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Preview of AMD Radeon Vega Frontier Edition published

by Mark Tyson on 27 June 2017, 10:01

Tags: AMD (NYSE:AMD)

Quick Link: HEXUS.net/qadizy

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AMD has designed the Radeon Vega Frontier Edition graphics card for professionals, and it will be marketed at "data scientists, immersion engineers, and product designers". However at an RRP of $1200 for an air-cooled version, it matches the price of the top-end Nvidia consumer graphics card, the Titan Xp. So wouldn't it be interesting to see these two products compared?

To recap on the specs of the AMD Radeon Vega Frontier Edition, it is the first launched Vega-GPU based graphics card. This graphics card has 64CUs, 4096 Stream Processors, 16GB of HBM2 memory on a 2,048-bit bus, and is clocked at around 1875MHz, providing 480GB/s. AMD claims that the Vega Frontier Edition is capable of 25 TFLOPS of half-precision FP16 compute performance, and 12.5 TFLOPS of single-precision FP32 compute performance. Those numbers are a little ahead of Nvidia's Titan Xp with 12 TFLOPS of FP32 compute performance.

In a PCWorld exclusive, the magazine was given two almost identical systems by AMD. The core specs were; a Ryzen 7 1800X CPU, 32GB of DDR4/2400, SSD storage, a 4K display, Windows 10 Enterprise, and even the same mouse and keyboard. One machine packed AMD's Radeon Vega Frontier Edition, while the other had graphics acceleration provided by Nvidia's GeForce Titan Xp.

In compute tests using the SPECViewPerf 12.1 and Cinebench R15 (OpenGL test), AMD's Radeon Vega Frontier Edition easily beat the Nvidia challenger. Take a look at the screenshots above and below to check those results.

AMD allowed PCWorld to provide "just a taste," of gaming benchmark fun. While it stressed the Frontier Edition was for creative pros, sometimes such workers have to play games to test them… The test systems were connected to Acer 34-inch, wide-aspect 3440x1440 panels for game testing and the games which were loaded were; Doom using Vulkan, Prey using DirectX 11, and Sniper Elite 4 using DirectX 12. Every game ran at max settings and native resolution without FreeSync enabled.

Gaming performance specs weren't shared in any detail but PCWorld said it switched back and forth between systems and was "hard pressed to tell the difference between the Titan Xp and the Radeon Vega Frontier Edition". In an additional insight it said of the Radeon - "The card appears to be faster than Nvidia's GTX 1080 and close to that of a GTX 1080 Ti card."

AMD's Radeon Vega Frontier Edition cards will ship from Monday but the consumer-focused RX Vega gaming card will only be launched late July. That time gap gives AMD more time for gaming driver optimisations.

All pictures from PCWorld.



HEXUS Forums :: 11 Comments

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“close to that of a GTX 1080 Ti card” I understand games are probably not that optimised for the new vega cards but why would you spend $1200 on this when you can buy a 1080Ti for cheaper :/

I though the main attraction to ATI was their prices….
GhostSquirrel
… why would you spend $1200 on this …

For gaming, you won't. You'll spend considerably less on the almost identical Radeon RX Vega. The Radeon Vega Frontier Edition, tested here, is a professional card, and as such attracts a higher price than a comparable consumer product.

Assuming there's a separate “professional” driver package for the Frontier edition that PCWorld were using, getting close to the Titan Xp in games is actually pretty impressive as its doing that without any driver optimisations…
GhostSquirrel
“close to that of a GTX 1080 Ti card” I understand games are probably not that optimised for the new vega cards but why would you spend $1200 on this when you can buy a 1080Ti for cheaper :/

I though the main attraction to ATI was their prices….
To add to what scaryjim said - No you don't just buy them because they are cheap they also tend to have longer life spans (a 7970 is still a decent card that has overtaken its nvidia equivalent over time due to excellent driver updates). They also tend to do better in DX12/Vulkan compared to their nvidia equivalents. It was this reason I got a RX480 over a 1060.

Also its AMD not ATI…
Nvidia's Titan range quickly departed from what seemed to be the original target market, like the Vega FE Pro they were meant to target professional content creators who wanted or needed to run games, when the Titan XP was released they all but forgot about the professional content creator and targeted well off gamers.

It makes me wonder if there's no market for professional content creators who run games so Nvidia decided to abandoned that idea.
Corky34
Nvidia's Titan range quickly departed from what seemed to be the original target market, like the Vega FE Pro they were meant to target professional content creators who wanted or needed to run games, when the Titan XP was released they all but forgot about the professional content creator and targeted well off gamers.

It makes me wonder if there's no market for professional content creators who run games so Nvidia decided to abandoned that idea.

I'm sure there is still a professional market for the card, but if you could flog a £1k+ card to a bigger market, wouldn't you?

There's no shortage of well heeled people with more money than sense and god danm it if I don't want a piece of that pie myself. :P