AMD Radeon R9-290 and 290X preview

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Introduction

An AMD Radeon R9-290 and R9-290X intrduction

In this article we preview the Radeon R9 series 290. The two hotty products being announced today have been long awaited and anticipated. The two cards released are the Radeon R9-290 and Radeon R9-290X, they will compete with Nvidia's finest in both performance and price levels. These cards are little beasts. As such this in-depth review will cover the Volcanic Islands GPU architecture, Hawaii for the 290 series.

Now before we begin with the new graphics cards the first thing that you guys will need to get used to is the new naming schema. AMD ended with the Radeon HD 7000 and 8000 series graphics cards in 2013. Logic dictates that AMD would have continued with a series 9000. But hey now, we already have had the Radeon 9000 series many years ago (2003), oh and who doesn't remember the Radeon 9800 Pro right? As such it was time to bring in a new naming scheme, a bit more in line with AMD's APUs. R9 will be high-end and R7 will be mainstream and inevitably R5 being entry level. After that you'll notice products being tagged as 250, 260X, 270X, 280X and the coolest two of them all are the Radeon R9 290 and R290X.

This preview will cover the Radeon R9 290 and 290X. Two products based on the new Hawaii GPU. The products will get impressive clock frequencies and, much like NVIDIA, boost power, voltage, fan and load limiters.  The two R9 290 cards with that new silicon come with a truckload of new features like integrated DSPs offering TrueAudio technology.

Some keywords as a small appetizer, 6 Billion transistors on a 438 mm2 Die, 512-bit Memory bus with 4 GB - 5.0 Gbps GDDR5 meory, Ultra HD ready, 5.6 TFLOPS of compute performance.

AMD is partnering with EA's Battlefield 4, meaning that for as long as the coupons are available, you will receive Battlefield 4 with the card. That would be a deluxe edition with extra DLC and weapons. AMD also is focusing strongly at gaming in Ultra High Definition (UHD), so this will be a focus in our review as well. Will we be able to play the hottest games at that whopping 8.2 Mpixels at a 3840x2160 resolution @ 60 Hz. So yeah dude, head over to the next page where we'll start-up the technology overview first, but not before you have seen at least one of the cards though.

Note - This article is a preview, unfortunately due to multiple press-events and AMD being inapt to deliver the R9 290 card on time, the final and full in-depth review with performance scores will be launched a few days from now.

 

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