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Colorful is aiming to become second largest GPU vendor

Most people would think that ASUS or MSI would lead the pack as the largest GPU vendor, but it's actually Palit Microsystems (who also owns Gainward). Well, Colorful wants to compete at a much higher level, so the company is set to increase its shipments to over 500,000 per month this year, reports DigiTimes.

 

colorful-aiming-become-second-largest-gpu-vendor_02

 

Colorful is also amping up its motherboard business, so it won't just be the GPU business that will scale going into the future. DigiTimes reports that the overall demand for video card sales has dropped, but the demand in China is still quite strong. GPU shipments for China are sitting at a very healthy 16-17 million units for 2015, with China accounting for a huge 50% of the total global GPU shipments.

 

The Chinese market is dominated by Colorful, Galaxy and ZOTAC with Colorful set to ship 500,000 units per month for 2015. Galaxy is hoping to ship somewhere between 400,000 and 500,000 units per month, with projected sales of 5 million for Colorful and Galaxy. ZOTAC is expected to ship 3 million units this year, with ASUS shipping around 5 million across the year. GIGABYTE will be shipping around 3.6 million units while MSI will be pushing out around 2.9 million units for 2015.

AMD Radeon R9 390X spotted without HBM, in an 8GB GDDR5 version

Something we talked about a few weeks ago now looks to be true: AMD will release two versions of its Radeon R9 390X. One of them will rock the next-gen HBM, while another will use the standard GDDR5 VRAM. WCCFTech is reporting that they noticed some juicy news on the ASUS forums, with the following units:

 

amd-radeon-r9-390x-spotted-without-hbm-8gb-gddr5-version_03

 

  • ASUS R9390X-DC2-8GD5
  • ASUS STRIX-R9380-OC-2GD5
  • ASUS STRIX-R9370-OC-4GD5
  • ASUS STRIX-R7360X-DC2OC2-2GD5
  • ASUS R7360-2GD5

 

What we do think this means, is that AMD will release a Radeon R9 390X with 4GB of HBM, while the 8GB version will rock GDDR5. We've heard through our industry sources that HBM is experiencing seriously low yields, which will stop AMD from slapping 8GB of HBM onto the cards. This move will allow AMD to sell more R9 390X cards as they'll only be using 4GB of HBM, versus 8GB of High Bandwidth Memory.

 

The bigger question is: will the Radeon R9 390X be enough to compete against the GM200-powered NVIDIA GeForce GTX 980 Ti? What time of performance leap are we to expect from the HBM-powered R9 390X, over the nearly two-year-old R9 290X?

Leaked benchmarks on AMD Radeon R9 390X see it beating the Titan X

As we get closer to the official announcement and launch of the Radeon R9 390X from AMD, all we have to enjoy for now are leaked benchmarks that show the "Fiji XT" card beating out the GeForce GTX Titan X, barely.

 

leaked-benchmarks-amd-radeon-r9-390x-see-beating-titan_11

 

With its super-fast HBM, the AMD Radeon R9 390X beats out the NVIDIA GeForce GTX Titan X, the unreleased and expected GTX 980 Ti, and every other single GPU solution from NVIDIA in the average scores from 19 benchmarks according to a leaked look at the next-gen card from AMD.

 

When it comes to power consumption, it looks like AMD's next-gen Fiji architecture and High Bandwidth Memory aren't enough to save it from the perils of high power consumption. The leaked benchmarks show that the R9 390X uses 289W of power, which is just 3W away from the R9 290X which is quite the consumer of power. Comparing this to the Titan X which uses 256W, and the GTX 980 Ti which uses 235W, AMD is once again consuming a large amount of power in order to beat NVIDIA.

 

leaked-benchmarks-amd-radeon-r9-390x-see-beating-titan_12

 

These are of course leaked results, so we can expect a better look from the R9 390X, and the GTX 980 Ti when they're both officially released.

Johan Andersson, Frostbite engineer, teases AMD Radeon R9 390X

We know it's coming, but we've just seen an 'official' shot of the Radeon R9 390X courtesy of Johan Andersson, the engineer behind the Frostbite engine over at DICE.

 

johan-andersson-frostbite-engineer-teases-amd-radeon-r9-390x_01

 

Andersson posted the image to his Twitter account, where he said: "This new island is one seriously impressive and sweet GPU. wow & thanks @AMDRadeon ! They will be put to good use :)". So now we can look at the previous rumor and render of the Radeon R9 390X that WCCFTech posted not too long ago, with this card looking absolutely identical to the render.

