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Old Mar 4, 2012, 11:51 PM   #1
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AMD AMD Radeon HD 7850 & HD 7870 Launch Review @ Rage3D.com

AMD previews the AMD Radeon HD 7800 series, codenamed Pitcairn, before it's March 19th debut. Is Pitcairn the spiritual successor to the people's hero, RV770?

AMD Radeon HD 7850 & HD 7870 Launch Review @ Rage3D.com
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Old Mar 5, 2012, 01:18 AM   #2
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hm..nice article, but isn't 7950 / 7970 faster? I saw no mention of them in the benchmarks, makes me wonder - what's the point other than confusing? I must be stupid
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Old Mar 5, 2012, 01:23 AM   #3
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Nice Review! Some of the charts have the 570SC as 670SC. Hopefully a CFX review will be done with this card, with zero power tech would be a very nice low power and cool setup for most things.

Wow! Faster then a 570 for the most part not too far off from a 580, more ram, $100 cheaper - -> Nvidia is sucking at this point in time .

Where is Kepler to balance the universe again?
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Old Mar 5, 2012, 01:24 AM   #4
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Some of the bars go off the charts and the review doesnt say what resolutions they were ran at. The only one that said what the resolution was Dirt3 on ultra settings.

From reading at Anandtech, Its pretty impressive to see the $349 7870 keep up with the $500 580 at 2560x1600 and at the same time require less wattage (175w vs 250w). At stock clocks its only an avg of about 5-6fps behind the 7950 at 2560x1600. With a minor OC the 7870 could outdo the 7950.

On the other hand the 7850 looks to be gimped due to its slower core clock speeds. With a 1ghz oc it would pretty much be nearly at the 580 performance wise. Not bad for a $250 gpu thats nearly half the price of the 580.

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Old Mar 5, 2012, 09:49 AM   #5
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They're all 1080. I'll fix up the charts tonight to correct the 570/670 typo and lines. Be sure you don't have zoom in/out set when you're viewing the charts.
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Old Mar 5, 2012, 03:08 PM   #6
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Wow when did you guys become the 1st site to get and review Kepler cards ? I am sadly disappointed that the 670SC failed to thoroughly stomp any of it's competition ;-) /wink

Anywho good review overall though I am still no partial to the choice of layout R3D uses (often the graphs either bug out , ie bars extend off chart, no color differentiation between products) but still a decent review. I do love the compute tests, and it seems AMD's GCN is a monster there (as a byproduct Tesselation) along with expected power savings.. almost 100W less vs comparable GTX 570SC.. prices though leave much to be desired, though I am sure SP will harp on that some more ;-)
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Old Mar 6, 2012, 02:44 AM   #7
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why do Rage3d reviews always read like an advertisement for AMD? Can't u guys be a little more critical in your assesment of their products? I have'nt read any of your reviews since the AMD FX fiasco, when u guys actually commended them while every other site condemned them for failing BIG time with the FX line. Reading this review also proves my point, these cards have'nt moved the industry forward, my 5870 is still kicking as$ after 3 years! that's pathetic. Their price/performance ratio is sad and its really not much of an upgrade for anyone that bought a mid-range card (in the same price category) in the past 2 years. critisize them for this failure, don't just keep heaping praise on them!
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Old Mar 6, 2012, 08:15 AM   #8
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You're right, price should go down every year no matter what happens in the world or how the company financial statements look. They're using a new process node, that means it has to be cheaper! Plus, they've got so much competition, too!

Feel free to tell me why exactly the perf/w and features of the Radeon 7800 series aren't worth being excited about, why 570 performance in under 150W isn't an achievement, and why when I stated that it was too expensive I'm not criticizing them.

I think you need to be more comprehensive in your reading skills.
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Old Mar 6, 2012, 04:23 PM   #9
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Originally Posted by caveman-jim View Post
You're right, price should go down every year no matter what happens in the world or how the company financial statements look. They're using a new process node, that means it has to be cheaper! Plus, they've got so much competition, too!

Feel free to tell me why exactly the perf/w and features of the Radeon 7800 series aren't worth being excited about, why 570 performance in under 150W isn't an achievement, and why when I stated that it was too expensive I'm not criticizing them.

I think you need to be more comprehensive in your reading skills.
C'mon Caveman they're way too expensive and can't beat cards from the last generation! I'm not bothered by wattage or compute power, I want raw graphics performance and each generation should push the performance envelope by a significant degree. When I bought my 5850 it had the wow factor in abundance and major performance over its predecessor. This gen just stinks.

