AMD Allows Two Early R9 290X Benchmarks

Subject: General Tech, Graphics Cards | October 17, 2013 - 04:37 PM |
Tagged: radeon, R9 290X, amd

The NDA on AMD R9 290X benchmarks has not yet lifted but AMD was in Montreal to provide two previews: BioShock Infinite and Tomb Raider, both at 4K (3840 x 2160). Keep in mind, these scores are provided by AMD and definitely does not represent results from our monitor-capture solution. Expect more detailed results from us, later, as we do some Frame Rating.

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The test machine used in both setups contains:

  • Intel Core i7-3960X at 3.3 GHz
  • MSI X79A-GD65
  • 16GB of DDR3-1600
  • Windows 7 SP1 64-bit
  • NVIDIA GeForce GTX 780 (331.40 drivers) / AMD Radeon R9 290X (13.11 beta drivers)

The R9 290X is configured in its "Quiet Mode" during both benchmarks. This is particularly interesting, to me, as I was unaware of such feature (it has been a while since I last used a desktop AMD/ATi card). I would assume this is a fan and power profile to keep noise levels as silent as possible for some period of time. A quick Google search suggests this feature is new with the Radeon Rx200-series cards.

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BioShock Infinite is quite demanding at 4K with ultra quality settings. Both cards maintain an average framerate above 30FPS.

AMD R9 290X "Quiet Mode": 44.25 FPS

NVIDIA GeForce GTX 780: 37.67 FPS

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(Update 1: 4:44pm EST) AMD confirmed TressFX is disabled in these benchmark scores. It, however, is enabled if you are present in Montreal to see the booth. (end of update 1)

Tomb Raider is also a little harsh at those resolutions. Unfortunately, the results are ambiguous whether or not TressFX has been enabled throughout the benchmarks. The summary explicitly claims TressFX is enabled, while the string of settings contains "Tressfx=off". Clearly, one of the two entries is a typo. We are currently trying to get clarification. In the mean time:

AMD R9 290X "Quiet Mode": 40.2 FPS

NVIDIA GeForce GTX 780: 34.5 FPS

Notice how both of these results are not compared to a GeForce Titan. Recent leaks suggest a retail price for AMD's flagship card in the low-$700 market. The GeForce 780, on the other hand, resides in the $650-700 USD price point.

It seems pretty clear, to me, that cost drove this comparison rather than performance.

Source: AMD

October 17, 2013 | 05:24 PM - Posted by Anonymous (not verified)

Why would you compare a Titan? The damn thing costs twice as much

October 17, 2013 | 08:28 PM - Posted by Anonymous (not verified)

damn right. but as amd said. it can exchange blows with the titan. meaning, it can be on par or better than gtx 780 at a lower price point. i smell price drops ^_^

October 17, 2013 | 11:29 PM - Posted by Penterax (not verified)

Yes, because 2X700=1000

Is this, like, the new, new math?

October 18, 2013 | 12:07 AM - Posted by tuklap

I think having 2 r9 290x in your system will outrun titan with huge margin

October 18, 2013 | 09:51 PM - Posted by Anonymous Coward (not verified)

Maybe if you count the runt frames, or the frames not displayed at all...

October 19, 2013 | 05:20 PM - Posted by Apocalypse (not verified)

Have you read anything on the issue of frame variance in the last 3 months?
Problem solved on single-monitors, and at the rumors say it has been solved on eyefinity for the 290 and 290x as well, as they have removed the bridge for that very reasons. Though that are rumors and has not been tested so far in reviews, unlike the single monitor driver solution.

October 17, 2013 | 06:43 PM - Posted by Chefbenito (not verified)

Because its their fastest single gpu that's why. Titan is 1k so only maybe 30% more $ and probably more than that % faster.

So @ 4k in one game its barely better than nvidias aging x80 card. AMD really sad these days, also NV is crazy for selling 780s for 600 dollars. An oC'd 680 w 4g is 350 or less on ebay.

October 17, 2013 | 07:11 PM - Posted by Daniel Nielsen (not verified)

Thats the biggest mess of words i have seen in a long time, good job.

October 17, 2013 | 06:52 PM - Posted by Anonymous (not verified)

I really like what I see here but still feel that amd should at least get us some benchmark on other games at lower resolutions like 2560x1440. I'm tempting on buying 2x R9-280x and then overclock both to make it better for my resolution but if I remember they said that the 7990 will still be top end card so this can't be better than that.

October 17, 2013 | 07:12 PM - Posted by Daniel Nielsen (not verified)

Yeah lower resolution benchmarks will be nice to see. Personally i like to see 1080p benchmarks, but i guess i will in due time.

