AMD has announced its next generation of graphics cards, the RX 7900 XTX and RX 7900 XT, which are the first cards powered by its new architecture, RDNA 3, which uses a chiplet design similar to the company’s Ryzen processors. So far, AMD hasn’t announced details like pricing and how fast it’ll be in games, but we’re keeping our eyes on its announcement livestream for that and will be fleshing out this post as we get that info. Here’s what the company’s announced so far.
The RX 7900 XTX is AMD’s flagship card with 24GB of memory, where the 7900 XT is a slightly lower-end version with 20GB of memory. We’ll likely get more details about how they compare later on in the stream.
According to AMD, RDNA 3 is the first time a chiplet architecture (where a chip’s multiple parts are broken up and talk to each other via an ultrafast interface) has been used in a gaming GPU, and it says it decided to go with the design so it can use “the right process technology for the right job.” Basically, it means it can use cutting-edge 5nm tech for its graphics processing while relying on more “mature” 6nm chips for memory caching, instead of having to use the fancy stuff for everything. AMD previously made waves with its chiplet-based Ryzen processors, and companies like Intel, TSMC, Samsung, ARM, and Qualcomm have all at least started looking into the concept.
The chips can talk to each other extremely fast, at around 5.3TB/s. For reference, Apple’s M1 Ultra inter-processor connection that connects two CPUs and GPUs runs at what was widely considered a blazing-fast 2.5TB/s.
The company’s promising a lot with RDNA 3: up to a 54 percent jump in performance-per-watt compared to RDNA 2, which used a more traditional GPU design. AMD says it’s capable of producing up to 61 TFLOPs, compared to RDNA 2’s 23 TFLOPs, though it’s worth noting that these numbers aren’t always comparable when you’re talking about different architectures. It also means that we probably won’t be able to use just the numbers to directly compare consoles like the PS5, Xbox Series, and Steam Deck, which use RDNA 2, to the company’s new PC GPUs.
Interestingly, AMD has opted for DisplayPort 2.1 support on both the RX 7900 XTX and RX 7900. That means higher refresh rate support at 4K and 8K, compared to the old DisplayPort 1.4 port that Nvidia is using on its latest RTX 40-series cards. And just like Nvidia, AMD has simultaneous encode or decode for AV1, something that creators will be interested in.