AMD higher after high-end GPU launches to good reviews

AMD (AMD +2.7%) has officially launched its high-end R9 290X GPU. The first reviews for the chip, which is based on  powers graphics cards sporting an MSRP of $549, have been very positive.

Tom's Hardware has given the 290X its Elite award; it's the first time a graphics card has been granted the honor. Benchmarks show the 290X beating Nvidia's (NVDA -0.4%) costlier GeForce GTX 780 ($649) and Titan GPUs ($999), and faring very well in multi-monitor tests.

Nvidia recently discounted several cheaper cards to counter AMD's aggressive pricing for its new Hawaii GPUs (of which the 290X is the costliest/most powerful). TH: "Nvidia still does thermals, acoustics, and aesthetics better. But now it’s also charging a hefty premium for those luxuries."

AnandTech's review of the 290X is also upbeat, but its praise is a little more qualified. "Against NVIDIA’s pricing structure the 290X is by every definition a steal at $549 ... But with that said, although the 290X has a clear grip on performance and price it does come at the cost of power and cooling."

Like other Hawaii GPUs, the R290X supports AMD's Mantle API, which the chipmaker promises will deliver an unmatched level of hardware optimization.

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Comments (4)
  • Justin Jaynes
    , contributor
    Comments (3155) | Send Message
    My writeup on Mantle

    24 Oct 2013, 02:52 PM Reply Like
  • Stock Market Mike
    , contributor
    Comments (3738) | Send Message
    I wonder how many people run the numbers on what the extra power consumption costs them? Probably not many.


    Edit: I just realized this is a wall of text. For anyone wondering... ~$25/yr.


    290X vs GTX 780 - According to the AnandTech review...


    Idle power consumption is roughly +8 watts
    Load is somewhere between +48 and +78 watts - I'll use 63 watts as the average.


    I'll run two different scenarios. If your computer is powered on 24/7/365 and you game for 4 hours per day, then...


    The extra idle power consumption (20 hours per day) costs you 58.4kwh per year - in BC, Canada this would likely cost you $5.96 at a rate of 10.2 cents per kwh. In California, USA this would be 50 to 100% higher - check your bill to determine your rate.


    The extra load power consumption costs you 91.98kwh per year - in BC, Canada this would likely cost you $9.38. Once again in California it would likely be 50-100% higher.


    Most people buying these cards like to ride the bleeding edge, upgrading as new cards come out and selling their old ones. It is doubtful they would hold onto the cards much more than a year, so a the 290X would cost about $16-30 extra in power consumption over a GTX 780.


    Some buyers might go for the very best and stick with it until it dies or doesn't play new games, but I don't know if they are that common. Just multiply the dollar amount by the rough number of years it is intended to be kept.


    Now, lets take someone that has their computer powered on for 14 hours per day, games for about 8, and their computer sleeps the rest of the time.


    Idle power consumption (17.52kwh) costs an extra $1.79/yr in BC over a GTX 780.


    Load power consumption (183.96kwh) costs an extra $18.76/yr in BC.


    This more reasonable usage scenario (IMO for a teen or heavy gamer) would be about $20-40/yr in power consumption.


    I therefore conclude that the 290X would likely cost its target buyer about $25/yr in power consumption over a GTX 780. I doubt that'll stop any potential buyers - the allure of its price vs performance (both before and after Mantle) is just too much!


    24 Oct 2013, 04:17 PM Reply Like
  • Fiberton
    , contributor
    Comments (3187) | Send Message
    Anyone who allows that little power consumption to matter are idiots. I as a nerd support AMD in their more stock I shall own.
    24 Oct 2013, 06:54 PM Reply Like
  • Justin Jaynes
    , contributor
    Comments (3155) | Send Message
    There's an app for that... (power consumption)
    24 Oct 2013, 06:56 PM Reply Like
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