I think your comment about competition is also a bit puerile. Because Nvidia has not come to market yet does not give AMD the right to fleece it's potential customers.

If they'd have launched these at £50 cheaper they would have cleaned up before Kepler even came out. At these prices a lot of people are going to wait and see and eventually AMD might have to reduce the price to compete.

The only problem being is that many people like me who would have bought these cards at a lower price point will now potentially become Nvidia customers and AMD will lose our business for the foreseeable future.

Let's not forget that Intel launched Sandy Bridge well before Bulldozer and I was able to pick up an i5 2500k for £175 just after launch which at the time I thought was a bargain. Do you think I'll ever buy another AMD CPU?

Are AMD trying to make up for their bulldozer cock-up by fleecing their GPU customers. Are we talking cross-subsidisation here?

Finally this card gives me no reason whatsoever to upgrade my 5850 at his price point right now. Well done AMD!
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Old Mar 6, 2012, 04:50 PM   #10
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Thanks for sharing your opinion.

I, personally, don't care what gpu or cpu you buy. I hope nvidia's offering at the same price point is worth waiting for.

I don't think that many people think the same way you do. But then, I'm purile, so what do I know, right?

Also, I hope we can go back to the 5850 launch and see your complaints about performance/$ over 4850. Surely you complained about that, then?

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Old Mar 6, 2012, 06:15 PM   #11
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I can't help but feel disappointed in the double performance for GPU compute. Looks like a solid gaming card, but I was expecting better double performance. I wonder how much it was crippled, if at all, by AMD to promote the 7950/70 in the GPGPU arena.

It is so bad I'm almost willing to bet I could span floats in my code to emulate double precision and get better performance than using actual doubles.
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Old Mar 6, 2012, 06:52 PM   #12
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It's hardware, Tahiti is 1/2 rate for DP in professional products but 1/4 rate in consumer. For Cape Verde and Pitcairn, DP is hardware, but limited to 1/16 rate. There's a significant difference in transistors used for 1/2 rate vs. 1/16 rate.

AMD's strategy is to use PowerTune, binning and clocks to get Tahiti into lower power levels (TDP). They did it with Cayman. The reason being, they want one asic derivative to cover all markets for GPU Compute. This makes drivers, support, design, way easier.

I've asked lots of times why not make it, and they will come, and it comes down to die area. The market isn't ready to leverage general purpose DP compute in GPU's yet, so they dont want to give up the die area on the most area sensitive designs. Kinda catch 22, but there you go.
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Old Mar 6, 2012, 07:01 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by caveman-jim View Post
It's hardware, Tahiti is 1/2 rate for DP in professional products but 1/4 rate in consumer. For Cape Verde and Pitcairn, DP is hardware, but limited to 1/16 rate. There's a significant difference in transistors used for 1/2 rate vs. 1/16 rate.

AMD's strategy is to use PowerTune, binning and clocks to get Tahiti into lower power levels (TDP). They did it with Cayman. The reason being, they want one asic derivative to cover all markets for GPU Compute. This makes drivers, support, design, way easier.

I've asked lots of times why not make it, and they will come, and it comes down to die area. The market isn't ready to leverage general purpose DP compute in GPU's yet, so they dont want to give up the die area on the most area sensitive designs. Kinda catch 22, but there you go.
Makes sense and good to hear. I hate it when companies cripple their products like that: a bit of potential lost. I can appreciate separate driver teams, one for cad and one for everyone else, since the demands are different enough that combining the optimizations could be nightmarish. Adding in artificial limits just plain sucks, though. Even at 1/4th the rate, Tahiti should kick some Quadro ass, so at least it is competitive.

Hopefully that will lower prices for everyone.
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Old Mar 6, 2012, 07:04 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bigfoot View Post
I can't help but feel disappointed in the double performance for GPU compute. Looks like a solid gaming card, but I was expecting better double performance. I wonder how much it was crippled, if at all, by AMD to promote the 7950/70 in the GPGPU arena.

It is so bad I'm almost willing to bet I could span floats in my code to emulate double precision and get better performance than using actual doubles.
can't say Ive seen (m)any sites that did include DP GPGPU results.. those that did include other GPGPU results shows the 7000 series leaps and bounds above previous gen hardware:

Anandtech

Tomshardware iirc Bitcoin uses DPFP, and shows 6900 ahead and iirc 5800 still are among the best options there.
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Old Mar 6, 2012, 07:29 PM   #15
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Originally Posted by Bigfoot View Post
Makes sense and good to hear. I hate it when companies cripple their products like that: a bit of potential lost. I can appreciate separate driver teams, one for cad and one for everyone else, since the demands are different enough that combining the optimizations could be nightmarish. Adding in artificial limits just plain sucks, though. Even at 1/4th the rate, Tahiti should kick some Quadro ass, so at least it is competitive.

