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It's hard to have enough screen real estate to do everything that we want. And gaming across multiple monitors helps to engage the player all the more. This is why AMD created Eyefinity. Moreover, this is why today PowerColor released the only HD 7870 graphics card that supports up to 6 monitors using Eyefinity technology.
The HD 7870 Eyefinity 6 supports up to 6 monitors via its six mini display ports onboard. The graphics card comes clocked with a 1000MHz core clock with a 1200MHz memory clock. It sports 2GB of memory on a 256-bit bus. And being a 7000 series card, it supports DirectX 11.1 so that all of the eye candy is available.
AMD have now announced that they won't be supporting Radeon HD 4000 series and below in Windows 8. Most people will read this and be shocked, but the GPUs are old now and Windows 8 by the time it comes out, will be considered a 2013 release.
Windows should ship with some form of support for legacy Radeon cards, but AMD themselves won't be providing future driver updates for those GPUs. AMD have made this quite clear in their press release:
Also with regards to Windows 8 support for the AMD Radeon HD 2000, 3000, 4000 Series of products; the In-the-box AMD Graphics driver that ships with Windows 8 will include support for the AMD Radeon HD 2000, 3000, and 4000 Series, and it will support the WDDM 1.1 driver level features. The AMD Catalyst driver for Windows 8 will only include support for WDDM 1.2 support products (AMD Radeon HD 5000 and later).
We know Team Green are ready to launch their dual-GPU Kepler card, the GEFORCE GTX 690, but where are Team Red and their Radeon HD 7990? If current rumblings are to be believed, we should expect AMD to unveil the Radeon HD 7990 at Computex 2012 in Taipei.
This is only 6 weeks away, which means if NVIDIA drop the GTX 690 ball in between now and then, NVIDIA will have four weeks of people talking about their product, building hype and what not. But, it gives AMD four weeks to re-tweak their GPU and have it ready to open up a can of red whoop ass on NVIDIA, hopefully.
The HD 7990 is expected to sport two full HD 7970 GPUs onto a single PCB. It should also have 6GB of GDDR5 baked into it, as well as 4096 GCN cores, and the ability to run 6-screen Eyefinity setups right out of the box. We will be at Computex in force this year, and will have as much news as we can of this new Red Beast. Hopefully it'll punch all other GPUs in the nuts, again.
I love it when companies throw jabs back and forth in marketing. The latest example of this is NVIDIA claiming that "GeForce puts the Ultra in Ultrabook." While I do tend to agree with NVIDIA that Ultrabooks need some sort of discrete graphics option, I'm not sure that I would be calling out Intel's Ivy Bridge quite yet. They did, after all, do a lot of work on the graphics processor.
But, then again, when has a big company taken my advice before? Well, I guess they would have to ask for it first. But I digress, NVIDIA is right that Intel's graphics are still pretty poor in comparison to NVIDIA's or AMD's offerings. The HD4000 graphics of Ivy Bridge can only handle around 43% of current games whereas a lowly GT640M can handle 100%.
It seems as though Intel is taking this in stride. After all, they do acknowledge that enthusiasts and gamers will still want a discrete GPU. It's good that they will let NVIDIA make fun of their new Ultrabook spec. Maybe, if enough people agree, they will change the spec to include a small descrete GPU.
Never settle. That's AMD's motto for their new Radeon HD 7900M series of GPUs for notebooks. In terms of specs, the Radeon HD 7970M nearly meets what the desktop Radeon HD 7870 GPU, except for slightly lower GPU core clock speeds.
The HD 7970M sports 1280 Graphics CoreNext stream processors, 80 TMUs, 32 ROPs, and a 256-bit wide GDDR5 memory interface which features 2GB of memory. Core clocks are at 850MHz, with 1200MHz (4.8GHz effective) GDDR5 memory clocks which push out 153.6GB/sec memory bandwidth.
The Radeon HD 7970M also features something called AMD Enduro Technology which "seamlessly powers down" the GPU when it's not required, to below even 1W. The HD 7970M should be seen baked into notebooks over the coming days.
There are some rumors floating around that Nvidia could be announcing the newest member of the Kepler architecture at GeForce Lan in Shanghai. With the arrival of crowbars to reviewers and a countdown to an announcement by Nvidia at that same LAN seems to lend credibility to this rumor, however, I wouldn't hold my breathe. We haven't had enough leaks quite yet.
