AMD’s HBM Fiji GPU Is Made In Korea, But Not By Samsung
Fiji, AMD's first GPU featuring HBM powering the R9 Fury X flagship graphics card was demonstrated at E3 bearing a "Made in Korea" marking. AMD introduced a number of high-end Radeon graphics cards based on its brand new Fiji GP. Including the Radeon R9 Fury X, which AMD has proclaimed to be the fastest single-GPU card in the world, as well as the R9 Fury, R9 Nano and R9 Fury X2 which is the fastest graphics card in the world with 17 TFLOPS of computing power. Fiji is the first graphics chip in the industry to feature stacked memory technology. This chip is also the very first to be made in Korea but more interestingly that "Made in Korea" marking has nothing to do with Samsung.
The chip pictured above is what we're referring to, and the "Made in Korea" etching is clearly visible on the left side of the package. We should explain first what you're looking it, the large chip in the middle is the Fiji GPU die, the four smaller chips surrounding it are the High Bandwidth Memory stacks. The GPU die itself is not made in Korea and is either manufactured by TSMC or Globalfoundries, we've yet to confirm. The entire package however, including the the HBM stacks are what would be assembled in Korea, by SK Hynix. The supplier of the High Bandwidth Memory technology.
AMD's HBM Fiji GPU Is Made In Korea, But Not By Samsung
I have to admit, it feels quite strange to realize that the first ever AMD chip to carry the "Made in Korea" tag actually has nothing to do with the Korean giant Samsung. But is rather the result of AMD's memory supplier SK Hynix. It feels even stranger that the memory supplier would put its stamp on the chip, that is until you dig a little bit deeper.
What's actually happening behind the curtain is that AMD would send each known good Fiji die, i.e. fully functional Fiji chip, to SK Hynix. Who would then proceed to add the stacked memory modules, assemble the package and ship it back. This would ensure that every single Fiji + HBM package that AMD receives would have fully functional memory chips.
Samsung on the other hand may have a much bigger role in AMD's product line next year. With the introduction of next generation FinFET Arctic Islands graphics chips as well as AMD's brand new high performance Zen CPU core. The company officially announced that both of these products will be based on FinFET. However, both TSMC and the Globalfoundries/Samsung alliance have access to this technology. But AMD's keeping its cards very close to its chest and so far has not revealed any information with regards to which supplier would be making what.
For more about Fiji and the range of Radeon products which are based on it you can check out our Fury X, Fury and Nano debut article here as well as our coverage of the dual Fiji Fury X2 here and the Fury X board and cooling design here. As always stay tuned for the latest and share your thoughts in a comment below.