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AMD Radeon R9 390X variant will come water-cooled with High Bandwidth Memory

By Shawn Knight ยท 69 replies
May 7, 2015
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  1. amd fiji reference pcb short gtx reference r9 295x2 performance amd radeon gpu graphics card video card r9 390x radeon r9 300 series fiji xt water-cooled air-cooled pcb

    Many in the PC gaming world are turning their attention to AMD’s upcoming Radeon R9 300 series launch and specifically, the R9 390X. According to the latest scuttlebutt, this card will ship with two different SKUs – an air-cooled version and a water-cooled variant.

    The air-cooled R9 390X will feature a lengthy reference design like we’ve seen with higher-end cards in the past. The water-cooled model, however, is said to use a much shorter PCB that’s roughly the size of Nvidia’s GeForce GTX 970 reference design.

    AMD is planning to use HBM, or High Bandwidth Memory, with the water-cooled SKU. For those not familiar, HBM replaces the typical memory chips surrounding the GPU package with 3D-stacked DRAM dies that are all packaged under the same IHS alongside the GPU.

    Current rumors suggest we’ll see 8GB of video memory, GCN 1.2 architecture, 4,096 stream processors, 256 TMUs, 128 ROPs and a 4,096-bit wide HBM interface that’ll result in a memory bandwidth of 640GB/sec.

    None of this should be a surprise really as rumors of AMD using HBM date back to at least a year ago. What may come as a surprise, however, is that AMD is reportedly planning to ditch the DVI connector on its reference board. The board will instead offer three DisplayPort connections and a single HDMI 2.0 port.

    Most expect the new cards to show up at Computex early next month meaning they could be available for purchase by the end of June.

    Image via WCCFtech

    Permalink to story.

  2. Having to resort to water cooling just to be on par with nvidia what a joke
    amd with their hot running primitive brute force gpus
    DaveBG likes this.
  3. Skidmarksdeluxe

    Skidmarksdeluxe TS Evangelist Posts: 8,647   +3,285

    Well it certainly talks the talk from the looks of things but I'll wait to see the results from real world tests. I expect AMD's drivers will handicap it as usual.
  4. Spykezxp

    Spykezxp TS Addict Posts: 296   +73

    I've been on the fence for the last couple months about getting a Nvidia card over AMD for my new build. Waiting for "new round" of video cards to ship before I make a decision. If AMD does drop the DVI connectors (because most that I have seen have 2), I guess I will be going Nvidia. I can totally understand dropping 1 of the DVI connectors, but to drop both will cause some issues. I still know plenty of people that have DVI monitors, including myself. And yes, I could just "buy an adapter", but I would rather have a direct connect without the use of adapters if possible.
    InStars and cliffordcooley like this.
  5. Evernessince

    Evernessince TS Evangelist Posts: 3,513   +2,823

    Dropping a video card because of an adapter? Why don't you just go Nvidia now? The game bundle seems like it would entice a person like you enough. That is until you find out you have 3.5 GB of ram, I mean that's way less piddling than buying an adapter...
  6. cliffordcooley

    cliffordcooley TS Guardian Fighter Posts: 11,208   +4,873

    You can stop trolling with nVidia hatred and lies. Sure they put out one card with changes to the way VRAM is accessed. You are making it sound like the whole lineup has been changed.
  7. Evernessince

    Evernessince TS Evangelist Posts: 3,513   +2,823

    I think you are the one putting words into other's mouth. I stated a fact. Can't say I care much of how a troll is going to interpret my words.
  8. cliffordcooley

    cliffordcooley TS Guardian Fighter Posts: 11,208   +4,873

    You saying nVidia users would be happy until they found out they only had 3.5GB of ram, does not need interpretation. That statement is pretty clear, you are judging all of nVidia based on just one card. And to make matters worse you are comparing that to someone Else's statement, which is legitimately based on all AMD cards. And to top it all off you are assuming the extra 0.5GB is a concern to everyone.
  9. Adhmuz

