AMD Puts Best Foot Forward With Radeon RX 7000

AMD unveiled its upcoming Radeon RX 7000 graphics cards and RDNA 3 architecture last week. While still a step behind Nvidia’s flagship RTX 4090, AMD’s launch cards are well positioned to take high-end market share.

Pricing & Size Over Power
RDNA 3 launches Dec 13 with the $999 RX 7900XTX and $899 RX 7900XT. By staying under important pricing, power, and size cutoffs, AMD is making a compelling offer to gamers upgrading from something like an older Nvidia RTX 2080 or system integrators wanting to maintain the same assembly lines.

  • AMD is promising a vague 1.7X performance uplift & 1.8X raytracing boost compared to RX 6000 cards
  • Raytracing continues to be a weakness for AMD cards
  • Total Board Power: 355W for RX 7900XTX & 300W for RX 7900XT
  • AMD FSR 3 in 2023: AMD’s next iteration of open-source upscaling technology will be similar to Nvidia’s DLSS 3.0 and rely on frame generation
  • AV1 encoding support brings AMD in line with Intel & Nvidia’s GPUs
AMD’s two launch cards are aimed directly at Nvidia’s $1,199 RTX 4080, not the $1,599 RTX 4090. If AMD can deliver comparable performance, they’ll enter the market with a significant pricing advantage in not only sticker price, but upgrade costs.
  • AMD highlighted the smaller physical dimensions of its cards compared to Nvidia's RTX 4000s
  • For builders and system integrators, it could be the difference between using existing components or having to source entirely new ones to accommodate a bigger card
Frugal Foundations
The most exciting aspect of AMD’s new graphics cards is their paradigm shift to a chiplet design. By ditching the industry-standard monolithic design, AMD can price more aggressively due to reduced manufacturing costs. 
  • A chiplet design allows the use of older and less expensive production lines for certain components
  • RX 7000 also opted for more affordable GDDR6 memory instead of the newer GDDR6X Nvidia is using 
The Best Shot AMD’s Got
Intel’s recent crack at GPU’s was a bust performance-wise, and Nvidia isn’t even pretending to compete on price anymore. While still partly reflecting Covid GPU price increases, AMD has handily beat Nvidia on price for performance. This, along with power efficiency, was repeatedly hammered home during the announcement. If AMD is ever going to cut into Nvidia’s 80% market share in the discrete GPU market, Radeon RX 7000 is that opportunity. 
Featured image: AMD