeon graphics driver stack as we see how various games compete under Windows 10 and Linux with these latest AMD drivers on the Radeon RX 580 and RX Vega 64 graphics cards."
Here is some more Tech News from around the web:
- Civilization VI: Rise And Fall expansion out Feb 8th @ Rock, Paper, SHOTGUN
- Absolver Review @ OCC
- Black Mesa’s Xen chapters delayed again @ Rock, Paper, SHOTGUN
- Homeword: Deserts of Kharak gets its first update in over a year, adding tactical pause @ Rock, Paper, SHOTGUN
- Half-Life 2: MMod v3 Finally Has a Release Date @ [H]ard|OCP
- Humble Racing Bundle
- Deus Ex is “waiting its turn” for a new game @ Rock, Paper, SHOTGUN
- Destiny 2's Seasoning Is Off, But There's No Shortage Of Salt @ Techgage
Forza Motorsport 7 Performance
The first full Forza Motorsport title available for the PC, Forza Motorsport 7 on Windows 10 launched simultaneously with the Xbox version earlier this month. With native 4K assets, HDR support, and new visual features like fully dynamic weather, this title is an excellent showcase of what modern PC hardware can do.
Now that both AMD and NVIDIA have released drivers optimized for Forza 7, we've taken an opportunity to measure performance across an array of different GPUs. After some significant performance mishaps with last year's Forza Horizon 3 at launch on PC, we are excited to see if Forza Motorsport 7 brings any much-needed improvements.
For this testing, we used our standard GPU testbed, including an 8-core Haswell-E processor and plenty of memory and storage.
|PC Perspective GPU Testbed|
|Processor||Intel Core i7-5960X Haswell-E|
|Motherboard||ASUS Rampage V Extreme X99|
|Memory||G.Skill Ripjaws 16GB DDR4-3200|
|Storage||OCZ Agility 4 256GB (OS)
Adata SP610 500GB (games)
|Power Supply||Corsair AX1500i 1500 watt|
|OS||Windows 10 x64|
|Drivers||AMD: 17.10.1 (Beta)
As with a lot of modern console-first titles, Forza 7 defaults to "Dynamic" image quality settings. This means that the game engine is supposed to find the best image settings for your hardware automatically, and dynamically adjust them so that you hit a target frame rate (adjustable between 30 and 60fps) no matter what is going on in the current scene that is being rendered.
While this is a good strategy for consoles, and even for casual PC gamers, it poses a problem for us trying to measure equivalent performance across GPUs. Luckily the developers of Forza Motorsport 7, Turn 10 Studios, still let you disable the dynamic control and configure the image quality settings as you desire.
One quirk however though is that in order for V-Sync to be disabled, the rendering resolution within the game must match the native resolution of your monitor. This means that if you are running 2560x1440 on your 4K monitor, you must first set the resolution within windows to 2560x1440 in order to run the game in V-Sync off mode.
We did our testing with an array of three different resolutions (1080p, 1440p, and 4K) at maximum image quality settings. We tested both AMD and NVIDIA graphics cards in similar price and performance segments. The built-in benchmark mode for this game was used, which does feature some variance due to dynamic weather patterns. However, our testing within the full game matched the results of the benchmark mode closely, so we used it for our final results.
Right off the bat, I have been impressed at how well optimized Forza Motorsport 7 seems to be on the PC. Compared to the unoptimized disaster that was Forza Horizon 3 when it launched on PC last year, it's clear that Turn 10 Studios and Microsoft have come a long way.
Even gamers looking to play on a 4K display at 60Hz can seemingly get away with the cheaper, and more mainstream GPUs such as the RX 580 or the GTX 1060 with acceptable performance in most scenarios.
Games on high-refresh-rate displays don't appear to have the same luxury. If you want to game at a resolution such as 2560x1440 at a full 144Hz, neither the RX Vega 64 or GTX 1080 will do this with maximum image quality settings. Although these GPUs appear to be in the margin where you could turn down a few settings to achieve your full refresh rate.
For some reason, the RX Vega cards didn't seem to show any scaling in performance when moving from 2560x1440 to 1920x1080, unlike the Polaris-based RX 580 and the NVIDIA options. We aren't quite sure of the cause of this and have reached out to AMD for clarification.
As far as frame times are concerned, we also gathered some data with our Frame Rating capture analysis system.
Taking a look at the first chart, we can see while the GTX 1080 frame times are extremely consistent, the RX Vega 64 shows some additional variance.
However, the frame time variance chart shows that over 95% of the frame times of the RX Vega 64 come in at under 2ms of variance, which will still provide a smooth gameplay experience in most scenarios. This matches with our experience while playing on both AMD and NVIDIA hardware where we saw no major issues with gameplay smoothness.
Forza Motorsport 7 seems to be a great addition to the PC gaming world (if you don't mind using the Microsoft store exclusively) and will run great on a wide array of hardware. Whether or not you have a NVIDIA or AMD GPU, you should be able to enjoy this fantastic racing simulator.
