AMD plans new round of Radeon price cuts, Sleeping Dogs bundle

By on August 21, 2012, 11:00 AM

As expected, it didn’t take long for AMD’s response to Nvidia’s new GeForce GTX 660 Ti to arrive. According to Anandtech, the company will be enacting a new round of price cuts later this week, which will be affecting the 7900 and 7800 series. In particular, the 7950 should start showing up as low as $319, down from around $349, while the 7870 Ghz edition and 7850 will now cost $249 and $209, respectively.

The 2GB Radeon HD 7870 had been selling for around $280 - $300 after a price cut last month, but with the more powerful GTX 660 Ti arriving at $300 AMD decided to bring the price down a further $30 - $50 to stay competitive. The 2GB Radeon HD 7850 saw a similar drop of around $30 from the current $239 - $259. Meanwhile, the 1GB version of the card is now priced at $189, although they are extremely hard to find.

This is the latest in a string of price cuts AMD has announced in response to Nvidia launches.

GPU Launch price Spring MSRP Summer MSRP 2nd Summer MSRP
Radeon HD 7970GE $499 -- -- $499
Radeon HD 7970 $549 $479 $429 $429
Radeon HD 7950 $449 $399 $349 $319
Radeon HD 7870 $349 $349 $299 $249
Radeon HD 7850 $249 $249 ~$239 $209
Radeon HD 7770 $159 $139 ~$119 ~$119
Radeon HD 7750 $109 $109 ~$99 ~$99

It’s worth noting that since AMD can’t control final card pricing beyond what they charge partners for parts, unofficially some of these prices, or even lower ones, were already available at retailers like Newegg. Likewise, some models with custom cooling and tweaked settings might sell a bit higher.

In addition to the price cuts AMD will be announcing a new game bundle featuring the recently released Sleeping Dogs. The new promotion will replacing the outgoing DiRT Showdown bundle, which offered buyers of Radeon HD 7900 cards a free copy of the game at participating retailers.




User Comments: 31

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TomSEA TomSEA, TechSpot Chancellor, said:

They'd better come down more than that. The 660 Ti was meant to compete directly with the 7950 and beats it in nearly every comparison (in fact, it even competes favorably with the 7970 in some games), yet is $10-$20 cheaper than the 7950. Not to mention nVidia has a promotion right now where if you buy one of the Ti's you get Borderlands 2 with it.

AMD needs to come down another $30-$40 if they really want to compete. It's all about getting the best bang for the buck.

MilwaukeeMike said:

I thought the 7950B was the response to the 660 TI. [link]

howzz1854 said:

I wonder what the score will look like when overclocking both 660ti and 7950. I have the 7950 and that thing just shoots through the roof in overclocking, from stock 800mhz to 1200mhz (50% overcock). I am wondering if 660Ti 's overclockability is as good as the 7950. anyone with a 660ti care to chime in?

TomSEA TomSEA, TechSpot Chancellor, said:

If so, the 7950B is going to be even more expensive than the 7950. And looking at that AnandTech article, the benchmark increases from the standard to the B model aren't that significant. A 4 frame average increase over all the games tested.

Looking at Techspot's review of the Gigabyte 660 Ti, except for a couple of games (Aliens vs. Predator & Metro 2033), the 660 Ti beats the 7950 in all other games, and many by a significant amount - 20 fps or more. So that 4 extra frames per second that the B model generates still isn't going to cut it if you're looking at that value alone.

We'll have to see pricing and side-by-side comparisons, but I'm thinking AMD is still going to have to do some price drops to compete - especially with the Borderlands 2 tossed in as bait with the 660 Ti purchase.

For howzz1854, here's the TechSpot report on the Ti OC:

[link]

howzz1854 said:

If so, the 7950B is going to be even more expensive than the 7950. And looking at that AnandTech article, the benchmark increases from the standard to the B model aren't that significant. A 4 frame average increase over all the games tested.