 

AMD should release its HBM-powered Radeon R9 390X in the coming weeks.

NVIDIA GeForce GTX 980 Ti should have 6GB GDDR5, release imminent

With AMD on the verge of unveiling its new Fiji XT-based Radeon R9 390X powered by HBM, NVIDIA isn't just waiting around sitting on its hands. NVIDIA is reporting preparing to roll out its new GM200-based GeForce GTX 980 Ti, with 6GB of GDDR5.

 

nvidia-geforce-gtx-980-ti-6gb-gddr5-release-imminent_05

 

NVIDIA's rumored GeForce GTX 980 Ti will be made from feature the GM200 GPU, the same one that was found in the Titan X, except that the 980 Ti will feature 6GB of framebuffer, versus the 12GB found on Titan X. As for pricing, WCCFTech's source had it listed at around $954 USD, but we should expect NVIDIA to release it much cheaper than that, especially to compete against AMD.

 

After the price, the second big question is: when will the GeForce GTX 980 Ti arrive? Rumors have pegged NVIDIA at releasing a new product before Computex, but then there's some that say during Computex, and even into July. NVIDIA has the power of waiting right now, especially with NVIDIA owning 76% of the discrete GPU market.

AMD's Catalyst 15.5 drivers coming soon for Project Cars, Witcher 3

With the impending launch of the Radeon R9 390X, AMD has just announced that they plan on fixing the HairWorks performance in The Witcher 3 through their Catalyst Control Center. AMD has also said that they will soon be releasing their Catalyst 15.5 drivers that will increase performance in both The Witcher 3, and Project Cars.

 

amds-catalyst-15-5-drivers-coming-soon-project-cars-witcher-3_06

 

AMD has said that in order to improve HairWorks performance in The Witcher 3, you should reduce the tessellation level in Catalyst Control Center. This is found in the 3D Application Settings part of the CCC, where you should reduce it to 8x.

 

When it comes to new drivers, AMD has said: "AMD is committed to improving performance for the recently-released Project CARS and The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt. To that end, we are creating AMD Catalyst 15.5 Beta to optimize performance for these titles, and we will continue to work closely with their developers to improve quality and performance. We will release AMD Catalyst 15.5 Beta on our website as soon as it is available".

AMD Radeon R9 390X to include 4GB of HBM, with a reported MSRP of $849

According to the latest rumors, we should expect the Radeon R9 390X to launch with 4GB of HBM, while a dual-GPU version of the Fiji XT-based card will arrive with 8GB of HBM. For those who have been keeping up, this is a very, very interesting move, if the rumors are true. If you want to catch up on how revolutionary HBM will be, we wrote a detailed piece on High Bandwidth Memory yesterday.

 

amd-radeon-r9-390x-include-4gb-hbm-reported-msrp-849_08

 

Fudzilla is reporting from "insider sources" that AMD will launch the Radeon R9 390X with 4GB of HBM for an MSRP of around $849, while the dual-GPU version of the card, which should arrive as the Radeon R9 395X2, will include 8GB of HBM. The Radeon R9 395X2 (that's what we're calling it for now, this could change at any moment) should arrive sometime later in the year, or 2016 - depending on HBM yields, I'd say.

 

The sources stated that AMD had plans to launch the Radeon R9 390X with a price of $799, but this is no longer the case. The sources also added that the R9 390X will be competing directly against the NVIDIA GeForce GTX Titan X, which launched at $999 and is still around the $999 mark on Amazon still. According to Fudzilla's sources, the HBM-powered Radeon R9 390X will win in some benchmarks, and lose in others against the GDDR5-based Titan X.

 

Then we have to consider the VRAM here, with the R9 390X featuring 4GB of HBM. With AMD launching a new architecture and some super-exciting, next-generation memory on it, I'm surprised to see only 4GB of VRAM. On one hand, AMD will get killed in marketing against NVIDIA and the 12GB of framebuffer found on the Titan X, but even at 4K, most games don't use over 4GB of VRAM. I would've expected AMD to launch the Radeon R9 390X in two flavors: 4GB HBM and 8GB HBM priced at $100-$150 apart. Second, the R9 395X2 will only have 4GB of VRAM - with 4GB of HBM per GPU, which can't be combined - that is, until DirectX 12 arrives with Windows 10.