Subject: Graphics Cards | September 12, 2017 - 03:12 PM | Jeremy Hellstrom
Tagged: Vega, ryzen 7, ryzen 5, ryzen, RX 580, RX 570, RX 560, ruby, repetition, quake champions, amd
Remember Ruby, that animated heroine ATI used in tech demos many years back? She has returned recently and is now playable in Quake Champions for those who claim their free key. In addition to appearing in the game, she is also the centre of attention in this announcement from AMD.
If you purchase a new Ryzen 5 or 7 APU, or a RX 560, 570 or 580 you can now claim the Champions pack for Quake Champions for free. The Champions pack will retail for $40 and add access to all current and future characters to your game, including a custom Ruby skin for Nyx. If you purchased one of these products after August 22nd you are eligible to claim your key over at AMDRewards. The contest will run until October 29th or until the keys run out.
Subject: Systems | June 12, 2017 - 07:00 PM | Sebastian Peak
Tagged: Threadripper, sli, ryzen, RX 580, PC, gtx 1080 ti, gaming, desktop, dell, crossfire, amd, alienware
Dell has revealed their new Alienware Area-51 gaming desktops featuring the latest high-performance AMD and Intel processors. We will begin with a look at the Alienware Area-51 Threadripper Edition, and Dell has an exclusive on pre-built systems using the new Ryzen Threadripper CPUs.
"Through 2017, Dell will be the exclusive OEM partner to deliver AMD Ryzen Threadripper pre-built systems to the market and the high-end 16-core will be factory-overclocked across all 16-cores and 32 logical threads. The Area-51 Threadripper Edition is ideal for customers who explore the world of mega-tasking, doing many system demanding tasks at the same time, and are looking for a complete, reliable solution from a trusted brand."
The systems are based on the X399 chipset and can be configured with either a 12-core/24-thread or 16-core/32-thread AMD Ryzen Threadripper processors, which are liquid-cooled in all configurations. Standard memory configurations begin with quad-channel 2667 MHz DDR4 up to 64GB, with 2933MHz HyperX memory up to the same quad-channel 64GB available. Graphics options begin with a choice between an NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1050 Ti or AMD Radeon RX 570, and max out at either dual GTX 1080 Ti or triple Radeon RX 580 cards.
Storage options include up to a 1TB M.2 PCIe SSD and 2TB 7200RPM SATA 6Gb/s HDD, and networking is handled by dual Killer E2500 Gigabit NICs and a choice of either Dell 1820 802.11ac 2x2 or Killer 1535 802.11ac 2x2 Wi-Fi. (A look at the other Area-51 desktop annoucement provides a more complete look at the rest of the general specifications - with a few chipset-related differences.)
Features from Dell/Alienware:
- Designed for Megatasking, game streaming and more, the new Area 51 Threadripper Edition is ready for today’s most demanding PC gaming enthusiast and supports high performance configurations with a chipset that enables up to 64 PCIe Gen 3 lanes.
- All configuration come standard with unlocked, factory-overclocked across all cores and liquid cooled AMD Ryzen Threadripper CPUs with Alienware's most powerful liquid cooling unit to date.
- Iconic triad high quality, uniquely engineered chassis built to deliver exceptional airflow, thermal management, and user ergonomics for daily use and future upgrades.
- Supports NVIDIA SLI and AMD Crossfire graphics technology, with dual and triple GPU options
- Introduces M.2 storage options to Area-51.
- Built for gaming enthusiast wanting the absolute best gaming performance played with a VR, 4k or 8k display
- Alienware Command Center includes AlienFX, AlienAdrenaline, AlienFusion, Thermal and Overclocking Controls
The Alienware Area-51 Threadripper Edition will be available beginning
June July 27, and pricing information is not yet announced.
Is it time to buy that new GPU?
Testing commissioned by AMD. This means that AMD paid us for our time, but had no say in the results or presentation of them.
Earlier this week Bethesda and Arkane Studios released Prey, a first-person shooter that is a re-imaging of the 2006 game of the same name. Fans of System Shock will find a lot to love about this new title and I have found myself enamored with the game…in the name of science of course.
While doing my due diligence and performing some preliminary testing to see if we would utilize Prey for graphics testing going forward, AMD approached me to discuss this exact title. With the release of the Radeon RX 580 in April, one of the key storylines is that the card offers a reasonably priced upgrade path for users of 2+ year old hardware. With that upgrade you should see some substantial performance improvements and as I will show you here, the new Prey is a perfect example of that.
