AMD touts the high energy efficiency of Polaris GCN 4.0 architecture

Posted on Monday, Jan 04 2016 @ 14:05 CET by Thomas De Maesschalck
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Either AMD has a leak somewhere in its marketing or press circuit or the company is banging up the drum about its next-gen GPU architecture. VideoCardz got its hands on a presentation from the Radeon Technologies Group, the slides detail the upcoming Polaris (GCN 4.0) architecture. Video cards based on Polaris will be released later this year and will reportedly be made on a 14nm FinFET process, with initial availability around mid-2016.

There's a slide with a block diagram of the Polaris architecture but overall they are a bit light on details. AMD touts performance/Watt as one of the big enhancements and one of the slides claims Polaris will be able to run Star Wars: Battlefront at a Full HD resolution at 60fps while consuming 86W, whereas a card from a competitor demands 140W for the same feat.

Reading the fine print, it seems the test was performed on medium quality settings and the comparison card was NVIDIA's current-gen GeForce GTX 950, which has a lower performance/Watt ratio than NVIDIA's high-end cards. NVIDIA's future Pascal architecture also promises significantly better performance/Watt so the comparison is moot.
The GPU design was modified to include new logical blocks. What’s new is Command Processor, Geometry Processor, Multimedia Cores, Display Engine and upgraded L2 Cache and Memory Controller. Last but not least, the new architecture has 4th Generation Graphics Core Next Compute Units (aka. GCN 4.0).
AMD Polaris

AMD Polaris

AMD Polaris

AMD Polaris

AMD Polaris


About the Author

Thomas De Maesschalck

Thomas has been messing with computer since early childhood and firmly believes the Internet is the best thing since sliced bread. Enjoys playing with new tech, is fascinated by science, and passionate about financial markets. When not behind a computer, he can be found with running shoes on or lifting heavy weights in the weight room.



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