AMD removes memory OC limits on Radeon RX 7900 GRE, delivers up to 15% more performance

AMD removes memory speed restrictions for the Radeon RX 7900 GRE and the result is up to a 15% performance boost in pure performance.

1 minute & 48 seconds read time

AMD recently re-launched the Radeon RX 7900 GRE, a GPU that outperforms the Radeon RX 7800 XT and NVIDIA's GeForce RTX 4070 while being priced the same as the latter. However, a hard lock (which AMD has said was unintended) on memory speeds at launch limited the GPU's overclocking potential.

Radeon RX 7900 GRE performance with new memory overclocking features, benchmark image credit: TechPowerUp.

Radeon RX 7900 GRE performance with new memory overclocking features, benchmark image credit: TechPowerUp.

This meant that an overclocked Radeon RX 7800 XT could be pushed to reach Radeon RX 7900 GRE performance (while drawing more power) with no option for the RX 7900 GRE to do the same. Still, it's an impressive GPU, with a price that brings some more competition to the stacked mid-range graphics card market that now has four viable choices - the Radeon RX 7800 XT ($499), GeForce RTX 4070 ($549), Radeon RX 7900 GRE ($549), and GeForce RTX 4070 SUPER ($599).

There's some good news for those eyeing a Radeon RX 7900 GRE. The memory overclocking limits have been removed courtesy of the latest Radeon drivers, Adrenalin Edition 24.3.1.

This was confusingly listed in the release notes: "The maximum memory tuning limit may be incorrectly reported on AMD Radeon RX 7900 GRE graphics products," as highlighted in our original news post about the driver release.

Also, overclocking limits are set in the VBIOS, so you might wonder how AMD achieved this with a driver update. According to TechPowerUp, who has tested the new settings, AMD's solution includes a clock limit override that reprograms the GPU during boot-up. Very cool.

Before the update, the highest possible setting for memory overclocking was 2316 MHz. Now, it can go up to 3000 MHz - which would be 24 Gbps GDDR6, the limit of GDDR6. According to TechPowerUp's tests, the PowerColor Hellhound model shipped with memory chips rated for 20 Gbps, so it could push it up to 2604 MHz (20 Gbps).

With that, the frame rate in 3DMark Time Spy increased from 67.1 FPS using the reference specs to 77.1 FPS - an impressive 15% increase. Although this is a synthetic benchmark, it shows that the 80 RDNA 3 Compute Units of the Radeon RX 7900 GRE benefit from faster memory. Getting a +10 FPS increase is excellent from memory tweaking, making the Radeon RX 7900 GRE a definite option for OC lovers.

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Kosta is a veteran gaming journalist that cut his teeth on well-respected Aussie publications like PC PowerPlay and HYPER back when articles were printed on paper. A lifelong gamer since the 8-bit Nintendo era, it was the CD-ROM-powered 90s that cemented his love for all things games and technology. From point-and-click adventure games to RTS games with full-motion video cut-scenes and FPS titles referred to as Doom clones. Genres he still loves to this day. Kosta is also a musician, releasing dreamy electronic jams under the name Kbit.

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