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AMD is working on 'high-performing' GPUs, but it may be a while

By Polycount · 34 replies
Oct 29, 2018
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  1. AMD may be killing it in the high-end and mid-range CPU market, but it's no secret that the PC hardware maker has fallen behind when it comes to GPUs. If you ask most tech outlets or independent reviewers, AMD's Vega-series GPUs were decidedly weak compared to Nvidia's 10-series alternatives.

    Worse yet, the company hasn't given us any hints that it's working on anything to challenge Nvidia's recent RTX-series GPUs.

    However, that may have changed now. According to an interview between Barron's and AMD CEO Lisa Su, the company still intends to compete in the high-end video card market. "We’re making high-performing quality products and building a solid long-term foundation," Su reportedly said.

    Su's words will probably comfort long-term AMD fans slightly, but there's still reason to be skeptical here.

    To begin with, we don't know what "high-performing quality products" means to AMD. It undoubtedly refers to GPUs, but what form those GPUs will take, and which of Nvidia's products they will compete with remains to be seen. Most importantly, we don't know when these mystery cards will release. Su's wording seems to suggest AMD's high-end GPU plans are more of a long-term goal than a short-term one.

    Will AMD try to take on Nvidia's real-time raytracing tech (which, as of writing, has few practical applications), or will the card maker focus on pure performance? Will AMD follow Nvidia's lead with card pricing, charging around $1,000 for its flagship product?

    We don't have answers to these questions for now, but with a little luck, that will change in the coming months.

    Permalink to story.

    Last edited by a moderator: Oct 29, 2018
  2. Dimitrios

    Dimitrios TS Guru Posts: 385   +261

    I have followed AMD my whole life and INTEL. Lisa Su may be the best CEO ever. She literally saved a company that was going bankrupt. So far anything she says she has delivered and I trust her on this subject. I wish I keep my AMD stock :-(
  3. Lew Zealand

    Lew Zealand TS Guru Posts: 511   +389

    "If I'm not back in 5 minutes,

    just wait longer!"
    ForgottenLegion likes this.
  4. Dextruction5

    Dextruction5 TS Member

    I hope that AMD release something worthwhile, as Nvidia has just gone wild with GPU prices, to the point where a used card is a way better option than a new one for most people due to the prices. Just wish AMD curbed their power usage as well, as while it may not matter to most people, you don't expactly want your pc to be chewing through a 1000w, when it could easily be using 200-300w less
  5. TheGiantRat

    TheGiantRat TS Rookie

    AMD has a budget of less than half of Nvidia and less than 10 times of Intel, and it has to spread that budget to both CPU and GPU departments. How the heck can they pull that off? I really don't understand some people. They just expect a company to make an excellent product without considering the situation. Stop acting like a spoiled kid and demand whatever to be delivered.
    You need to buy their products to fund their development, but no, you buy products from their competitors and demand them to make better products while the survival of their company was hanging on a thread just 2 years ago?
    You want to run faster, you have to eat and train. Just because you run slower, your coach gives you less food and want you to double your training. How the **** can you do that? You need to eat well in order to have more energy to train. How the **** can do a 5000 cal training load with 2500 cal worth of food?
    Tell me. How?
    It is not AMD charging a ridiculous amount of money for their products. They charge based on performance vs the competition, but still all of you insist on buying Nvidia and refuse to support the underdog to help funding their R&D.
    When you don't contribute anything, shut the hole up because you don't have the right to demand improvements.
    The high prices on Nvidia cards are because of the brain dead buyers who buy based on brand without a single bit of knowledge about how the market work. Only demand but not contribute anything to help maintaining the balance of the market.
    So stop complaining about the ridiculous price hike of nvidia cards. It is because buyers are too stupid.
    If you stop buying Nvidia for 1 generation, you don't have to buy AMD. Just stop buying Nvidia for 1 generation, that is all you have to do to slap the **** out of Nvidia's face for treating its customers like a bunch of stupid sheep.
    Buying Nvidia cards feels like they slap **** on my face and I keep on insisting on getting one. No thank you.
  6. godrilla

    godrilla TS Enthusiast Posts: 70   +37

    And we will all look back on these days and say thank goodness for competition again.
  7. Ryzen Core

    Ryzen Core TS Rookie

    Enough Said , well said.
    Charles Olson and ShObiT like this.
  8. hahahanoobs

    hahahanoobs TS Evangelist Posts: 2,437   +862

    "We need AMD around to keep Intel and NVIDIA prices low..."