Looking at Techspot's review of the Gigabyte 660 Ti, except for a couple of games (Aliens vs. Predator & Metro 2033), the 660 Ti beats the 7950 in all other games, and many by a significant amount - 20 fps or more. So that 4 extra frames per second that the B model generates still isn't going to cut it if you're looking at that value alone.

We'll have to see pricing and side-by-side comparisons, but I'm thinking AMD is still going to have to do some price drops to compete - especially with the Borderlands 2 tossed in as bait with the 660 Ti purchase.

For howzz1854, here's the TechSpot report on the Ti OC:

[link]

I wonder if it's possible for TS to include BF3 in the overclock comparison. I know my 7950 at 1200mhz is equivalent or faster than even 7970 Gigaherz edition, which puts it way beyond an overclocked 660ti on TS's benchmark test in Crysis 2. and I know I am not one of the only few out there with 7950 clocked up to 1200mhz, I've seen many beyond that mark.

hummm

TomSEA TomSEA, TechSpot Chancellor, said:

Just curious howzz - what's the temp on your GPU with it OC'd to 1200mhz? That's a damn serious OC - thinking you're running liquid nitrogen or something as a cooler...LOL.

darkzelda said:

In techSpot's review for the GTX 660 ti they use Catalyst 12.6 that doesn't have the performance boost for 7000 series. In every review I've read the HD 7950 beats the GTX 660 Ti, not to mention that this card overclocks way better! A HD 7950 is simp'ly a better buy than a GTX 660 Ti specially for future games!

TomSEA TomSEA, TechSpot Chancellor, said:

Well darkzelda, I hate to disappoint you, but here are a few reviews that don't jive with what you said:

Maximum PC - 660Ti cards beat the 7950 in 7 out of 11 comparisons

[link]

TweakTown - Ti wins in 13 out of 18 categories (including heat, noise and power consumption)

[link]

BitTech - Ti wins in 6 out or 8 categories (and this one includes 7950B)

[link]

Guru3D - Ti wins in 14 of 18 categories

[link]

And in TechSpot's review here, with the exception of Metro 2033 and Aliens vs. Predator the 660 ti shows better results in every other category. Right now the 660 Ti is simply the better card with the better pricing, there's no denying it.

ikesmasher said:

the 7850 will hopefully be on sale often for less then 200 then. Then ill pick one up.

dividebyzero dividebyzero, trainee n00b, said:

I thought the 7950B was the response to the 660 TI

It was, but that originated from AMD's PR not Sales.

The BIOS flash boost feature* was introduced primarily to get reviewers to test the GTX 660Ti against an overclocked 7950 without having to fight an impossible deadline of getting a revised 7950 w/boost onto store shelves, while the price cuts are an attempt to retake marketshare back from Nvidia's GTX600 series- which is a double edged sword kind of deal since constant price cutting isn't usually commensurate with a premiere brand ( a public perception problem in marketing), and secondly, it knifes the resell market esp. for those who bought cards at the initial MSRP's...which means that Nvidia cards tend to hold their value in the resell market since Nvidia cards generally don't fall far from the initial launch price. On the other hand, cheaper cards** mean a better deal for consumers- albeit at the expense of AMD's financial earnings.

* A complete waste of time for the "consumer" since anyone proficient enough to BIOS flash a VGA, is likely competant enough to manually overclock their card using much less voltage than the "fail safe" 1.12v applied in the BIOS flash.

** Anyone with a keen eye would notice that these prices have already been in effect for a few weeks in many markets- especially if you factor in mail-in rebates.

howzz1854 said:

Just curious howzz - what's the temp on your GPU with it OC'd to 1200mhz? That's a damn serious OC - thinking you're running liquid nitrogen or something as a cooler...LOL.

I recently upgraded the heatsink fan to an aftermarket acelerro Extreme 7970. before with the stock none reference cooler it was hovering 85~90c at 1200mhz in a 70F ambient temp, and VRM was insane at 95~100c. now with the acelerro extreme in 85F ambient temperature it stays at 60c, and VRM at less than 70c. I believe I have maxed out the power draw for the two PCIe plugs, because at 1200mhz I feed it 1.225volt, and everything is peachy, furmark, heaven, Crysis2 benchmark all stable. but if I push it pass 1.23volt... it card actually will shut down in power intensive games like Metro. so I believe I've maxed out the power draw. it's too bad, because I would love to see how much higher this Tahiti can go if I had more power.

