Leaked Details Ahead of AMD Vega Launch
Joe Campbell / 2 weeks ago
AMD Vega Launch
AMD has been teasing us with details and benchmarks of the consumer level Vega for some time. Of course, this all ties up with the upcoming event at SIGGRAPH on July 30 in Los Angeles. This date is more than likely to be the date we see the official launch. The latest leak exposes more about the HBM2 Product Configurations of the cards.
What’s already known about Vega?
We recently covered an article that outlined the code names for the variants, alongside some details about the liquid cooled variants. We know that there will be 3 models known as XL, XT and XTX, The latter of the three, of course, is the water-cooled unit. The boards will range from 285W for the air-cooled Vega up to 375W for the XTX.
The latest leak highlights the inner details, more so the HBM2 Configurations of the devices. It has become clear that the Vega consumer cards are indeed limited to 8GB, not the 16GB which was anticipated. However, this doesn’t necessarily mean it’s a bad thing. AMD has spent time on this subject and the reasoning behind this may soon become clear. Of course, on paper it is better to have the higher Memory. In reality, it makes practicality an issue.
By lowering the VRAM from 16 to 8, AMD has allowed themselves breathing room when it comes to cost and power consumption. The Vega Frontier edition, we know has 16GB of VRAM in the form of 2 stacks of 8GB. However, this is a card aimed at professional grade applications and not gaming. Also, the power needed to run the Frontier is much higher and consequently, the cost is much higher too. The lower VRAM of the Vega consumer unit results in lower power consumption. In turn, this will bring down costs significantly.
The Technical Stuff
The Vega consumer cards will run with 8GB of HBM2 VRAM memory found in the form of 2x 4GB stacks. The clock rates are yet to be confirmed. However, Raja Koduri has stated that the consumer units will be clocked higher than the Vega FE. It is expected that a 1.7GHz clock is likely to be seen here. If this is correct, then Koduri’s statement will certainly ring true. Boost this to 1800MHz and the Vega will have a very respectable 12.5% higher boost clock than the Vega FE. This would put the card in the line of sight of the GTX 1080.
A Threat for Nvidia?
If the estimations and speculations turn out to be true, AMD will have a very significant competitor towards Nvidia on their line up. Our estimates would sit the Vega XL between the GTX 1060 and the 1070 with similar performance. The 64-CU Vega XT would sit between the GTX 1070 and the 1080. Of course, this leaves the water-cooled XTX to bridge gap between the GTX 1080 and the 1080 Ti. This is yet to be seen of course. However, AMD have got a lot of work to do to make these estimations correct. They certainly have the facilities and the technology to pull off a huge upset for Nvidia. It’s a big ask, but time will tell. Do you think Nvidia should be worried about the upcoming Vega consumer cards?