Image: AMD

Enthusiasts who plan to upgrade to AMD’s flagship Radeon RX 7000 Series graphics cards should definitely prepare themselves for increased levels of power consumption. Speaking in a recent interview with Tom’s Hardware, Sam Naffziger, AMD’s Senior Vice President, Corporate Fellow, and Product Technology Architect, confirmed that the power demands of red team’s next-generation GPUs are set to increase, a potential upset to those who thought RDNA 3’s advancements in efficiency might lead to graphics cards with TBPs that are more consistent with the current generation. This is very necessary for maximizing performance, Naffziger explains, before going on to suggest that NVIDIA’s graphics cards will need to draw much greater power in order to reach the same targets. The latest rumors claim that the GeForce RTX 4090 will carry a 490-watt TBP.

β€œIt’s really the fundamentals of physics that are driving this,” Naffziger said. “The demand for gaming and compute performance is, if anything, just accelerating, and at the same time, the underlying process technology is slowing down pretty dramatically β€” and the improvement rate. So the power levels are just going to keep going up. Now, we’ve got a multi-year roadmap of very significant efficiency improvements to offset that curve, but the trend is there.”

“Performance is king, but even if our designs are more power-efficient, that doesn’t mean you don’t push power levels up if the competition is doing the same thing,” he added. “It’s just that they’ll have to push them a lot higher than we will.”

AMD claims a 50% improvement in performance per watt for both RDNA and RDNA 2, and that it’s targeting another 50% improvement in performance per watt with RDNA 3. That can mean a lot of different things: 50% more performance at the same power, the same performance while using 33% less power, or somewhere else along the performance and power curve. Also note that, like Nvidia and Intel, AMD only needs to have one particular scenario where it can say performance per watt improved by 50% to claim such gains.

Source: Tom’s Hardware

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2 comments

  1. I mean it makes sense to a degree. They gotta keep up with the joneses. If they can increase the power envelope but not as MUCH as Nvidia yet that increase gives them better performance then it's a win/win.

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