TomSEA TomSEA, TechSpot Chancellor, said:

That's some really nice overclocking. And very manageable temps with the aftermarket cooler. Have you clocked it on the original Crysis to see what kind of frame rate you can get?

howzz1854 said:

That's some really nice overclocking. And very manageable temps with the aftermarket cooler. Have you clocked it on the original Crysis to see what kind of frame rate you can get?

I know I did that a while back and the performance improvement was quite a bit, can't remember since I don't really play C2 anymore. I play BF3 more often and comparing stock 800mhz to 1200mhz the difference average FPS goes from roughly 35fps to 48~50fps in relatively intense scenes, Ultra mode 2560X1440. which is why I am really interested in seeing the overclocking score between the two. because in my case that's an impressive 37% of frame rate improvement, wonder how much in % frame rate improvement the 660 will get.

howzz1854 said:

I should point out that the memory overclock also plays a huge role tho. I couldn't achieve the performance mentioned above with GPU core frequency alone. the memory was bumped from stock 1250 to 1600. and the performance improvement started to take off once beyond 1400mhz.

ikesmasher said:

the 7950 isnt quite there yet, but newegg already has a 7850 or 2 for less then $200.

howzz1854 said:

I should point out that the memory overclock also plays a huge role tho. I couldn't achieve the performance mentioned above with GPU core frequency alone. the memory was bumped from stock 1250 to 1600. and the performance improvement started to take off once beyond 1400mhz.

correction... I just got home and fired up the game and did a quick FRAP on Gulf of Oman map. stock 800mhz is 40fps @ultra 2560~1440, with a quick hotkey (thanks to Afterburner) at 1200mhz is 56fps, so that's 40% increase.

TomSEA TomSEA, TechSpot Chancellor, said:

Again, very excellent OC howzz. So one last question - what's the native resolution on your monitor?

howzz1854 said:

2560X1440. it's actually a 27inch apple LED display. one of the reason I bought the 7950 is due to the native mini display port support. so yes... all testing above were done in 2560X1440 res.

Staff
Steve Steve said:

In techSpot's review for the GTX 660 ti they use Catalyst 12.6 that doesn't have the performance boost for 7000 series. In every review I've read the HD 7950 beats the GTX 660 Ti, not to mention that this card overclocks way better! A HD 7950 is simp'ly a better buy than a GTX 660 Ti specially for future games!

Incorrect we used the 12.7 drivers.

Blue Falcon said:

TomSEA, no need to cherry-pick anything. 3D Center has compiled 12, yes 12 professional reviews, and overall GTX660Ti is only on par with an 800mhz HD7950.

[link]

Since a lot of us are enthusiasts who are rocking 2500k or i7 CPUs and we don't mind overclocking, we also acknowledge that those $320-330 after-market HD7950s can easily hit 1100-1200mhz on stock Tahiti XT voltage of 1.175V.

The 7950 "B" reference cards are crappy binned 7950 chips. Who cares about using them. They need 1.25V to reach 925mhz. That has 0 reflection on the $320-330 MSI TwinFrozr III, Gigabyte Windforce 3x or other after-market 7950 cards.

It's well known all over forums that MSI specifically puts only 80%+ ASIC level 7950 into their MSI TwinFrozr 3 7950 and each one of those reaches 1100-1150mhz on 1.175V, guaranteed. I haven't seen a single MSI TF3 7950 with 6+8 pin power connectors built on 7970 PC not hit those clocks.

The beauty of the 7950 is that is already performs faster at only 880mhz after-market 660Tis:

[link]

At 1025mhz, 7950 is a hair behind GTX680 in BF3:

[link]

Since HD7950 is a barely cut-down Tahiti XT chip (still retains 32 ROP / 384-bit memory bus), GTX660Ti is a 25% cut-down GK104 on the ROP / memory bus side, and we know that HD7970 GE is the fastest single-GPU out, it only stands to reason that HD7950 @ 1100-1150mhz will smash an overclocked GTX660Ti.