October 17, 2013 | 08:25 PM - Posted by SteeloYangster

I would imagine that AMD compared the R9-290x with the GTX 780 because that's probably the price point that they're shooting for and not necessarily based on performance. Especially with all the talk that they've been saying about "Not shooting for $1000 cards." I believe this means that AMD is probably going to be trying to beat the GTX 780 by at least $50 (Or by $150 hopefully.) Either way they have my full and undivided attention even if it's just in hopes that Nvidia will lower their prices to beat/meat AMD's prices.

October 17, 2013 | 08:31 PM - Posted by Anonymous (not verified)

I just hope amd can stand on what they said during gpu14 event. R9 290x beats Titan. that is without OC or any other tweaking. just stock. otherwise, they are really misleading us. but the price drop that they will offer will definitely be a winner ^_^

October 17, 2013 | 09:01 PM - Posted by Whaaat (not verified)

"Tomb Raider is also a little harsh at those ridiculous." are you missing the world resolutions? please fix urgently.

October 17, 2013 | 09:08 PM - Posted by Scott Michaud

I have no clue how such a typo occured. o.O LibreOffice autocomplete???

October 18, 2013 | 03:52 AM - Posted by arbiter

funny how its 2 AMD titles they let data out for and also 2 titles it wins win? On top of that why only 2? I would bet tressfx is on. its thier tech they know don't run well on nvidia cards and would slow it down. I don't really trust benchmarks released by the maker of the card, I rather wait and see what 3rd party reviewers, ones NOT on AMD's direct payroll like PcPer here to do separate testing.

October 18, 2013 | 05:27 PM - Posted by Anonymous (not verified)

"Official AMD Radeon R9 290X 2160p performance in 17 games"

Soon we will see reviews at 1080p, 1440p, 1600p and 2160p against GTX 780 and Titan.

NVidia fans stop making excuses and just concentrate on facts or data.

October 18, 2013 | 09:59 PM - Posted by Anonymous Coward (not verified)

Hey, speaking of selective 'facts' and 'data', didn't AMD do this exact same shit two years ago with the 7970 "previews"? Some people were pissed when they found out the whole truth. Keep in mind this was before the driver changes that dramatically increased 7000 series performance.

I'm willing to bet this new 290X card will be the same fucking story as the 7970. Marginally faster than Nvidia's top card that's been on the market for the better part of a year, and priced like they just invented the first graphics accelerator.

Then a handful of AMD fanboys spend their life savings on buying this garbage, often in crossfire, just so for once in their life they can go on forums and say their AMD solution is marginally faster than anything Nvidia has. Even if that comes almost a year late and with more noise than a hair dryer. Even if half those frames (or more!) don't even render, depending on Crossfire configuration.

October 18, 2013 | 10:27 PM - Posted by Anonymous (not verified)

Exactly, not to mention that even in the best case, how much faster will the 290X be than the 7970? What kind of performance increase are we looking at after TWO YEARS? Less than 50% performance increase in 2 years, and a higher price to boot.

Pardon me for not buying the whole "AMD is an industry innovator" and "AMD cares about your wallet" mantra.

I almost puked at all the tech sites jumping all over themselves to publish "reviews" of the "200 series lineup". What the fuck is there to review? They are the same damn cards from the 7000 series, with different names. 290/290X are the only new cards, and they ain't here yet.

What a bunch of bull.

Ryan, if you're not screaming loud and clear that this is bullshit, you're pissing your integrity away. I will carefully look for you and your crew's enthusiasm in the next podcast or whenever you discuss the upcoming 290X review with the rest of the crew. When you guys talk about what this new performance means to you, keep in mind the performance available 2 years ago from the same company for a lot less money.

October 19, 2013 | 08:07 AM - Posted by Anonymous (not verified)

NVidia boys, results from Tom's Hardware:

"We’re only able to show you R9 290X compared to GeForce GTX 780, and only at 3840x2160. But despite those limitations, these numbers were run in our lab, on our own equipment."

October 19, 2013 | 04:36 PM - Posted by Anonymous (not verified)

This picture is worth a thousand words:

"Nvidia claim the GTX 780 TI is their most powerful card to date"

An impressive video showcasing BF4 at 4K resolution, which needs four Nvidia GeForce Titan cards to work.

"Battlefield 4 running at 4K resolution on (4 Nvidia GTX Titans = $3999.96)"

Asus and EVGA GTX titan cards are list at $999.99 on newegg.

NVidia GTX 780 price range from $649.99 to $819.99 on newegg:

Within the next 2 weeks, we will see the prices and performances of R9 290X/290 against NVidia GTX 780 and GTX Titan at different resolutions.

The point is NVidia is feeling the heat...

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