Being the major sponsor of the PC presentation yesterday, it's natural for AMD to show off new hardware. And show off hardware they did, with the AMD CEO holding up the Radeon RX 470 and RX 460 GPUs.
They didn't show any hard data about the smaller Polaris boards, but after the conference they did.
We've finally got more raw data about the specs of the GPUs using AMD's Polaris 10 and 11 chips. AMD had previously revealed that the Radeon RX 480 had 38 compute units (CUs), a 256-bit memory bus, DisplayPort 1.3/1.4 support, HDMI 2.0b support, 4GB/8GB models, and over 5 teraflops of computing performance.
None of that is new, but what was interesting in the release was the extra details provided about the RX 470. Read the fine print on this slide:
In case you can't zoom in further, here's the paragraph about the comparison between the RX 470 and the R9 270X:
Testing conducted by AMD Performance Labs as of May 10, 2016 on the AMD Radeon™ RX 470 (110w) and AMD Radeon™ R9 270X (180w), on a test system comprising i7 5960X @ 3.0 GHz 16GB memory, AMD Radeon Software driver 16.20 and Windows 10. Using 3DMark Fire Strike preset 1080p the scores were 9090 and 5787 respectively.
Using Ashes of the Singularity 1080P High, the scores were 46 fps and 28.1 fps respectively. Using Hitman 1080p High, the scores were 60 fps and 27.6 fps respectively. Using Overwatch 1080p Max settings, the scores were 121 fps and 76 fps respectively.
Using Performance/Board power, the resulting average across the 4 different titles was a [performance] per watt of 2.8X vs the Radeon R9 270X.
The Fire Strike preset scores are also interesting. The default card in our office benchmarking PC is a Radeon R9 390X 8GB model from MSI. It's a decent medium-range performer and a solid card for gaming at 1080p. It scored 11641 in Fire Strike (averaged over 3 tests), although I'm running the latest version of the Crimson software (16.6.1) and the 470 isn't supposed to be a like for like replacement for the 390X.
AMD stressed in the fine print that the result wasn't an average, but it's good enough to at least give people an indication of where the card sits in the GPU hierarchy. Guru3D took AMD's result, and slotted it into a table comparing it against just about everything else most people have:
I remember dropping $700 each on two NVIDIA GTX 780s when they launched, and it's nice to know that I'll be able to get slightly better performance now from a card retailing for around $US149.
Actually, that's kind of ridiculous when you put it like that. And it gets even more ridiculous when you consider how much it costs for everything around the RX 470. A R9 290X costs just over $400 for a 4GB model, but the better overclocked models will set you back $500 or even $600. AMD's only charging $US200 for the R9 480, and it would be staggering if the Australian price for those were higher than $500.
It's all adding up to an incredibly interesting last six months of the year. NVIDIA's targeting the top end of the market, while AMD is gunning very, very hard for the chunk of gamers playing on low to mid-range PCs, largely at 1080p.
Don't forget that the NDA on AMD's pre-Computex event expires at the end of this month. As we get closer to that date, expect more hard info — and benchmarks — to come out.