In fact, Guru 3D tested all 3 in Crysis 3 at 1080P

MSI Power Edition GTX660Ti @ 1313mhz = 60 fps

http://www.guru3d.com/imageview.php?image=41818

MSI Power Edition GTX670 @ 1300mhz = 69 fps

http://www.guru3d.com/imageview.php?image=40713

MSI TwinFrozr III 7950 @ 1167mhz = 72 fps

http://www.guru3d.com/imageview.php?image=36585

Enthusiasts who overclock know that HD7950 > HD7970/GTX680, something the 660Ti has no shot of doing unless you are using FXAA in Max Payne 3.

660Ti is slow, the minute you want to use real AA or say use Mods for Skyrim:

[link]

8xMSAA in Batman, gets rocked by a stock 7950:

[link]

GTX660Ti ONLY looks good at stock speeds. It gets thrashed by an overclocked 7950 and even 1300mhz GPU overclocking can't allow 660Ti to catch up, not even close.

On the low end HD7850 is already dropping to $190 on Newegg. NV has nothing at all to compete against it. HD7870 for $250 is also a better bang for the buck than the $300 GTX660Ti since sometimes the 660Ti even loses to the 7870:

[link]

It is NV who needs to drop prices not AMD.

Last quarter AMD gained 2.5% in the desktop discrete GPU space, while NV's desktop discrete GPU shipments fell 10%.

[link]

Single-GPU performance crown and better price/performance in nearly every price bracket from $80-450 is what AMD is delivering now. The only card worth buying on the NV side is the GTX670.

GTX670 needs to drop to $275 to even make any sense.

Blue Falcon said:

I meant GTX660Ti needs to drop to $275 to make sense * not 670 obviously.

dividebyzero dividebyzero, trainee n00b, said:

GTX660Ti ONLY looks good at stock speeds

I wouldn't say that

On the low end HD7850 is already dropping to $190 on Newegg. NV has nothing at all to compete against it

Considering Nvidia have held back on releasing the GTX 660 (non-Ti) because of excess inventory of GTX 560's which have started lurking in the $180 bracket (eVGA and Zotac for instance indicating that EOL isn't far off now), it doesn't seem like bad business practice...especially when you consider that AMD fielded a top-to-bottom 28nm lineup against Nvidia's aging Fermi cards yet only managed a 2.5% increase in marketshare in desktop. When AMD increase by 2.5% but Nvidia drop by 10.4% in what is essentially a flat market, that would imply that Intel took up the remaining percentage from Nvidia...and what discrete graphics are going to fall to Intel's iGPU ? Probably safe to say the low end - unless anyone thinks it likely that Sandy/Ivy Bridge graphics are ready for mainstream/enthusiast gaming. No, I don't think so either.

When you take into account Nvidia's higher average selling prices and cheaper BoM on many cards, it isn't difficult to work out why one company makes $60m a quarter profit while the other...doesn't

It is NV who needs to drop prices not AMD

So AMD just dropped prices (again) because they don't really want to make money?

Company's cut prices because they fear losing market share. If they're doing it to be the peoples champion maybe they shouldn't have priced the 7970 at $549 at launch

and overall GTX660Ti is only on par with an 800mhz HD7950

Which at this point in time isn't that bad considering the 7950 costs $20-30 more. I'd also be wary of reading too much into some of the review numbers- OCaholic recycled benchmarks on old drivers to the detriment of AMD cards in general (since 12.7 offers a reasonable perf. increase), likewise a lot of sites are using DiRT:Showdown - a game tailored for and by AMD for GCN and pretty much borked on Nvidia cards...I'm pretty sure if WoW:Cataclysm was as widely used you'd also see some skewed results in the other direction - I'm assuming that Showdown doesn't have forty times the number of players that WoW has... I'd also be less inclined to factor in games that are producing framerates that are unplayable -I wouldn't consider ~20 fps for Metro 2033 @ 4xMSAA "real world gameplay", and no amount of driver optimization is ever going to change that- so how valid is the setting?

