AMD has been giving us a taste of the new Vega graphics card architecture at CES 2017 for a very long time. What we did not know at the time was that it would not be in the hands of the consumer until August 2017.
AMD Vega GPUs also found a lot of success as cryptocurrency mining cards that skyrocketed the prices until a few months ago. Fortunately, anyone looking for one of these gaming cards must be able to find it again at or near MSRP. This is good news, because recent rumors suggest that we will not see AMD Navi for a long time yet.
Not that we necessarily need them. AMD wins the war for the most stable riders on the market, so the Vega cards we already have are doing fine.
Cut to the chase
- What is it? The successor of AMD's Polaris GPU architecture
- When is it out? August 14, 2017
- What does it cost? $ 499 or £ 549 (about AU $ 630)
AMD Radeon RX Vega release date
AMD & # 39; s affordable, consumer-focused Radeon RX Vega 64, launched in August 2017, with three versions including a standard version, an aluminum-coated limited edition version and a fluid-cooled design with higher clock speeds.
AMD's Radeon RX Vega 56 with lower specifications, which is a direct competitor of the Nvidia GTX 1070, was introduced somewhat later in August.
AMD then worked with Intel, all companies, to create 8-generation Kaby Lake-G processors with integrated AMD Vega graphics for laptops – on top of packing some of the best laptops with powerful GPUs, such as the spectacular Dell XPS 15 2-in -1.
Later, in February 2018, AMD launched the Ryzen 3 2200G and Ryzen 5 2400G APUs with discrete Class Vega graphics that will be of great help to anyone who wants to build a great home theater PC on a budget.
We would not see a new graphics card from AMD until he collaborated with PowerColor to introduce the Radeon RX Vega 56 Nano to Computex 2018.
Now, a year later, instead of seeing rumors about a new graphics card on the horizon, we see rumors that the opposite is true: we wait a while for the next AMD graphics cards. You are likely to invest safely in the Vega 56 or Vega 64.
AMD has hinted that AMD Vega 7nm GPUs is one thing, but we still do not know when these more efficient chips are released, or even when these are consumer products. We will just have to wait and see.
And if you can not justify the money for a Vega card, AMD has released the Ryzen 3 2200G and the Ryzen 5 2400G APUs with Vega graphics on February 12, 2018.
AMD Radeon RX Vega prize
In August 2017, the AMD Radeon RX Vega 64 was launched as a stand-alone card for $ 499 or £ 549 (about AU $ 630).
That is a big step forward from the Radeon RX 500 series, which starts at $ 169 (about £ 136, AU $ 219), but this is meant to be AMD's enthusiastic class graphics card. It is a long-awaited successor to the largely defunct Radeon R9 Fury X, which until the end still went for a cool $ 389 (about £ 315 AU $ 505).
In addition, this award is competitive with the $ 549 (£ 539, AU $ 1,299) Nvidia GTX 1080 Founders Edition.
After launching the Vega 64 in the US, AMD offered two other editions of the card that could only be purchased as part of Radeon Packs & # 39 ;, which combined two free games, and discounts on a curved CF751 Ultra wide wide FreeSync screen of the Samsung CF791 and a nice $ 100 discount on a Ryzen 7 processor and motherboard. The packages are unfortunately not available to buy at the time of writing.
Unfortunately, these hardware discounts are only used when users buy the combination of the monitor and the CPU / motherboard at the same time as their Vega GPU. Of course, users can choose not to buy the extra components and peripherals while still getting the two free games, confirmed – in the US at least – to be Wolfenstein II and Prey.
The limited-edition AMD Radeon RX Vega 64 came as part of a Radeon Black Pack for $ 599 (£ 460, AU $ 750). Meanwhile, the liquid-cooled Vega 64 ran for $ 699 (£ 530, AU $ 875), and can only be purchased as part of AMD's Radeon Aqua Pack.
Finally, you can buy the AMD Radeon RX Vega 56 for $ 400 (approximately £ 284, AU $ 500) MSRP.
At the end of the day, Vega was – at least at the launch – as competitive for Nvidia as Ryzen for Intel. Fortunately, due to the cryptocurrency market cooling, AMD Vega cards have dropped to a reasonable price. They are not entirely dependent on MSRP, but they are fairly close – you do not have to worry about spending 2-3x MSRP on your GPU upgrade.
Specifications AMD Radeon RX Vega
After the livestream event Capsaicin 2 2017 AMD revealed the exact specifications for the two new Vega GPUs, as well as the underlying Vega 10 architecture.
From the graph above it is clear that the most powerful version of the set will be the liquid-cooled version of the Radeon RX Vega 64. The more expensive water-cooled version works on higher base / boost clocks, despite sharing identical specifications with its air-cooled twins.
The RX Vega 56, on the other hand, is located at Nvidia & # 39; s GeForce GTX 1070 at $ 400 (approximately £ 305, AU $ 505). However, have mentioned a performance that weighed much heavier than that of the biggest competition while playing triple A games at 2560 x 1440.
Like the Polaris 10 architecture that preceded it, AMD's Polaris 10 architecture is built on a 14nm FinFET process that ultimately makes it more energy-efficient and robust in performance.
Vega 10 is also noticeably skewed towards delivering more computing power than rough graphics strength such as Nvidia's Pascal GPUs. This will probably mean that Vega will be better able to handle the complex calculations of procedural surfaces, volumetric lighting and the overall quality of the in-game graphics.
This era of Vega GPUs also completely closed the GDDR5 memory for a new format known as HBM2, or a memory with high bandwidth. AMD believes that its efficient memory offers a 75% smaller footprint than GDDR5 and at the same time 3.5 times more energy efficient.
AMD also claims that high-bandwidth cache control from Vega will improve the maximum frame rate by 50% and the minimum frame rate by 100% over GDDR5 memory.
Interestingly, Vega 10 is also designed to support up to 16 GB of HBM2 memory – what we have already seen from Radeon Vega Frontier Edition – so that Nvidia's Titan X can finally get some AMD competition.
Keep an eye on us for more information on all that AMD Vega is, as we will update this page with the latest data. In the meantime, ensure that you upgrade to the latest version of AMD Radeon Software Crimson ReLive for one of the GPU control functions.
Gabe Carey also contributed to this article