TweakTown NewsRefine News by Category:
We knew that NVIDIA's Pascal architecture was going to deliver a massive update over the current Maxwell-based offerings in the GeForce GTX 980 Ti and Titan X, but the transistor count is going to be insane. Titan X features 8 billion transistors while Pascal will reportedly contain an insane 17 billion transistors.
NVIDIA will be tapping TSMC's 16nm process for its Pascal architecture, as well as using HBM2, which should see a massive increase in horsepower. But even with 17 billion transistors, the Pascal-based GPU will be "significantly smaller" than the 28nm-based Maxwell GPUs, reports Fudzilla. NVIDIA will be making use of HBM2 on the next-gen video cards, offering up to 32GB of the next-gen VRAM technology on its highest end card.
Expect around 50% or more performance over the already fast GTX 980 Ti, which will see NVIDIA easily dominate AMD's Radeon R9 Fury X. But where does this leave AMD? Right now, AMD is in dire need of a huge architectural change, as Fiji didn't really bring anything new to the table. All AMD has done is used HBM1, but it's benefits weren't really shown on Fury X, apart from the card being smaller than usual. NVIDIA is really going to leapfrog AMD next year with its triple-punch in 16nm + Pascal + HBM2.
It looks like NVIDIA is all systems go to launch its Maxwell-based GeForce GTX 950 next month according to HWBattle, where we now have some specs and a better idea on price to share.
NVIDIA will be pricing its GeForce GTX 950 at under $150, $50 less than the GTX 960 which kicks off at around $199. The new video card will be based on NVIDIA's successful Maxwell architecture, with a GM206 GPU and 786 CUDA cores, 2GB of GDDR5 spread out over a 128-bit memory interface. We should expect memory bandwidth to be around 107GB/sec, while it uses a single 8-pin PCIe power connector using up to 90W of power.
NVIDIA will position this at MOBA and casual gamers, but that sub $150 pricing is going to be very enticing for many gamers.
While the Radeon R9 Fury X is already one of the smallest flagship video cards ever released, the upcoming R9 Nano is going to shrink that down to a whole new level. The R9 Fury X measures in at around 19cm, but the R9 Nano is just 15nm.
How much power does the R9 Nano have behind it? Well, according to some leaked benchmarks, the R9 Nano would feature similar performance to the massive R9 290X, but with half the power consumption. Considering the size of the card, this is quite the achievement, with most of the thanks going to High Bandwidth Memory (HBM). Another benefit over the Fury X is that the Nano features an air-cooler, and not an all-in-one liquid cooler like the Fury X.
Back to the benchmarks, where DGLee from IYD.KR reports that the Unigine Heaven benchmark running at 4K with the R9 Nano pushing out 26FPS. These numbers are from AMD themselves, showing off the bandwidth per stream processor. The R9 290X has 320GB/sec of memory bandwidth, with 2816 stream processors, leaving the R9 290X with 0.1136GB/sec. The R9 Nano with its 4096 stream processors and 512GB/sec bandwidth courtesy of HBM, delivers 0.1250GB/sec. When it comes to the power efficiency, the R9 Nano has 0.152 FPS/watt, while the R9 290X features 0.076 FPS/watt... a large increase in the R9 Nano's favor.
The release of the R9 Nano happens next month, where you can be sure we'll be running it through its paces here at TweakTown.
With our exclusive report that AMD would be making just 30,000 units of its HBM-powered Radeon R9 Fury X, the news that it is receiving help from United Microelectronics Corporation (UMC) in the form of the company entering volume production of TSVs (Through Silicon Vias) which is used in the production of HBM (High Bandwidth Memory).
AMD has already acknowledged the supply issues of the R9 Fury X, but with the release of the air-cooled Fury and the imminent release of the R9 Nano, these HBM supply issues are only going to get worse. UMC had kept AMD at bay until July 20, where it entered volume production of TSVs, which means the bottleneck that AMD is experiencing, should be gone.
UMC said: "AMD has a successful history of delivering cutting-edge GPU products to market. This volume production milestone is the culmination of UMC's close TSV collaboration with AMD, and we are happy to bring the performance benefits of this technology to help power their new generation of GPU products. We look forward to continuing this fruitful partnership with AMD for years to come".
It was only earlier last month that NVIDIA had reportedly taped out the GP100 process on TSMC's 16nm process, but now we're hearing that we should expect two GPUs from this, both featuring HBM2.
The first GPU will use 8-Hi stacks, while the other will have 4-Hi stacks, both featuring the Pascal architecture, 16nm process, a 4096-bit memory bus and HBM2. The 4-Hi variation of the GPU will be clocked at 1GHz, which will end up as a consumer-orientated GeForce GPU of some sort (the GeForce GTX 1080 if NVIDIA continues along its naming path) while the second variation has four HBM2 stacks at 1GHz, each with 8-Hi.
For those not in the know, the x-Hi (x representing 4 or 8) denotes the number of stacked DRAM dies, so we'll see the GP100 GPU with 8-Hi HBM2 stacks aimed at the professional market (think Quadro, Tesla), while the 4-Hi HBM2 will be the next-gen consumer GeForce card, expected in 2016.
One of the most exciting GM200-based video cards is nearly here, with EVGA all systems go to release their GeForce GTX 980 Ti KINGPIN video card tomorrow, priced at $850.
