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Hardware AMD Radeon R9 290X 4GB Review

Discussion in 'Article Discussion' started by Meanmotion, 24 Oct 2013.

  1. Dave Lister

    Dave Lister Member

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    It seems like they have just taken the top end single gpu card from the 7000 series and pumped more electric in to it, and that's where the extra performance is coming from ! Seriously were the engineer guys away on holiday for the last 18 months ??

    For me anyway this is very disappointing, I'd hoped for something much better to inject the market with a real performer and create some proper competition. I mean Nvidia's reworked 780 will probably take the crown back for fastest single GPU card in a few weeks putting AMD right back to second place again.
     
  2. fingerbob69

    fingerbob69 Member

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  3. t5kcannon

    t5kcannon Member

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    Yes excellent price/performance, but heat is the one issue. Be interesting to see what coolers gainward/msi and the rest come up with, and what temperatures result.
     
  4. GuilleAcoustic

    GuilleAcoustic Ook ? Ook !

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    Many ITX case accepts 10/11" long cards ...

    And .... being an enthousiast doesn't mean you have to use 1000+ W PSU. 500W is enough power to use an i7 + ssd + GTX780. Why would you throw money at a 800W PSU when your rig consumes only 350 / 400W ? Not to mention that PSU efficiency depends on it's charge. Some are less efficient when charge is over 75%, some are less efficient when charge is below 30% some are more efficient around 50% .... you have to be well aware of you RIG overall consumption and the targeted PSU load efficiency when you when a PSU.

    Talk for yourself, not everyone here think or like the same thing than you.

    I'm after the best possible performance inside the smallest possible box (or wathever it's shapped) and if it can run passively it's heavenly great. Drawing 100W from the wall and not being watercooled doesn't make me less on an enthousiast than you.

    Edit: I have great hope for AMD, they introduced lots of the great technology used nowaday ... but this card is somewhat disapointing. I'm still waiting for Kaveri for my rig "upgrade" since my HD5870 died (months ago). I have great hope in hUMA / HSA and I want to support them. And since Kaveri IGP is based on GCN, it will have Mantle. THIS is really new cool tech ... sorry AMD, but this 290X is impressive on the Price/Perf aspect but it's a fail on the perf per watt aspect.
     
    Last edited: 24 Oct 2013
  5. Corky42

    Corky42 Where's walle?

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    :rolleyes: didn't take long for the insults to start flying :thumb:
     
  6. xaser04

    xaser04 Ba Ba Ba BANANA!

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    The key point around the power draw and how hot the GPU is "designed" to run at is how it will function after a prolonged period gaming (you know the hours spent playing BF4 online). Will it carry on at Titan like performance or, will it start to throttle back? This is something that the typical 60 second or even 5-10 minute benchmarks the different sites are using doesn't tell us.

    Take for example the GTX780m in my laptop. Before a re-paste it used to hit its boost threshold temperature of 93 degree and start down clocking. This would carry on until the temperature plateaued at below the threshold. In the end it went from a 849Mhz boost clock to just ~700Mhz, this of course was coupled with a corresponding drop in performance.

    After a prolonged gaming session will we see the same behaviour from the 290x?
     
  7. Dogbert666

    Dogbert666 *Fewer Staff Administrator

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    There's an entirely new GPU here... And while I don't disagree that the stage is set for the 780 Ti to reclaim the (second) best single GPU spot, having the best card isn't the same as having the best bang for buck. The 290X has entered the market with a lower price and more performance than the 780. Is it a perfect card? No. But if that's not creating competition then I don't know what is.


    The heat generated is certainly an issue, and I'm also very interested to see third party cooling solutions. But the issue isn't as simple as what temperatures they'll run at. As the article explains more fully, the 290X WILL run at the temperature you tell it to, which is 95°C by default. By our results, the GTX 780 runs 12°C cooler, so a more interesting comparison will be whether third party coolers will allow you to maintain a more common 80-85°C temperature without a) getting too noisy and b) dropping clock speeds and thus the performance advantage that 290X has.