    $1500 R9 Pro Duo
    $900 FX 9590
    $549 R9 Nano
    Vega 64 and Vega 64 Liquid

  9. ForgottenLegion

    ForgottenLegion TS Guru Posts: 365   +366

    Look at the EQUIVALENT Intel/NVidia product prices and your head might shake to the point of falling off.
    Charles Olson, ShObiT and Reehahs like this.
  10. hahahanoobs

    hahahanoobs TS Evangelist Posts: 2,437   +862

    Nope. Prices were perfectly fine for blue and green team then.....
  11. Sausagemeat

    Sausagemeat TS Maniac Posts: 409   +202

    People should buy what’s best for them. It’s stupid to buy a lesser product because the company who made it is the “underdog”. The product should benefit the consumer and not the company and the company who can’t benefit the consumer the most should suffer the most. We are talking about money grabbing multi billion dollar money grabbing corporations here and that includes AMD. These aren’t football teams.

    Nvidias success is based on their ability to produce and sell cards that consumers want more. Not because of “brain dead” buyers. If anyone is brain dead it’s people who pay for a card because they want to “save” the multi billion dollar corporation from going bankrupt instead of buying what card is best for them. And let’s face it Nvidia have been far more consistent for the last decade or so than AMD have been. People should only buy AMD when it offers users better products for the same money. Right now they don’t, Nvidias 10 series is hitting crazy low prices and they use less power and run cooler than their AMD competition. A 1080 can be got for the same price as a Vega 64 or cheaper. Ergo you buy a 1080 as it is objectively better once you take heat, power and noise into the equation. If AMD want your money they should either price cut or make better cards. They definitely have been competitive to the point of being the better option in the past (HD7970, 290X, 390X are the last really decent cards of theirs that come to mind) but right now AMD deserve to lose GPU market share.
    Dextruction5, BSim500 and amghwk like this.
  12. DaveBG

    DaveBG TS Maniac Posts: 403   +152

    Its really sad that they are literally dropping from the race. Now NVIDIA will rape us... again.
  13. Evernessince

    Evernessince TS Evangelist Posts: 3,797   +3,183

    ATI has better cards in the past and Nvidia still sold more. Nvidia didn't succeed because it always had a better product, it succeed because it got suckers to not only buy the good cards but the bad ones as well. Sure Nvidia's been more consistent. That's much easier to do when you aren't treading bankruptcy.

    IMO the 2080 Ti isn't a well designed card. Having to dedicate a good chunk of the die just to Ray Tracing and another chunk to AI is a terrible idea and you simply cannot continue to increase the die size to make up for engineering failures. Nvidia didn't even bother making a card for gamers this time, they had to essentially make up reasons for gamers to even consider buying it. Right now you aren't getting squat from the RT or AI features of the RTX series.

    Nvidia and AMD are both companies and they will seek to maximize profits. It's just that Nvidia so happens to like to screw their customers over in the process, whether directly or behind their backs.

    AMD have had some poorly priced cards but they don't have nearly as many instances of tactics that directly hurt the competitive nature of the market and the consumer. God I don't hope we see another Intel here and loose 10 years of possible GPU advances to incremental increases from Nvidia. We've already got $200 price premiums for reference cards.
    wiyosaya, EndRessentiment and Reehahs like this.
  14. gamerk2

    gamerk2 TS Addict Posts: 218   +146

    Your missing the point; NVIDIA is taking the long view here. Remember GPUs are a few nodes behind CPUs; you can still die shrink to gain performance by simply adding more transistors. However, those days are fast coming to an end, and NVIDIA knows it. They also know that there really isn't anything that can be done going forward to make rasterization more accurate then it already is; why do you think there has been such a focus on things like anti-aliasing modes, variable-rate-refresh, and now Ray Tracing? They need to offer something new in order to justify purchasing new cards, since graphically there haven't been any real advancements since DX9 came out; the only benefit has been through more GPU number-crunching power.