EVGA is offering its new card with pre-binned GPUs, which allow consumers to choose their GPU ASIC quality before the purchase is made. Inside, we have the same GM200 GPU that powers the reference GeForce GTX 980 Ti, with the 2816 CUDA cores, 176 TMUs and 96 ROPS. But the Base Clock has been increased from 1000MHz on the reference design, to 1203MHz. This results in the Boost Clock being increased from 1075MHz to 1304MHz. With these clocks, it's certainly not the fastest GTX 980 Ti out there, an award that goes to the ZOTAC GeForce GTX 980 Ti AMP! Extreme Edition.
Powering the EVGA GeForce GTX 980 Ti KINGPIN card are two 8-pin PCIe power connectors joined by a 6-pin PCIe power connector. This will provide the board with up to 450W of power, which is simply insane. EVGA has deployed an extended PCB on the card with a beautiful custom design sporting extra copper filling for smoother power delivery. 12 layers have been stacked together to form the PCB, with 14+3 phase fully digital VRM will provide the card with all of the power it needs to keep it stable during those overclocking sessions.
Where the GPU ASIC quality comes into play, is that consumers can opt for four different models. The first, is the $850 model with 72%+ ASIC quality, $900 for 74%+ ASIC quality, $1000 for 76%+ ASIC quality, or a huge $1050 for 80%+ ASIC quality. These cards aren't for the faint-hearted, but for the true enthusiasts.
Under LN2, KINGPIN himself has clocked the EVGA GeForce GTX 980 Ti KINGPIN card to a huge 2100MHz on the Core, while the RAM has been increased to 2053MHz (up from 1750MHz), providing 400GB/sec memory bandwidth.
Before we exclusively revealed AMD was opting with the Radeon R9 Fury X name for its next-gen, HBM-based video card, we reported on the purported Radeon R9 490X that would arrive in 2016. We knew it would be based on the 16nm process, and use HBM2, but it looks like we were wrong with the name.
During AMD's recent earnings call, President and CEO Lisa Su talked about the company playing around with a couple of its first FinFET designs. Su said that FinFET is going to be very important for the company as we move into the new year. But, she also reiterated that a good design and architecture is just as, if not more important than the manufacturing process - something we definitely agree on.
AMD will be releasing its 'Arctic Islands' architecture next year, its next-generation GPU architecture based on the 16nm manufacturing process, and using the next-gen HBM2. HBM2 will deliver 8GB of HBM2 on a video card, with memory bandwidth of 1024GB/sec - up from the 512GB/sec found on the Radeon R9 Fury X. But what we need to know is: what will AMD call this card? Surely it can't be the Fury X 2, as I'm sure the dual-GPU card coming out later this year will take up the Fury X2 (no space) name. Could AMD release it as the Fury XX? Because I can't wait to see the third iteration: Fury XXX.
On the CPU side of things, we should see FinFET-based Zen CPUs next year, something that will combat the Kaby Lake architecture from Intel that is arriving 2016. AMD's new Zen CPUs will be based on the even-smaller 14nm process, which makes for some incredibly exciting times over at AMD.
AMD will be launching one of its most exciting video cards ever next month, with the High Bandwidth Memory-powered Radeon R9 Nano to launch mid-August, according to company CEO Lisa Su.
Su announced the release window during AMD's Q2 2015 earnings call, where she said: "Fury just launched, actually this week, and we will be launching Nano in the August timeframe". We don't know exactly what to expect, but we do know it's going to be a super-small video card with a TDP of just 175W.
Inside the Radeon R9 Nano, we know that HBM will be used, and that it will have 2x the performance-per-watt compared to the R9 290X, as well as 2x the performance density of the 290X. This will see AMD be the Mini-ITX champion, so if you've got a super-small PC that you need to buy a video card for, the R9 Nano should be the one.
PowerColor (TUL Corporation) has added to its R9 lineup with this 4GB Fury HBM model, said to deliver 60% more memory bandwidth over GDDR5 thanks to this technology advancement.
Tailored towards 4K and VR applications, the PowerColor R9 Fury offers cooling through three 90mm fans, six 8mm heat pipes and a black NI plating clip.
Complete with support for AMD LiquidVR, DirectX 12, Vulkan APIs, AMD CrossFire and FreeSync technology, this card offers a 4096bit memory interface, three DisplayPort outputs and a single HDMI option too. With the clock sitting at 1000MHz, this card looks quite sleek.
One of the main benefits of AMD's Radeon R9 Fury and R9 Fury X cards is their use of High Bandwidth Memory (HBM), and thanks to AMD's relationship with SK Hynix, AMD has 'priority access' to HBM2, according to WCCFTech.
HBM2 is going to be limited in supply at first, the same problems associated with HBM1 right now, and with NVIDIA set to use HBM2 on their upcoming 16nm-based Pascal architecture, AMD will have the one-up on its competitor. AMD should be able to secure most of the HBM2 produced at the time, which is exactly the position AMD wants to be in, come 2016.
If this is true, it is going to force NVIDIA into a corner. NVIDIA needs to jump to HBM2 with its shift to 16nm, and its first GPU based on the Pascal architecture. But, if NVIDIA finds it hard to secure HBM2 because AMD has 'priority access' to the first batches of the super-fast VRAM, this could cause a big issue for NVIDIA's next-gen cards. HBM2 is expected to drive memory bandwidth to 1TB/sec, up from the 512GB/sec possible on the Fury X, and 334GB/sec on the GTX 980 Ti.