    Finally, with regards to power, as I said in the article it's impossible to credit the 290X for efficiency given the difference between its power consumption and that of GTX 780. But in practical terms I do wonder if people are getting too caught up on it. An 82W difference is a 0.082kWh difference. Using the Energy Savings Trust's average price of electricity at standard rate in the UK of 15.32p per kWh, you're effectively saving 1.26p for every hour spent under heavy load. It would therefore take around 4,000 hours of heavy workloads to negate a £50 saving in buying the 290X, for example. Obviously it would be better were the card not so hungry, and obviously this is very rough maths and there's more to consider beyond the wallet impact of energy savings. But still, food for thought :)
     
  8. AlienwareAndy

    AlienwareAndy New Member

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    Whilst it may be safe for the card it's unacceptable to me to live with. Benching and general tinkering? yeah. 5 hour Metro Last Light session with a bloody dust buster next to me firing out scolding hot air?

    No thanks.

    I do accept the technical merits of this card. It's one hell of a performer and the price for a launch card (£450 on OCUK) is bloody fantastic. It's just not acceptable in this day and age to reach 95c.

    Once the custom coolers come along? it's pretty much bugger off Nvidia with your brain dead monkey who sorts out your pricing.

    And I wouldn't buy Nvidia now with DICE confirming that Mantle is coming and would work with ANY Frostbite game (so it seems it'll work on already released games like BF3 and Mirror's Edge etc).

    That excites me enough to dismiss Nvidia almost completely.
     
  9. AlienwareAndy

    AlienwareAndy New Member

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    Oh and FWIW I could very easily cancel my 7990 due to the delay and get a 290x. But I won't, because even the dual GPU nuclear power plant I just ordered runs 20c cooler and makes hardly any noise doing it.
     
  10. fingerbob69

    fingerbob69 Member

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    You're asking me guess the reletive quality of thermal paste used by AMD and their AIB's compared to that which you found in a lap-top!?
     
  11. rollo

    rollo Well-Known Member

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    Power it consumes is nigh on irelivent.( The fact you can get 2 680s in sli to consume less electric under load and perform better acording to anandtechs review is something id wonder about though) To the heat it generates and the noise the cooler makes under load. If you think 68db is acceptable ( thats what anandtech has it at ) then you must live alone as it would not be suitable in your average household.

    95c is also hot and people who have water cooled 480s in sli have mensioned how hot it made there rigs. Can you imagine doing the same thing again. I would not be intrested in such a thing and personally dout alot of others will.

    Also remember 95c is best case scenario in open air test bench after 5-10mins of load. Play bf3 or 4 for 5-6 hrs at 95c and I dont think you would be wanting this card anymore. Thats not to mension the Load db which is using the fan profile that AMD wants, that fan profile would surely colapse in a normal house hold on a hot day.

    Anandtech actually had problems getting all the games to run at its max rated default settings due to temp using the stock cooler on an open test bench. It was downclocking in there own review after at most a few hrs of usage. What would happen after 3-4months of dust and 4-6hrs a day of constant gaming is another matter.

    Top end cards like this sell in the 2-3k mark with the lower range where the sales really are.

    Its a nice card at a nice price, But assuming its for everyone is a bit nuts. Even though it outperforms the 780 many people would choose the 780 just because its quiter and produces less heat under load. AMDs history with drivers also does not help it much.

    Personally not sure why you would not buy the 7990 on scan if your buying a card today.
     
  12. The_Crapman

    The_Crapman Don't phone it's just for fun.

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    And you're asking people to forget about the temps when your sig tells us all that you've replaced your gpu's hsf with a 3rd party solution...
     
  13. SchizoFrog

    SchizoFrog New Member

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    The thing that baffles me is that AMD's APU direction is all about efficiency and yet when they make a GPU they just seem to throw power at it in a Jeremy Clarkson fashion.