    Likewise, NVIDIA doesn't expect Ray-Tracing to be a thing. What NVIDIA is going for here is having some effects start using the technology, so when there is enough processing power to do it devs can hit the ground running. RTX is basically a beta version of what we'll eventually be getting in a decade or so.
  15. trparky

    trparky TS Evangelist Posts: 483   +356

    About the only good thing about AMD graphics cards is that you don't have to buy expensive monitors to get frame rate syncing.
    Sausagemeat likes this.
  16. Theinsanegamer

    Theinsanegamer TS Evangelist Posts: 1,516   +1,722

    GPUs are behind CPUs node wise?

    Since when? nvidia and AMD both use 14nm, same as ryzen 1, ryzen 2 is a tiny die shrink tweak with 12nm.

    DX11 brought a LOT of enhancements over DX9, such as lighting effects and terrain deformation. Unless you play all your games at low settings, you know very well that DX9's feature set has been obsolete for years.

    If nvidia doesnt expect ray tracing to be a thing, why are they investing in it? If they expect it to take of in a decade or so as you describe, then by definition, they DO expect ray tracing to become a thing.
  17. gamerk2

    gamerk2 TS Addict Posts: 218   +146

    GPUs have only just caught up in the last year or two. Point being: The age of die shrinks is over.

    At the end of the day, DX11 didn't add that much. HBAO+ is the headliner, and sure, a few shadow effects were added. But you are throwing more resources at diminishing returns; there just isn't much more Rasterization can do at this point; hence the shift toward Ray Tracing.

    Ray Tracing will be a thing, just not this generation. But NVIDIA is putting itself in position to be ahead by defining the architecture and APIs ahead of time, giving devs a head start on development, and of course, locking them into the NVIDIA ecosystem.
  18. Footlong

    Footlong TS Addict Posts: 123   +62

    You do know that AMD has both Sony and Microsoft as their SOC provider. You also do know that both already pledging to continue to do business with AMD instead of Nvidia, right? AMD went sour because of bad management. Also, AMD overpaid for ATI and ditched Nvidia proposal. Jensen Huang started his career at AMD. Lisa is doing a terrific job, but AMD's problem are mostly caused by their executives.
  19. Dimitrios

    Dimitrios TS Guru Posts: 385   +261

    Well said!
  20. Evernessince

    Evernessince TS Evangelist Posts: 3,797   +3,183

    There are a few incorrect assumptions here. The first of which is that rasterization cannot be improved. Most RT effects can already be emulated using rasterization using a fraction of the GPU power. Saying that it's the end of rasterization is crazy. The technology is only limited by the creativity of the game engine developers. The only thing this RT push has done is remind everyone how much it wasn't designed for games and it is thoroughly inefficient.

    Nvidia has already stated that MCM GPUs are likely the future and you can bet your bottom dollar both AMD and Nvidia are currently targeting that at some point. Once that happens, the market with shift. The future of computer chips won't just be node size and we are seeing revolutionary manufacturing techniques emerge that expand the scope in other dimensions.

    "since graphically there haven't been any real advancements since DX9 came out"

    What? At least 100x the polygon count, a bevy of advanced lighting technologies, tessellation, advanced physics systems, the list goes on. That's not even counting that many people prefer to play at higher refresh rates now then ever before.