    Adhmuz TechSpot Paladin Posts: 1,890   +686

    Wow Buddy, take you hate elsewhere, after your reply to my post on the other thread and your condescending attitude here towards Spyke and Cliff I see you for your true colors, just someone out for a fight. No valuable input towards the thread just bashing on other's comments, the definition of a troll if you didn't already know, but you seem very familiar with your own kind. Have a nice day ( :

    Back to the topic on hand, the R9 390X, anyone expecting this to sell for anything less than $1000 is probably crazy, if this is as fast as AMD is hoping they are not going to let it go cheaply. It'll be worth waiting for the drivers to mature and perhaps even a revision before it's piratical to buy a card with this new architecture.
    cliffordcooley likes this.
  10. Lionvibez

    Lionvibez TS Evangelist Posts: 1,427   +594

    lol you short sited fool.

    I have a kraken G10 + H55 on my 7970Ghz to reduce noise and to keep it cool while overclocking.

    And I welcome more GPU's to be coming out with water cooling solutions you wants to listen to high rpm fans in a quiet computer I don't.

    But just based on how you wrote that you are most likely just a NV fan boy so why bother commenting on a card you will clearly never buy and have no interest in.

    lol this site attracts the best Trolling guest I've seen in awhile.

    I'm also don't want them to totally get rid of DVI as my current monitor still uses it, I however also have a display port on it but I still think its too soon.

    This card will most likely come with the adaptor in box so you won't have to buy anything.

    This card will only sell for that price if its equal to the Titan X in speed and I think it will sit between the 980 and the titan X when it comes to performance so I'm thinking closer to $699.
    Last edited: May 7, 2015
  11. dividebyzero

    dividebyzero trainee n00b Posts: 4,840   +1,267

    I think your estimate is closer to the truth of the matter. The 390X as an AIO water cooled card is likely to be compared to the 295X2 both in pricing and performance, so that could cap the upper limit of what AMD could charge - although if the card is at least initially in short supply they could charge a short term premium - but again, I am guessing NVidia wheels out a GTX 980 Ti at ~ $649 (as it did with the 780 Ti) which would probably limit high-priced sales of the 390X past the initial flourish. The 390X could well shade the Titan X, but I suspect most of the reviews in mid-June will be pitting the 390X against a batch of 980 Ti Classified/FTW/Windforce/Strix/HoF/Lightning-TF5 boards.
  12. simonjjjooo likes this.
  13. Lionvibez

    Lionvibez TS Evangelist Posts: 1,427   +594

    Based on how gpu releases have gone in the past your post is spot on.

    lol this is the one time I will agree with a guest.

    The whole NV has gold standard drivers and AMD are not is just old news.

    And most of the people still spewing that FUD haven't used an AMD card in like 10 years.

    Both Vendors have drivers issue and bugs and I see just as many people in forums with gpu issues from NV as I do from AMD.
    Last edited: May 7, 2015
  14. Evernessince

    Evernessince TS Evangelist Posts: 3,513   +2,823

    I always find it funny when people try to call out "trolls" as people unable to provide facts when indeed, the person they are calling out does but they themselves provide nothing more.

    You're going to sit here and try to bash me because some guy is going to drop a video card because he doesn't want to use an adapter? Or because somehow cliff's post of

    "you can stop trolling with nVidia hatred and lies. Sure they put out one card with changes to the way VRAM is accessed. You are making it sound like the whole lineup has been changed."

    is more factual than mine?

    In what self conceited world do you live in to belive this is a factual statement?
  15. cliffordcooley

    cliffordcooley TS Guardian Fighter Posts: 11,208   +4,873

    What facts? There were no facts in your comment, but you stated it as if there was. nVidia cards do not all have the VRAM alteration of the GTX 970. That is no excuse to fear moving to nVidia!
    Adhmuz likes this.
  16. I swear if it wasn't for some of the articles in this site and the awesome dividedbyzero comments I wouldn't be coming back to this tech site anymore, every time there is an AMD / Nvidia article some of the comments just turn the entire article comment section into a hatred fest that just turns me off the site entirely.