 

We should know concrete details on the Radeon R9 390X in the next few weeks, with its launch to take place in the second half of next month.

NVIDIA releases GeForce Game Ready 352.86 WHQL drivers

NVIDIA has just released the new GeForce Game Ready 352.86 WHQL drivers which are ready for The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt, with the drivers available through NVIDIA's website, or through GeForce Experience.

 

nvidia-releases-geforce-game-ready-352-86-whql-drivers_02

 

The new drivers feature an updated SLI profile for The Witcher 3, as well as support for NVIDIA technologies such as Dynamic Super Resolution (DSR), GameStream, GeForce Experience one-click Optimal Playable Settings, G-Sync, HairWorks, HBAO+, PhysX, and of course, SLI. The GeForce Game Ready 352.86 WHQL drivers also feature new or updated SLI profiles for the following games:

 

  • Magicka 2 - Added DirectX 11 SLI profile
  • Sid Meier's Civilization: Beyond Earth - Updated DirectX 11 SLI profile
  • The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt - Updated DirectX 11 SLI profile
  • World of Warships - Added DirectX 9 SLI profile

AMD to rebrand Hawaii-based cards as Radeon R9 300 series, coming soon

According to VideoCardz.com, we should expect rebranded AMD Radeon R9 200 series cards based on the Hawaii architecture to arrive next month with a disguise, as the Radeon R9 300 series.

 

amd-rebrand-hawaii-based-cards-radeon-r9-300-series-coming-soon_01

 

While the HBM-based Radeon R9 390X will arrive in two flavors: 4GB and 8GB (and maybe one model with GDDR5 and another with HBM), there will be other Radeon R9 300 series cards based on the Hawaii architecture. These should arrive as the Radeon R9 385, and R9 380 - but those specifics could change. But these new cards will feature slightly higher Core Clocks, and a nice jump on Memory speeds.

 

The Radeon R9 290X has a Core Clock of 1GHz, but the new R9 300 series rebrand will have 2816 stream processors, while its Core set at 1050MHz, a 50MHz jump. The Memory Clock on the other hand, jumps from the 1250MHz found on the R9 290X, to 1500MHz on the new cards, according to VideoCardz.com. This will give that particular card based on the Hawaii XT GPU around 384GB/sec of memory bandwidth, up from the 320GB on the R9 290X.

 

The second rebrand will use the Hawaii PRO architecture, which is what makes the Radeon R9 290 stand up and perform. The new Radeon R9 3xx card will feature 2560 stream processors along with its stock Core Clocks of 947MHz, it will be pumped up to 1010MHz on the new card. The Memory Clock also jumps from 1250MHz to 1500MHz providing the same 384GB/sec of memroy bandwidth across its 512-bit memory bus.

TSMC teases that 16nm FinFET will deliver 40% performance improvement

TSMC has come out swinging lately, teasing that the shift into 16nm FinFET is going to be quite big for GPUs. The Taiwanese manufacturer said that the move from 28nm to 16nm, and in particular, the 16nm FinFET+ process, will deliver around 40% more performance.

 

tsmc-teases-16nm-finfet-deliver-40-performance-improvement_04

 

This 40% improvement in performance will not consume any additional power, which should have both NVIDIA and AMD smiling from ear to ear. This means if they were to spin up an NVIDIA GeForce GTX Titan X on 16nm FinFET+ and have the same performance, it would consume 50% less power. Alternatively, for the same power, they would be able to cram in a huge 40% performance gain. Impressive stuff, shrinking down to 16nm.

 

TSMC will begin volume production of its 16nm FinFET in Q3 2015, which means we could expect the first GPUs based on the smaller node towards the end of the year, or early 2016. We are predicting that flagship GPUs released from this new 16nm process will be, at an absolute minimum 30-40% faster, all while using the same power draw of around 200-250W. Along with HBM, we could see some serious improvements of 80-100% over the flagship cards we see today. HBM2 (something we saw at NVIDIA's GTC 2015) is due next year, with 1.2TB/sec of memory bandwidth, up from the 640GB/sec that we should see on the AMD Radeon R9 390X, and a big gain from the $999 Titan X and its 336GB/sec.

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