Hopefully that will lower prices for everyone.
The only artificial limitation is Tahiti consumer at 1/4 vs 1/2 for professional. The rest is full speed of the design; it's not crippled, thats as fast as it was intended to go. It's non-trivial to increase DP speed, it costs die area so you have to have a strong market for it. AMD will use the one die for all the compute market, just adjusting TDP via power tune and clocks/CU's, to get the levels wanted.

Tesla's ass looks lined up for a kicking, Quadro remains to be seen.
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Old Mar 7, 2012, 04:02 AM   #16
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For Tahiti is it driver limited for DP or bios limited or hardware switch on final assembly of chip? My guess it is bios limited, meaning will a consumer Tahiti be able to do full DP calculations at 1/2 rate like the bigger FirePro cards?
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Old Mar 7, 2012, 07:48 AM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by caveman-jim View Post

Feel free to tell me why exactly the perf/w and features of the Radeon 7800 series aren't worth being excited about, why 570 performance in under 150W isn't an achievement, and why when I stated that it was too expensive I'm not criticizing them.
lol yes lets buy it for the wattage! great job AMD! wow!

Saying its expensive is really laying it on em! that's some harsh criticism!

its not worth getting excited over because my 3 year old 5870 is 10-20% slower than the 7870. That's pathetic.

anyways, its ur site do as u wish. Just giving my .2 cents.
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Old Mar 7, 2012, 08:43 AM   #18
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Your 5870 is 10-20% slower than a 7870? Are you sure?


You don't want to buy one? It's your money, do as you wish. Telling me I'm not critical enough? Perhaps there's more to graphics cards than your blinkered, narrow view that only performance matters. It doesn't. It may only matter to you, but if you read the review and come to the conclusion that it's not an upgrade for you... guess what? Job done.

Stop being an ass because I don't agree with your assessment you should get 2x performance for less money, just because. I'm happy you've been insulated from the world economic climate but not everybody has. Inflation, Recession, changes in management, strategy, etc. all have effects and they were clearly explained in the article. You don't agree? Fair enough, but you need to defend your opinion with a lot better than '10-20%' faster than a 5870. That's BS.
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Old Mar 7, 2012, 10:37 AM   #19
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Nvm no need to feed trollz
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Old Mar 8, 2012, 05:52 PM   #20
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Originally Posted by caveman-jim View Post
Thanks for sharing your opinion.

I, personally, don't care what gpu or cpu you buy. I hope nvidia's offering at the same price point is worth waiting for.

I don't think that many people think the same way you do. But then, I'm purile, so what do I know, right?

Also, I hope we can go back to the 5850 launch and see your complaints about performance/$ over 4850. Surely you complained about that, then?
I never owned a 4850 so I wouldn't have complained. If you don't think the price matters in these economic times you must live on a different planet to me.

What a lot of people are saying is the card is too expensive for what it does and price is a major concern especially in today's market. All I can say is good luck to AMD to sell this card at his price point.
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Old Mar 8, 2012, 06:57 PM   #21
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I think we do live on different planets, because I did say it was priced high. You are arguing for the sake of it. It's a premium product, a luxury item. It's still going to be a success and there are reasons for the high price of the card, one of which is AMD want to make more money.

You don't like it? Vote with your wallet. Now you have the information to make that choice.
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Old Mar 11, 2012, 12:02 AM   #22
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Quote:
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Perhaps there's more to graphics cards than your blinkered, narrow view that only performance matters. It doesn't.
lol dude im not gonna date the card, im gonna play games on it, so OFCOURSE performance is the only thing that matters! how's that a narrow view?
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Old Mar 11, 2012, 12:03 PM   #23
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lol dude im not gonna date the card, im gonna play games on it, so OFCOURSE performance is the only thing that matters! how's that a narrow view?
funny you say "performance is the only thing that matters" .. when you are sporting an AMD Ph II X6 .. IF performance was the only metric you would have chosen an i7 EE on an X58 or X79 platform, and gone with GTX 480 as they delivered at their time of introduction absolutely highest performance. Or do you just now forget there are such things such as cost, power, heat, etc ?
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