December 2011 22th, launch of the new HD7900 series, and starting with the HD7970 card.
AMD showed us a presentation in Powerpoint format with impressive numbers, which must be verified with a sample on-hand by using a large number of synthetic benchmarks and games. We have seen leaked pictures on the web and leaked facts but these are the real official slides.
Southern Islands is a family of three 28nm chips, Tahiti, Pitcairn and Cape Verde, each aimed for a different performance segment:
Graphics Core Next, Eyefinity 2.0, and App Acceleration are the three big ones:
Graphics Core Next is a Revolutionary Architecture 28 nm Process
Graphics Core Next is the base on which this family is built. GCN is a step function in terms of graphics and compute capabilities. They set out not only to create an architecture that was tailored for the massive shift towards compute that they are driving in the industry, but didn’t settle on the graphics front either. This architecture continues to drive up performance in traditional graphics workloads by increasing overall efficiencies adapting to the latest workloads in DX11 engines.
TSMC’s 28nm process and PCI Express Gen 3 are also instrumental in driving up that efficiency, and making sure that have the right horsepower, and enough data to feed it. PowerTune and ZeroPower are also key in this efficiency, since AMD wants to make best use of every Watt 7000 series cards pull from the grid.
Eyefinity is getting an overhaul as well. AMD has new Eyefinity features available, new surround audio technologies, and the ability to drive stereoscopic content across multiple panels.
Thirdly, the ecosystem of GPU acceleration is accelerating! AMD has shipped over 100 million DirectX capable products, and the introduction of our lineup of APUs is making it more and more attractive for software developers. Tons of mainstream applications make use of our GPU now.
Tahiti is AMDs next big chip. Aimed at the high end enthusiasts, Tahiti is the worlds most powerful GPU. It’s packed with compute units and a 384 bit memory interface, and has enough horsepower to slice through games like BF3, Crysis, Deus Ex up to 40% faster than any other GPU on the market. Not only does it perform, but it does so efficiently, and doesn’t compromise on other areas like idle power. It’s the perfect GPU for an elite gaming PC.
Next comes Pitcairn. Pitcairn is AMDs GPU for the hardcore gaming that love sweet spot products. It will bring loads of performance to your system, more than any other sweet spot GPU in the past.
Lastly, Verde is their balanced, or performance, GPU for people on a budget. Just like the RV770 or Juniper before it, Verde is targeted right at gamers that want that agile system that can be high performance, silent.
Let’s take now a look at the product itself ->