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Thursday, 19 September 2013 07:58

Hawaii GPU spec leaked, sort of

Written by Peter Scott

Big grain o’ salt advised

AMD is set to introduce Hawaii next week and apart from a few small leaks, it has managed to keep the new GPU under wraps so far. We do not know the exact spec at this point, which is quite unusual just a week from launch. Usually someone slips up or intentionally leaks much of the spec weeks ahead of launch.

3Dcenter has compiled much of the leaked information leaked so far, as well as fresh info from what it describes as a well informed source. However, the resulting spec sheet is still not complete.

We are looking at roughly a 430mm2 chip, some 18 percent bigger than Tahiti. This corresponds with AMD’s official claim that Hawaii is about 15 percent bigger than its predecessor and 30 percent smaller than the GK110. The GPU includes 2.0 GCN architecture, while Tahiti was a 1.0 GCN part. It has four raster engines, twice as many as Tahiti.

However, the shader count and clocks are not pinned down yet. The GPU is expected to feature up to 2816 in 44 clusters, 37 percent more than Tahiti and more than Nvidia’s GTX 780, although comparing AMD and Nvidia shader counts is a case of apples and oranges. However, 3Dcenter does not have the exact number and it could be anywhere between 2560 and 2816.

The card is said to have a 384-bit memory bus and we would expect nothing less, or more for that matter.

As previous leaks indicate, the branding is new, too - R9-290 (Hawaii Pro) and Radeon R9-290X for the XT version.

There is simply too much speculation out there to come up with any assessment based on what we know so far. And since there’s still no word on clocks or the exact shader count, any estimate could be wide of the goal. Best case scenario, according to 3Dcenter – it comes close to Nvidia’s Titan Ultra, but even in the more pessimistic scenario it should be able to outpace the GTX 780.

This is too much speculation for a Thursday morning. We could never get the hang of Thursdays. Based on what we’ve got so far, we don’t have a better estimate, but like we said - it will be very close indeed.

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