AMD Radeon RX 7900 Graphics Cards With RDNA 3 Architecture Arriving December 13 For Up To $999

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Advanced Micro Devices said it will ship its AMD Radeon RX 7900 XTX and RX 7900 XT graphics cards, built on its RDNA 3 graphics architecture, on December 13.

The launch comes a month after AMD launched its Ryzen 7000 processors based on the Zen 4 central processing unit architecture. Together, the goal is to push the boundaries of gaming innovation, AMD CEO Lisa Su said in a news conference.

The cards will be available on December 13, with the XTX available for $999 (with 24GB of memory) and the XT (20GB) for $899. That’s certainly cheaper than Nvidia’s high-end graphics card, the GeForce RTX 4090. which started selling for $1,600 in September.

AMD Radeon 7900 XTX graphics chip.

Su said AMD’s goal is to achieve cross-platform gaming leadership, with design victories not just on PC, but with gaming-specific hardware such as Valve’s Steam Deck, the Microsoft Xbox Series X/S and the Sony PlayStation 5.

The new graphics chips use a “chiplet” design that uses different manufacturing processes, such as 5 nanometer or 6 nanometer production on the same chip. With this technology, modern processors contain multiple chips, called chiplets, rather than a single monolithic chip on a single substrate.

That helps it achieve 54% higher performance per watt and 18% higher frequency, 2.7 times peak bandwidth at 61 teraflops, twice instructions per clock and DisplayPort 2.1 for 4K gaming, Su said.

“RDNA 3 enables the first chiplet gaming GPU,” said Su.

AMD’s Scott Herkelman shows off the AMD Radeon 7900 XTX graphics card.

The graphics compute (GCD) is built with 5nm, while the memory cache dies (MCD, six of the chiplets in total) are built with 6nm fabrication. That makes it possible to get a bandwidth of 5.3 terabytes per second and 24 GB of GDDR6 graphics memory.

All told, the RDNA 3 graphics chips will contain a whopping 58 billion transistors.

“That gives us an incredible amount of game performance,” said Su.

The new graphics cards that use the chips are the AMD Radeon RX 7900 XTX 24GB and the Radeon RX 7900 XT 20GB.

The cards are optimized for high-resolution gaming with unified compute units with 165% more transistors per square millimeter, Sam Naffziger, senior vice president and corporate fellow at AMD, said in a press briefing.

AMD’s Frank Azor

“Chiplets are the right process technology for the right task,” he said.

They enable a second-generation Infinity Cache in the MCDs, meaning the graphics chip consumes less power and time by pulling data from the cache rather than moving from the chip to the DRAM, he said. In general, the functions allow to process times more instructions per given clock cycle. It also has 2.7 times more AI performance with special AI accelerators.

With the new graphics chips, AMD has unveiled its Radiance Display engine 8K165 and 4K480 display technologies. That enables better monitors with up to 68 billion colors and 12-bit per channel color, and DisplayLink bandwidth up to 54 Gbps.

The new dual media engine with two simultaneous encoding and decoding streams along with AI-enhanced video encoding. So it has 1.8 times the motor frequency, cutting the video export time in half. It has decoupled clocks in different parts of the chip, with front-end at 2.5GHz and shaders at 2.3GHz. That yields 15% frequency improvements and 25% energy savings, Naffziger said.

The flagship graphics card with the new graphics chip is the RX 7900 XTX, Scott Herkelman, senior vice president and general manager of graphics at AMD, said in a news conference. It can be paired with the AMD Ryzen 9 7950X CPU.

AMD's latest graphics card.
AMD’s latest graphics card.

The map is up to 1.7 times faster on Cyberpunk 2077 and 1.5 times faster on Call of Duty: Modern Warfare II. It has 96 compute units, a clock speed of 2.3 GHz, 24 GB 384-bit GDDR6 memory and enables 2.1 DisplayPort, AV1 encoding and decoding. And it uses 355 watts of power. It has the same footprint as the RX 6950 XT card. You take out the old card and put in a new one. At the beginning of 2023, new high-resolution screens will be shipped from Samsung, among others. Samsung’s Odyssey Neo G9 will be an 8K ultrawide monitor.

At 1440K, the card can run Apex Legends at 300 frames per second. You can play Assassin’s Creed Valhalla – Dawn of Ragnarok at 96 frames per second with DisplayPort 1.4. DirectX ray tracing is coming to Halo Infinite on AMD hardware.

Falcon Northwest’s Talon as the new AMD Radeon RX 7900 XT graphics card.

AMD has partnered with Ubisoft for the Snowdrop Engine to enable games like the upcoming Avatar title, and it has also partnered with Epic Games on Unreal Engine 5. Herkelman said the new cards are the most advanced, with up to 1 .4 times faster 4K gaming and up to 355 watts of power consumption. Nvidia’s 4090 comes in at about 440 watts, while the 4080 comes in at 320 watts and $1,200.

Herkelman said in a Q&A that AMD’s graphics chips compete in the under-$1,000 gaming graphics segment, meaning Nvidia’s 4070 graphics chip and 4080 chips are the targets, unlike Nvidia’s GeForce RTX 4090 flagship graphics chip. which was unveiled in September.

“We obviously want to be the definitive graphics chip in any esports space,” said Herkelman.

Frank Azor, chief architect of gaming solutions and marketing, said AMD is updating its Adrenaline software to run the games with a unified user interface and an unlocked experience with no registration required. AMD has partnered with Open Broadcaster Software to enable better video recording and streaming. The AMD SmartAccess Video distributes encoding and decoding workloads across both the CPU and graphics chip to get a 30% improvement in video processing.

Azor said esports players will feel confident enough to go beyond 1080p and still get adequate frame rates, with graphics up to 4K gaming at the fastest speeds.

Herkeleman said he’s hopeful that gamers can get their hands on the cards in December and beyond, despite the chaotic supply chain picture of recent weeks.

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