PC EliTiST PC EliTiST said:

Mark my words... People will start getting 660TIs in hope to play BF3 on Ultra... This card will be only able to do 'High Settings' without any MSAA anti-aliasing. Keep it in mind in case you play BF3 a lot.

howzz1854 said:

I am already playing BF3 in ultra at 2560X1440 resolution with my 7950 overclocked averaging 50+ fps. I don't think 660ti is going to make any difference. I think people getting either 7950 or 660ti will be getting a good deal. but the question is.. what will the score board look like for both in overclocked settings. lets face it... anyone care to read these forums and talk about different cards most likely will be bumping up the frequency and be doing a bit of overclocking. so stock comparison is a only a good reference. the review link put out by guru3d is very interesting.

CMH, TechSpot Chancellor, said:

Correct me if I'm wrong, but at 2560x1440 (or 2560x1600 in a 30" the bandwidth-starved 660ti loses some of its competitive edge against the 7950.

Most reviews are done at 1920 x 1200 or 1080p, and I'd admit the numbers are in favor for the 660ti.

I'm surprised noone had brought this up yet.

dividebyzero dividebyzero, trainee n00b, said:

Correct me if I'm wrong, but at 2560x1440 (or 2560x1600 in a 30" the bandwidth-starved 660ti loses some of its competitive edge against the 7950.

Up until the fairly recent phenomenon of $300 2560x1440, I doubt many people spending a sizeable amount of cash on a 2560x1440/1600 IPS screen would be going to be shopping for singular third-tier card. If the resolution becomes more widely used it could have some impact on the mainstream...although by the time that happens, we'll likely be on the third generation of 28nm GPU's at least.

Most reviews are done at 1920 x 1200 or 1080p, and I'd admit the numbers are in favor for the 660ti.

If you're looking for reviews indicative of real world gaming then 1920x1080 might fit the bill for most people which is why it's the commonly used resolution - although a quick look at some reviews of the 660Ti and their testing resolutions...

1920 and below only (8 sites): Bjorn3D...Benchmark Rev...HiTech Legion..Cowcotland...LanOC...PureOC...OC3D...OCaholic...

Includes 2560 (21 sites): Ninjalane...Guru3D...HT4U...Xbit...Hexus...Hardwareluxx...Le
it Reviews
...Hardware Secrets...Hot Hardware...TechSpot...Technic 3D...Hardware Canucks...Vortez...VR-Zone...Tech Report...Motherboards.org...Anandtech...Tweaktown...HardOCP.
.ComputerBase...Tom's Hardware

Includes 5760 (10 sites): Neoseeker...RWL...Hardware Heaven...PurePC...eTeknix...Hardware.info...OCC...TPU...Bit-
ech
...PC Perspective...

...would indicate you probably need to update your bookmarks- especially as a large number of sites that put out multiple reviews tend to fall into the 2560 and 5760 categories

I'm surprised noone had brought this up yet.

I did. But then, the GTX 660 Ti review thread seemed the appropriate place for it rather than a story about AMD price cuts

Blue Falcon said:

dividedbyzero,

I totally agree with you regarding NV making $. From a business point of view, NV is a better run company (balance sheet, cash flow, strategy -- Tegra, Tesla, Quadro lines). However, strictly speaking on price performance, I think AMD has the edge now.

I see HD7870 has dipped to $230-240 on Newegg:

[link]

[link]

Also, cards such as the MSI TF3 / Gigabyte 7950 are dropping to $310:

[link]

[link]

Here is the question:

- If I am not overclocking, why would I pay $60-70 extra for the 660Ti?

- If I am overclocking, why wouldn't I buy a 7950 and crank it to 1100-1150, and while at it not even worry about that 1.5GB of VRAM (3rd 512mb controller may hurt 660Ti's bandwidth per AnandTech and other sites)?

