Framed by AMD’s Financial Analysts Day, Raja Koduri has been talking about a future Vega card, which is slated for launch by the end of June. Unfortunately gamers will still have to wait until the third quarter, since the first card is going to address professional users.
The card that has been shown on stage goes by the name “Radeon Vega Frontier Edition”, where the “Frontier Edition” part or short “FE” is surprisingly similar to NVIDIA’s “Founders Edition”. This particular upcoming card from AMD is to compete with NVIDIA’s Tesla P100 accelerator. To show that this particular Vega based card is anything but slow they’ve presented results from “DeepBench”, which appear to reveal that the Vega GPU is capable of solving the calculations within 88ms while the Tesla P100 needs 133ms. What’s unknown is whether the test requires Half Precision or Single Precision, which would have been quite an interesting detail to know.
Having a look at the specs the Radeon Vega Frontier Edition should be capable of pumping out about 13 TFLOPS FP32 performance and 25 TFLOPS FP16 performance. The chip itself features 4096 ALUs, a clock speed of 1600 MHz and a total of 16GB of HBM2 memory. It looks like this is exactly the card that was mentioned in rumors a few days ago. Back then test results have surface showing a card with precisely those specifications running ComputeBench.
Since AMD is using 16 Gigabyte HBM2 memory there must be two stacks in place with 8 layers each. Regarding memory bandwidth Vega is supposed to deliver 480 Gigabyte per second, which means the memory must be running at 930 MHz. In theory HBM2 should be capable of 1000 MHz but it looks like so far that’s not happening in the case of AMD Vega based cards.
During his time on stage Raja Koduri also showed the card, which features a dual-slot design with radial (blower-type) fan and a 6-pin as well as an 8-pin power connector. Interestingly a rendering of the card shows two 8-pin power connectors. It could be possible that at the time, when this rendering was done AMD calculated with higher TDP.
Finally launching the professional part of AMD’s Vega based GPUs is definitely a step into the right direction, but what people are actually waiting for are the gaming cards. Raja Koduri didn’t share any additional details on that but at least he mentioned that the gaming parts should be powerful enough to steadily hold 60 fps at UHD (3840 x 2160) resolution. If we compare that to what NVIDIA has to offer these days then it would mean that Vega is supposed to compete with the GeForce GTX 1080 Ti.
Last but not least we still don’t know when AMD is going to launch the gaming cards, which could possibly go by the name Radeon RX Vega. Nevertheless we’re hoping that the card will be launched somewhen in Q3, best case at Gamescom.