AMD Launches ATI Radeon HD Family, Finally
Anh Tuan Huynh
May 13, 2007 8:32 PM
comment(s) - last by
Sapphire ATI Radeon HD 2900 XT TOXIC
ATI Radeon HD 2400
ATI Radeon HD 2600
ATI Radeon HD 2900 XT
AMD announces its long-awaited ATI Radeon HD 2900 XT, seven months after its initial launch date
AMD is prepared to launch its
ATI Radeon HD 2000 family
tomorrow. The new ATI Radeon HD 2000 family consists of the HD 2400, HD 2600 and HD 2900 graphics processors, formerly known as
, respectively. Although AMD will announce its ATI Radeon HD 2000 series, only the ATI Radeon HD 2900 XT will have immediate availability. The accompanying
ATI Radeon HD 2400 and HD 2600
-based products are paper launches.
After months of delays,
is finally ready for consumer purchase. Only one ATI Radeon HD 2900 model will launch today in XT guise.
previously pitted the
ATI Radeon HD 2900 XT
NVIDIA’s GeForce 8800 GTS
ATI Radeon HD 2900 XTX
previously benchmarked by
will not hit retail channels, for now.
ATI Radeon HD 2900 XT
packs 320 unified stream processors with an estimated 47.5 Gigapixels/sec pixel processing rate. The 320 stream processors are joined by 16 texture units and render backends. AMD claims the 740 MHz
ATI Radeon HD 2900 XT
delivers 475 GigaFLOPS of processing power in multiply-add, or MADD, calculations.
AMD pairs the 700 million transistors GPU with 512MB of GDDR3 video memory. The 1.65 GHz GDDR3 memory communicates with the GPU via a 512-bit memory interface, delivering 106 GB/sec of bandwidth. The new ATI Radeon HD 2900 XT continues to make do with an 80nm fabrication process to consume approximately 215 watts of power altogether.
Although images have shown the ATI Radeon HD 2900 XT with dual dual-link DVI ports, the card does in fact support HDMI output. An included adapter allows users to experience high-definition video and 5.1 surround sound audio via HDMI output. Also bundled with the ATI Radeon HD 2900 XT are keys for Valve’s upcoming Half Life 2: Episode Two and Team Fortress 2. The keys allow owners to download the games, when released, over STEAM.
Taking on NVIDIA’s recently launched
GeForce 8600 family
is the new ATI Radeon HD 2600 series. AMD plans to paper launch the ATI Radeon HD 2600 in PRO and XT guises. The ATI Radeon HD 2600 series features 120 stream processors. The GPU is clocked anywhere between 600 to 800 MHz depending on flavor. AMD backs the 120 stream processors with eight texture units and four render backends.
The amount of processing power brings the ATI Radeon HD 2600 GPU transistor count to 390 million. Nevertheless, the ATI Radeon HD 2600 is manufactured on a 65nm process. AMD rates power consumption at approximately 45 watts.
AMD pairs the ATI Radeon HD 2600 GPU with
, GDDR3 or DDR2 memory. Manufacturers can equip cards with 256MB of video memory clocked anywhere between 800 MHz to 2.2 GHz, on a 128-bit memory interface. ATI Radeon HD 2600-based cards will also support HDMI audio and video output via adapter.
At the bottom of the new ATI Radeon 2000-series lineup is the ATI Radeon HD 2400 series with PRO and XT models. The new ATI Radeon HD 2400 features 40 stream processors with four texture units and render backends. GPU clocks vary between 525 MHz to 700 MHz.
The ATI Radeon HD 2400 series features less than half the transistors as the HD 2600 – 180 million. AMD has the ATI Radeon HD 2400 series manufactured on the same 65nm process as the HD 2600. Power consumption of the ATI Radeon HD 2400 hovers around 25 watts.
Add-in board manufacturers are free to equip ATI Radeon HD 2400 series graphics cards with GDDR3 or DDR2 memory. The GPU supports 128MB or 256MB memory configurations on a 64-bit memory interface. Memory clock can vary from 800 MHz to 1.6 GHz depending on model. Expect ATI Radeon HD 2400 series graphics cards to support HDMI audio and video output via a DVI to HDMI adapter.
Despite an announcement for the complete ATI Radeon HD 2000 series, the ATI Radeon HD 2900 XT will be the only card available for purchase tomorrow. The ATI Radeon HD 2600 and HD 2400 series will hit retail in late June 2007 with an accompanying benchmark NDA lift.
Expect to pay $399 for an ATI Radeon HD 2900 XT tomorrow from the usual add-in board partners including
, PowerColor and
. AMD expects to target the ATI Radeon HD 2600 series towards the $99 to $199 market segment and ATI Radeon HD 2400 series towards the less than $99 segment.
This article is over a month old, voting and posting comments is disabled
5/14/2007 6:39:38 PM
In a few short months we will have the HD 2950 XT, based on the 65nm RD650. If that's as efficient as the 65nm HD 2600 XT, it will be better than all of the 8800 cards.
Further, Crossfire benchmarks have come out very well for AMD. That suggests the R600's architecture will scale well to 4-way Crosswire (or even 8- or 16-way for professional applications). If ATi can get power consumption down to 150W--which is 3 times that of the HD 2600 XT, which is 1/3 as big and 1/3 as powerful--an HD 2950 XT Crossfire setup will be feasible, and will be better than two 8800 Ultras.
The question is how well NVidia has come along in the race to 65nm. If they've got a 65nm 8900 GTX in the pipe, that could potentially trump the HD 2950 XT.
A further benefit of AMD's architecture is that it is more suited to general-purpose computing (such as physics, folding @ home, etc.). That's not good enough to make the HD 2900 XT worth buying, but the 65nm version should be awesome, assuming AMD can pull it off.
I don't get all the gloom and doom. We knew the 80nm R600 parts were really hot, and as a result they would be slower than the NVidia models. The question is whether AMD has a version of R600 that is 65nm, and if so, how close is that to being released?
Funny thing, the fear among AMD fanboys a month ago was that they wouldn't be able to tell which R600 cards were 80nm (hot and slow) and which were 65nm (cool and fast) and they would get stuck buying the wrong one. Now the fear is that AMD doesn't even have a high-end 65nm card at all.
"It looks like the iPhone 4 might be their Vista, and I'm okay with that." -- Microsoft COO Kevin Turner
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