Well, the first of many leaks can be seen above. This is the first picture of the yet unannounced GTX690. The GTX690 should either be a dual GK104 or possibly the GK110 chip that could feature 7 billion transistors. I would prefer it being the single, 7 billion transistor chip as dual chip cards seem to be plagued by more problems.
In the picture, you can see that the card is massive. It features a single PCB so since the fan is situated in the center, it follows that the chips, if a dual GPU card, are situated on either end of the PCB. Due to the angle of the picture, it's hard to say much more about the chip. Obviously it can be expected that it will be one beast of a card after what Kepler was able to do.
Our latest poll had almost 4,500 people who answered, What do you want more? (GTX 680 or Radeon HD 7970)
Let's just say straight out of the gate you people are just a tad bit wacky for wanting a bowl of really good ice cream over an AMD Radeon HD 7970 video card. Take that HD 7970 and exchange it for like a truck load of ice cream, no? Each to their own, hehe.
Anyways, it's certainly clear that the mighty NVIDIA GeForce GTX 680 is by far much popular than the AMD Radeon HD 7970 video card taking 51% of the votes.
Something I've covered in my various editorials, that mobile SoC (system-on-a-chip) graphics performance will pass console level performance soon, and NVIDIA agrees with me. NVIDIA predicts mobile SoC graphics performance will surpass the Xbox 360 graphical capabilities by 2014. More so, mobile GPUs are expected to equal the graphics processing power of the Xbox 360 by next year.
NVIDIA provided a slide, which in usual fashion doesn't look like it makes a hell of a lot of sense, to Anandtech, highlighting how far graphics performance has come since 2001, and where they expect it to go by 2014. The solid lines in the chart are estimated performance, while the dotted lines represent trends.
The console line starts in 2001 with the release of the NVIDIA-powered Xbox, and continues with the ATI-powered Xbox 360 released in 2005. You can see it flatline as its released, as the hardware doesn't change. Mobile GPU is shown from 2007 with the release of the first iPhone and moves through to Tegra 2 and existing Tegra 3 parts. The solid green line are presumably NVIDIA GPUs throughout the years.
A new posting by Nvidia for one of its sessions at the upcoming GTC has some very interesting pieces of information in it. Mainly the fact that they are promoting "div[ing] into the features of the compute architecture for 'Kepler' - NVIDIA's new 7-billion transistor GPU." Yeah, 7 BILLION, which is just under double the GK104 chip that powers the GTX680.
Oh please let this be reality! As long as that isn't a typo, and yields are good, then it's very possible that this could power the rumored GTX690 instead of two GK104 chips. And, with the date of the conference, it's highly likely that we could see this chip next month. What price will it debut at? I'll put a bet at $1000.
S0642 - Inside Kepler
Stephen Jones (NVIDIA) , Lars Nyland (NVIDIA)
In this talk, individuals from the GPU architecture and CUDA software groups will dive into the features of the compute architecture for "Kepler" - NVIDIA's new 7-billion transistor GPU. From the reorganized processing cores with new instructions and processing capabilities, to an improved memory system with faster atomic processing and low-overhead ECC, we will explore how the Kepler GPU achieves world leading performance and efficiency, and how it enables wholly new types of parallel problems to be solved.
Topic Areas: Parallel Programming Languages & Compilers
Day: Wednesday, 05/16
Time: 2:00 pm - 3:20 pm
Location: Hall 1
AMD drops pricing on their HD 7000 series, also offers Three for Free for HD 79xx cards - three free games!
Team Green stamped down their whoop ass foot a few weeks ago when they launched their GEFORCE GTX 680, and now AMD are returning the favor by not only dropping prices on the HD 7000 series cards, but offering three free games for any purchase of the HD 79xx cards.
The name of this promotion is called "Three for Free", because, well, that's what it is. If you purchase a HD 7950 or 7970, you'll receive Dirt Showdown (when it drops in May), Nexuiz (again, in May) as well as Deus Ex: Human Revolution (as well as the Missing Link DLC pack), which hits in May too. If this is not enough, the offer lasts up until April 30th, and you have up until May 31st to download the respective keys to the games listed above.
On top of this, there are price drops on the 7000 series, with the HD 7970 dropping from $549 to $479, the HD 7950 drops from $449 to $399. On the mid-to-low-end range, we see the HD 7770 dropping $20 to $139. You have two weeks to act on this, so if you want to grab some Team Red hardware, some free games, and a new bunch of pricing, hit it up as soon as possible!