    Given the current state of Nvidia's RT, it won't be a thing next generation either. In fact Nvidia's next card needs to quadruple RT performance on their flagship card just to get 4K 60 FPS. That's not even considering the lower end models of their cards. So yeah, if Nvidia spends 3 generations of cards solely focusing on RT performance they might actually have a decent flagship product if 4K 60 FPS is still even considered enthusiast at that point. Mainstream consumers will have to wait longer. And remember, that's not even full Ray Tracing. That's Nvidia's RT Rasterization Hybrid and that's only using a single effect at a time. You can either have reflections or global illumination but not both and it doesn't replace current rasterization even if you did somehow get both working. I don't see a universe where a trade-off like that is worth it.
  21. Dextruction5

    Dextruction5 TS Member

    It's pointless to say buy the underdog, because you are effectively saying is you should buy the worse product for a higher price in the hope that somehow your effective drop in the water money wise is going to change the fortunes of a company. AMD is releasing good CPU's lately, and that definitely wasn't due to millions of people buying aging FX processors in order to support the "underdog", but it was because the AMD management got shaken up enough to a point to where they finally realised how to make a competitive product.

    TL:DR IF I can buy a GTX 1080ti that's faster, more power efficient and cheaper, I'm not going to suddenly buy the "underdog" AMD Vega 64 that is slower, more power hungry, and more expensive, just to somehow make AMD better, because that would make me an ***** for buying something worse for a higher price.
    Footlong likes this.
  22. Lew Zealand

    Lew Zealand TS Guru Posts: 511   +389

    You don't buy AMD in the high side of GPU performance any more unless you're factoring in FreeSync. Even then…

    However AMD owns the high-sales middle ground around $150-$250 as the 570 and 580 have recently been $150-200. That's a much better deal than the 3GB 1060 at $200 or the 6GB at $250.
  23. Evernessince

    Evernessince TS Evangelist Posts: 3,797   +3,183

    Well first, Nvidia isn't cheaper. Not by a long shot. The 2080 Ti is $1,200. The 10XX series isn't in production anymore either so don't expect to be able to buy those for long either.

    The 1080 ti isn't cheaper then a Vega 64. The 64 sells for under $500 while the 1080 Ti sells for $720+.

    I have no idea where you get the idea that the AMD products were more expensive, but it's completely false.

    In fact I saw a Vega 56 for $300 flat the other day. The Vega 56 overclocks very well too, GamersNexus did an article showing how they could OC the card on air past a 2070. $300 for a card that outperforms a $550 - $600 card.

    Why don't we tone the hyperbole down a couple notches here and state the realities of the market, eh? Nvidia controls the high end and you will pay out the butt for it. On the mid to low end AMD is very competitive and offers good products. The RX 580 is a better mid range pick then the 1060 and the RX Vega 56 is a better midrange pick then the 2070 or 1070 Ti. The 2070 in particular is awful value. Save yourself $130 and get a 1070 Ti.
  24. TheGiantRat

    TheGiantRat TS Rookie

    Well that is the problem of short vision (I.e stupidity).
    You might be able to buy 1 generation of card or 2 at good price. Then what? Complain about the price hike like most folks do?
    Think ahead.
  25. Dextruction5

    Dextruction5 TS Member

    Here in the UK a good vega 64 is about the same price as a 1080 ti armor, and that's if you can find the vega 64 in stock. Also, the gamersnexus video shows the card with 213% power target, which means that it is pulling about 550w alone, and as such really shouldn't be considered as the parts don't withstant such power draw easily. It's pointless to say "But in the US the price is x", as I (and a lot of other people) don't live in the US, and prices in Europe are generally different, and over here Nvidia is a way better deal (I'm not a fanboy I just want the best performance for the best price I can get)
    For Example:
    Asus Strix RX 580:£270 Asus Strix GTX 1060:£280 (Nvidia has lower power draw and slightly better performance)
    Asus Strix RX Vega 56:£400 MSI Gaming GTX 1070 Ti:£405 (1070 ti is faster)
    Asus Strix RX Vega 64:£460 GIgabyte G1 GTX 1080:£480 (GTX 1080 is slightly faster)

    And this is without even mentioning the used market where you can get a good 1080 ti for about £430, which is way faster than the vega 64 or the gtx 1080, but still uses less power than the AMD card.
    Sausagemeat likes this.

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