    I know I'm using a guest account to post this but can we please have some kind of moderation in the comment section for the guest's posts.
  17. dividebyzero

    dividebyzero trainee n00b Posts: 4,840   +1,267

    Oddly enough, I know of a few people including myself that dismissed a whole generation of AMD cards because of that exact scenario. Hooking up 1-2 overdriven 2560x1440 panels (esp cheaper Korean base models) can be quite problematic if people don't take note of the I/O options of their graphics.
    To this day, I still get people asking me to troubleshoot no video issues because they assume that all DVI are created equal or that they can circumvent bandwidth electrical specifications with (sometimes grossly overpriced) adapters.
    madboyv1 likes this.
  18. hahahanoobs

    hahahanoobs TS Evangelist Posts: 2,359   +831

    The 970 AND the 980 qualify for W3 and BAK. The 980 isn't "gimped". Nor is the 960 which comes with W3.
    Last edited: May 7, 2015
    cliffordcooley likes this.
  19. hahahanoobs

    hahahanoobs TS Evangelist Posts: 2,359   +831

    AMD hasn't had a WHQL driver since December!
  20. Evernessince

    Evernessince TS Evangelist Posts: 3,513   +2,823

    I'm not going to sit here and say adapters are perfect, they aren't, and as you said cannot exceed the specifications of the cable standard.

    He was taking an extreme stance, I think, to dismiss an entire series of video cards. I decided to take a satirical counterpoint, and everyone seems to come out of the woodwork here.

    Read previous posts. I only talked about the 970. The 960 is indeed gimped as well. It's memory interface is much slower, hence why it's stomped at high resolutions.

    My original post pointed out the 970 half gig memory issue. That's the old card with the issue. I have a Gigabyte GTX Windforce 970, so I'm not shooting blind.
  21. I wonder why it's "Water Cooled" and not "Liquid Cooled"?
    You'd want some non corrosive coolant in there.
    Die DVI die. If your spending the money on high end video cards then you want 4k resolutions, DVI can do upto 1080p...
  22. dividebyzero

    dividebyzero trainee n00b Posts: 4,840   +1,267

    That is incorrect.
    DVI (single link) supports 1920x1200 @ 60Hz
    DVI (dual link) supports 2560x1600 @60Hz
    Steve likes this.
  23. Burty117

    Burty117 TechSpot Chancellor Posts: 3,430   +1,202

    Not to add fuel to the fire here but I thought the 970 still had 4GB of VRAM?
    Just that the last 512mb of it was severely limited bandwidth wise? Like 80% slower or something along those lines.

    If that is the case then why does everyone keep referring to it as 3.5GB? I know the last 512MB is considerably slower than the rest but the memory is there.

    Anyway, back on topic, I like the idea of more water-cooled (AIO) Graphics cards coming out, keeps GPU temps nice and is considerably quieter, especially when overclocking.

    I kinda wish Nvidia third party vendors would experiment more with this kind of setup without charging an arm and a leg (me wishfully hoping for a 980Ti AIO water cooled EVGA Superclocked).
    madboyv1 likes this.
  24. GeforcerFX

    GeforcerFX TS Evangelist Posts: 843   +344

    It does still have the 512mb extra but most of the testing I saw when the whole issue blew up had most games capping at 3.5gb's and on the few that went above they began to have frame stutter (shadow of mordor was really the only one). Realistically the whole issue was blown out in my opinion people read the reviews and watched all the benchmarking on the web and that's what helped them make the decision, seeing it's performance not what the specs on the box say. When the issue was risen up people flipped out even though they still had the exact same performance that they knew they were getting.
    Burty117 and hahahanoobs like this.
  25. simonjjjooo

    simonjjjooo TS Rookie

    A joke and yet it obviously means the card will have huge performance as its nearly twice as efficient.
    It also menas it will be nearly silent.

    I think the jokes on you.

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