If you are a regular reader of tech news then you might wonder what is up with this news piece since the 8GB R9 290X version from SAPPHIRE already exists. Well, allow me to explain, AMD has now decided to allow some more AIBs to introduce 8GB versions without significantly increasing the price. This is in an effort to compete with the GTX 980 flagship that was recently released. (Source: Sweclockers via Videocardz)
PowerColor and Club3D AMD exclusive AIBs granted permission to launch 8GB Radeon R9 290X
The two AIBs that have now been granted permission by AMD are Power Color and Club3d (both subsidiaries of TUL Corp.) As you already know two variants of the 290x, namely the Sapphire Radeon R9 290X Vapor and Toxic, are already out there; but in an effort to increase margins and combat the newly discovered threat of the Maxwells, AMD has decided to allow 8GB variants for the holiday season. These new GPUs by Club3D and Power Color would be perfect to install in Crossfire considering the large amount of vRAM. A Dual R9 290X 8GB Solution should be affordable and able to handle most games at 4k, while offering pretty decent scaling.
The heart of the card will ofcourse be the Hawaii core containing 2816 stream processors, 176 texture units, 64 raster operations pipelines and an absolutely huge 512-bit memory bus. Trust me when I say this, this chip is engineered to handle huge resolutions. It is worth mentioning that the Sapphire variants had increased core clock and memory clock so you can expect the new variants to have the same. In fact, I am slightly partial to the Club3D brand because their GPUs tend to overclock like crazy. I have seen some units overclock +300Mhz without breaking a sweat (on stock cooler).
The cards are going to come in November with AMD supported by its two key partners, Sapphire and TUL Corp. (the main holding of Power Color and Club 3D). However, all that said, this is slightly worrisome news. Because if increasing the memory is all that AMD has planned for the holiday season, then it appears to not be launching any new GPU this year. Although to be honest, that was kinda expected after their earnings call where they mentioned that the flagships would be landing next year.