Targeting the Radeon R9 380, a graphics card that was originally released back in May of 2015, the RX 580 offers substantially better performance at a very similar launch price. The same is true for the GeForce GTX 960: launched in January of 2015, it is slightly longer in the tooth. AMD’s data shows that 80% of the users on Steam are running on R9 380X or slower graphics cards and that only 10% of them upgraded in 2016. Considering the great GPUs that were available then (including the RX 480 and the GTX 10-series), it seems more and more likely that we going to hit an upgrade inflection point in the market.
A simple experiment was setup: does the new Radeon RX 580 offer a worthwhile upgrade path for those many users of R9 380 or GTX 960 classifications of graphics cards (or older)?
|Radeon RX 580||Radeon R9 380||GeForce GTX 960|
|GPU||Polaris 20||Tonga Pro||GM206|
|Rated Clock||1340 MHz||918 MHz||1127 MHz|
|TDP||185 watts||190 watts||120 watts|
|MSRP (at launch)||$199 (4GB)
Subject: Graphics Cards | May 1, 2017 - 02:47 PM | Jeremy Hellstrom
Tagged: amd, RX 580, RX 580 8GB GTS Black Edition, factory overclocked, xfx
Overclockers Club takes a look at XFX's new RX 580, inside and out as they completely removed the cooler to let you see all the parts. The card does come overclocked right out of the box, however OCC pushed the card further, hitting 1440MHz on the GPU and 2116MHz for the memory. That result fell short of the Powercolor Golden Sample card they tested but is still not bad, as XFX is not charging much of a premium over the reference model. Pop by to see the full results.
"XFX's RX 580 8GB GTS Black Edition card is a factory overclocked card that uses a TrueClock OC of 1405MHz on the core right out of the gate with an OC+ core clock of 1425MHz possible. A total of 8GB of high speed GDDR5 memory is used to handle the textures to make 2560 x 1440 the new resolution target."
Here are some more Graphics Card articles from around the web:
- Sapphire Pulse Radeon RX 580 8GB @ eTeknix
- The Red Devil RX 570 vs. the EVGA GTX 1060 3GB Overclocking Showdown @ BabelTechReviews
- Sapphire Pulse Radeon RX 570 4GB @ eTeknix
- NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1080 Ti: Windows 10 Creators Update vs. Ubuntu Linux Gaming @ Phoronix
- MSI GTX 1080 Ti Armor 11G Review @ OCC
- ASUS RoG STRIX GTX 1080 Ti 11GB @ eTeknix
- ASUS GeForce GTX 1060 OC 6GB 9Gbps Edition @ eTeknix
Subject: Graphics Cards | April 25, 2017 - 03:11 AM | Tim Verry
Tagged: sapphire, RX 580, RX 550, pulse, Polaris, nitro+, GCN
Earlier this month Sapphire announced a new budget-oriented series of graphics cards it calls PULSE. The new series slides in below the premium Nitro+ series to offer cheaper graphics cards that retain many of the high-quality hardware components but lack the flashy extras on the coolers, come in at lower factory overclocks, and have fewer PCI-E power inputs which, in theory, means lower overclocking headroom. The new graphics cards series is currently made up of five Polaris-based GPUs: the Sapphire Pulse RX 580, RX 570, RX 570 ITX, and RX 550.
According to Sapphire, Pulse graphics cards use many of the high-end components as the Nitro+ cards including Black Diamond Chokes 4, long lasting capacitors, fuse protection. And intelligent fan control. The new graphics cards have aluminum backplates, removeable Quick Connect fans with semi-passive cooling technology that allows the fans to turn off when the card is under light load. The RX 580 and RX 570 use Dual-X coolers and the RX 570 ITX and RX 550 use single fan shrouded coolers.
Compared to Nitro+, the coolers are a bit less flashy and there are no Nitro+ Glow LEDs. If you are not a fan of bling or do not have a windowed case, the Pulse cards might save you a bit of money while getting you most of the performance if Sapphire’s claims are accurate.
Speaking of performance, the Pulse branded graphics cards are factory overclocked, just not as much. The Sapphire Pulse RX 580 with its 2,304 cores comes with a boost clock of 1366 MHz, the RX 570 and RX 570 ITX come with GPU boost clocks of 1,284 MHz and 1,244 MHz respectively, and the RX 550 has a boost clock of 1,206 MHz. Memory clocks sit at 8,000 MHz for the RX 580 and 7,000 MHz for the remaining Pulse cards (RX 570, RX 570 ITX, and RX 550).
Along with the introduction of its new Pulse series of graphics cards, Sapphire has entered a “strategic partnership” with motherboard manufacturer Asrock. The new graphics cards are shipping now and will be available at retailers shortly. Pricing for the RX 550 isn’t available, but prices for the other cards has appeared online as follows: Pulse RX 580 8GB for $229.99, Pulse RX 580 4GB for $199.99, Pulse RX 570 for $179.99, Pulse RX 570 ITX for $169.99.
In all, the Pulse cards appear to be about $20 cheaper than the Nitro+ variant. We will have to wait and see if those prices hold up once retailers get stock in.