AMD Taunts Nvidia Over Latest Graphics Card Controversy

AMD Taunts Nvidia Over Latest Graphics Card Controversy

Of the few remaining Video Game Brand Battles, the AMD vs Nvidia fight might be my favourite. The two graphics companies often take small swipes at each other, and usually with less restraint than console or game manufacturers.

The latest shot comes from AMD, in an update they posted to Facebook (via NeoGAF):

AMD Taunts Nvidia Over Latest Graphics Card Controversy

970 minutes might seem like an unusually long amount of time for a promotion like this, but that's the joke. The post is a riff on the recent discovery by posters on the Nvidia and Guru3D forums (well-summarized on reddit) that Nvidia's widely praised GTX 970 graphics card, which boasts a meaty 4GB of memory, encounters trouble when it uses more than 3.5GB of that memory.

PC Gamer has posted a technical breakdown of the issue and Nvidia's various responses, which get into hardware differences between the 970 and Nvidia's more expensive, more powerful top-end card, the GTX 980. The short version is: The 970 is still a generally speedy card, but due to limitations in how it transfers data, it doesn't use its full memory bandwidth to the same extent as the 980. Because of that, it's harder to argue that the 970 is truly a "4GB card" in the way that most PC gamers assumed it was based on the card's marketing and packaging.

The thing I like about this kind of sniping is how it inevitably comes back to bite the snipers in the arse. It seems like only a matter of time until AMD screws up and Nvidia comes in, all smiles, to score some cheap points of their own. For now, though, AMD's drawn the most recent blood.


    The typical dodgy marketing a nVidia has bit them in the arse with their 4gb stint. It is a bit more dishonest than usual for the green team so I think AMD gets a far middle finger for this.
    All in fun. Sega do what Nintendon't.

      Dodgy marketing? What? They explained that it WAS 4 GB and cleared up the confusion. It wasn't dodgy marketing.

        3.5 GB of RAM with slightly reduced performance from a fully enabled GM204 chip and then 0.5 GB of RAM with heavily reduced performance (and less ). It's fantastic that Nvidia are able to more finely isolate inoperative sections on Maxwell chips, and thus gain more performance than if they had to disable larger portions of the chip, but it's wrong to simply state that we're dealing with a "4 GB" card, and implying that there is performance parity in this respect.

    This is dissapointing.

    I'm not a fanboy of anything. This is dodgy marketing

      To be clear, the full 4GB of memory is addressable and usable. Because of the crossbar port design in the memory area, software using between 3.5GB and 4GB of memory suffers a performance hit for data stored specifically in the last 500MB with a hit of around 60%. Overall performance for software utilising the full 4GB of RAM is only around 5%. Software using 3.5GB or less is completely unaffected.

      It's something that should have been covered correctly in technical marketing, but overall it's not that bad a performance hit and it only applies in situations where more than 3.5GB of VRAM is consumed. In terms of cost for performance, the 970 is still quite a good value card, though personally I only use the 80 series when I buy Nvidia cards.

      Fully agree that marketing material should cover the existence of this issue, of course.

      Last edited 31/01/15 7:56 pm

      not dodgy marketing at all. and as an nvidia customer, i fully welcome these stunts. The GTX 970 issue needs to get some coverage, as nvidia will not even acknowledge it exists.

      lets forget about the fact that its technically only a 3,5gb card (4gb is addressable, but anything that tries to address the final 0.5gb gets about a 60-80% performance drop). The cards stutter insanely on most older games. I tried to run Duke Nukem 3d Megaton Edition yesterday, and quit after 60 seconds because of the severity of the stuttering. Its not a sub-60 fps issue clearly, the frame rates are well above 60...

      there is an actual hardware problem with the 970's, and nvidia isnt even acknowledging it the literally hundreds of forum threads (some with well over 200 pages!).

      so yeah i kind of want amd to take the piss out of them and maybe then they might try to save themselves the embarrassment.

    This video basically sums it up quite nicely

    what are the laws in Australia for this?

    I have 2 970's that are at least 2 months old, the place I bought them from wont take them back, they say they are working as intended. Asus say the same thing. and Nvidia keep trying to tell me they are still fast cards. (not at 4K SLI) they aren't lol they stutter into oblivion, complete screen corruption and coil whine up the razoo. which I was going to let slide until I found out I was lied to and given 1/2 the cache 1/2 the rops kinda pushed me over into the red. And I'm a Race car and NV's got me in the red... I could blow!.......

    Last edited 02/02/15 1:13 am

      They need to work as intended/advertised. If they don't the place you bought them from has to accept returns - by law. They get to choose whether they will replace or refund you though. Although since they all suck, a replacement wouldn't go down too well would it.

      Stores are also not allowed to palm off warranty claims. If it is within warranty, you can return to the store for them to deal with.

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