Obviously AMD was riding with high prices since NV instead decided to focus on mobile market (per your JDPeddie link NV gained mobile discrete GPU market share). Now though, AMD responded and from a consumer's (not shareholder's) point of view they are once again delivering better price/performance and more oomph for overclockers.

Perhaps what makes GTX660Ti sweet are those NV features, PhysX, CUDA, Adaptive Vsync, TXAA but overclocking wise 7950 should win. BTW, that HardOCP article you linked used an 800mhz 7950 against a 1300mhz+ GTX660Ti. Let's see what happens when he has a follow-up article.

Blue Falcon said:

dividedbyzero,

Also, Dirt Showdown is not a mysterious outlier. It's an AMD Gaming Evolved title. AMD is just working closer with developers on pushing global lighting model and contract hardening shadows via DirectCompute shaders. Thus far 3 games on the market have been coded to take advantage of DirectCompute and some other GCN architectural enhancements and they will all perform faster on AMD cards.

Dirt Showdown

Sniper Elite V2

Sleeping Dogs

If AMD puts even more $ behind DirectCompute for games, Kepler will continue to suffer in all future titles which use DirectCompute for HDAO/global lighting, etc.

cliffordcooley cliffordcooley, TechSpot Paladin, said:

If AMD puts even more $ behind DirectCompute for games, Kepler will continue to suffer in all future titles which use DirectCompute for HDAO/global lighting, etc.
Thats only fair since AMD cards suffer from lack of Cuda support.

dividebyzero dividebyzero, trainee n00b, said:

Also, Dirt Showdown is not a mysterious outlier. It's an AMD Gaming Evolved title. AMD is just working closer with developers on pushing global lighting model and contract hardening shadows via DirectCompute shaders.

Yup. And that's what they should have been pushing since GPGPU became a factor in consumer graphics. Nvidia 2006...AMD 2012. Better late than never.

If AMD puts even more $ behind DirectCompute for games

Yup. IF. A big proviso when it comes to AMD. Some of us remember ATi's GiTG program which also promised much...and promptly faded into obscurity. Hopefully AMD learn this time around...although it does bring up a couple of points:

1. AMD is haemorrhaging red ink. It will be interesting to see what kind of triage system they use for project funding, and

2. AMD's chief game dev point man recently departed for Intel, so your future world of AMD domination may not be so cut-and-dried

BTW: All that's going to happen is that AMD release AMD-centric titles, and Nvidia does likewise. Borderlands 2 is due for release soon is it not...with TXAA support for Nvidia cards - 4 x MSAA performance for FXAA/MLAA performance penalty...and as far as I'm aware, AMD cards still tank in extreme tessellation- you don't think that maybe Nvidia might exploit that weakness?

(or the OCaholic review you linked to earlier)

All this ends up meaning is that eventually your choice of IHV might be predicated upon the game sponsor and game engine- that being the case, then us as the consumers lose. I'd also bear in mind that:

1. the image quality additions have to bring more to the game than the penalty for using them, and

2. The I.q. additions need to be something that can be used by cards down through the product stack if they do add substantially to gameplay

Kepler will continue to suffer in all future titles which use DirectCompute for HDAO/global lighting, etc.

I doubt it. For some obscure reason, people are thinking that Nvidia has abandoned compute because of the GK104, when the strategy was obviously to learn from the big-die mistake of Fermi (I.e. unnecessary double precision, 72-bit ECC memory support, large cache - none of which is required for gaming). AMD/ATi's success stemmed from getting the maximum number of usable GPU's per wafer. Nvidia is doing nothing more than branching it's product line. If you think that a GK110 card won't leave a Tahiti/Sea Islands in the shade in both compute and gaming I think you'll be sorely disappointed in Q1 2013 ( All production from September into the new year will be Tesla's for HSC projects such as ORNL).Nvidia have been doing consumer compute since 2006 (G80)- I doubt that they have suddenly decided that they don't want 85% of the professional graphics market.

CMH, TechSpot Chancellor, said:

I did. But then, the GTX 660 Ti review thread seemed the appropriate place for it rather than a story about AMD price cuts

I got a bit sidetracked when howzz started talking performance :P

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