    It also has to be said that the Titan style coolers found on stock 780's is an absolute thing of beauty and look very professional while AMD's coolers look cheap, tacky and childish in comparison. All subjective I know but that is my opinion.
     
  14. Cei

    Cei pew pew pew

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    Thing is, you can get your panties in a wad about 95C, or managing to drop that to 85C with custom coolers until the cows comes home. The point is you're still trying to take that amount of heat away from the GPU and dump it in the case/room the case is in. A 290X under water is still going to chuck out the same amount of heat as one under air - it's just one is better at shifting that heat off the GPU itself.

    I don't want a PC that actively works as a heating element in my room. Sure, it might be nice in winter, but during the summer I actively avoid this kind of thing. It was the same with 480s - you could feel the heat literally swimming out of the case fans. Fancy a long gaming session? With that kind of temperature you'll be sweating after a few hours, or running out to by expensive air conditioners.

    AMD have got the price and performance to an excellent point, and one which is finally going to kick NVIDIA up their complacent arses to reduce prices on the 780 and maybe Titan. But it's by releasing a card that runs like an oven.
     
  15. Harlequin

    Harlequin Well-Known Member

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    now your just trying to justify your own purchase.

    both the 7990 (and that offer Is amazing) and the 290x are great cards , and ive owned both the original `dustbuster` the 5800 Ultra and the GTX 480 - yes the put out heat , and with the 5800 , a lot of noise. but its the bleeding edge - you want cheap and quiet to run - go get a mid range one.


    but Dogbert has hit the nail on the head with regards to power cost - 4000 hours at full load for the power to reach the difference in purchase cost.... (that's 166 2/3 rd days at max load.... so about 5 years in the real world of useage)
     
  16. Harlequin

    Harlequin Well-Known Member

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    you owned a GTX 480 therefore you arguments about heat are moot.
     
  17. Cei

    Cei pew pew pew

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    Sorry, I didn't. I knew people who did though. I refused to touch that first generation of Fermi with a bargepole.
     
  18. Harlequin

    Harlequin Well-Known Member

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    I honestly thought you did?? my bad then - but , as someone said elsewhere - both red and green team are at the limit for 28nm - green team are making dies the size of a small country and red have stuffed volts through. neither can go much further without a node shrink.
     
  19. Cei

    Cei pew pew pew

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    Oh totally agreed - we need to drop to 22nm already. I think NV's approach has been more successful, but seems to be leading to lower yields due to the sheer die sizes (hence the limited chips using GK110). A new architecture from both sides should hopefully bring better performance down the range as well, rather than endless rebadges of the same GPUs with ridiculously small tweaks.

    My history with GPUs has been all over the place. Probably something like:
    GeForce2 GTS, GeForce FX 5600, 9800 Pro, X800, X1600, 8800GT, 4870, 5870, GTX 275, GT 120, 9400M/320M, 560Ti, 580, HD 3000, HD 4000/650M, 680, 780, HD4500.
     
  20. GuilleAcoustic

    GuilleAcoustic Ook ? Ook !

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    The point about power consumption is not only "Saving a few buck on the power bill". It can be a philosophy, like "A little gift for the planet", or a will to lower temp, or just because you do not see the point of changing you beloved PSU just because your GPU consumes too much. 500W PSU comes in a short package (mine is modular and has a 140mm depth ... try to find a 800W modular short PSU).

    344W (system with GTX780) to 426W (system with R290X) is a 30% increase in global power consumption ... but the performance increase is well below 30%

    My GPU history: ATI 3D rage 2+, 3DFX Voodoo2, nvidia TNT2 M64, gefroce 2MX, geforce 4Ti 4200, geforce 9600GT, ATI HD5870 (rip), geforce 9300 (igp) .... yes, I keep my hardware til its last breath :D
     
    Last edited: 24 Oct 2013
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