AMD Navi 23 ‘RDNA 2’ GPU Spotted, Could Power Mainstream Radeon RX Graphics Cards With HW-Accelerated Ray Tracing


AMD's Radeon RX graphics cards based on the RDNA 2 GPU architecture are coming and so far, all eyes have been set on the 'Big Navi' GPU which will be launching later this year to compete against NVIDIA's flagship Ampere Gaming graphics cards. But it looks like we should switch gears for this particular topic and take a look at the mainstream RDNA 2 GPUs too.

AMD Navi 23 'RDNA 2' GPU Spotted - Most Likely To Power Mainstream Radeon RX Graphics Cards

The latest findings come from Rogame who has confirmed the GPU ID for the Navi 23 chip. As per the findings, the Navi 23 GPU will have the GFX1032 ID for its graphics architecture. In fact, majority of the Navi 2X family will feature the GFX103* IDs which were originally found by Komachi and are as listed below:

AMD Computex 2022 ‘High-Performance Computing’ By CEO, Dr. Lisa Su, To Feature Next-Generation Desktop & Mobile PC Innovations

  • Navi 21 - GFX1030
  • Navi 22 - GFX1031
  • Navi 23 - GFX1032
  • Van Gogh - GFX1033

Videocardz has an excellent table for majority of Navi GPUs which can be seen below:

Graphics Architecture GPU Codename Alternative Name Architecture Product
GFX900 VEGA 10 GCN 5.0 RX VEGA / Radeon Pro
GFX902 RAVEN Raven Ridge / Picasso GCN 5.0 Ryzen 2000/3000(G/GE)
GFX904 VEGA 12 GCN 5.0 Vega Pro 20 (MAC)
GFX906 VEGA 20 GCN 5.0 Radeon VII / Radeon Pro VII
GFX909 RENOIR GCN 5.0 Ryzen 4000(H/U/G)
GFX1010 NAVI 10 RDNA 1 RX 5700/5600(M/XT)
GFX1011 NAVI 12 RDNA 1 PRO 5600M (MAC)
GFX1012 NAVI 14 RDNA 1 RX 5500 (M/XT)
GFX1030 NAVI 21 Big Navi / Sienna Cichlid RDNA 2 RX 6900(XT) TBC
GFX1031 NAVI 22 RDNA 2 PRO 6600M (MAC) TBC
GFX1032 NAVI 23 RDNA 2 RX 6500 (M/XT) TBC
GFX1033 VAN GOGH RDNA 2 Ryzen 5000G TBC

The AMD Navi 21 GPU is the Big Navi chip which will be used in ultra-enthusiast Radeon RX cards. It will also be the first Navi 2X GPU available to consumers, even before the arrival of next-generation consoles. Based on its name alone, it is highly likely that Navi 21 was the first Navi 2X graphics chip to be produced unless a Navi 20 GPU exists too but there have so far been no reports on such chip.

When AMD started its new GPU branding with Polaris, they confirmed that the numbers that follow the chip name don't necessarily indicate the performance tier of the GPU but rather the time it was produced. For example, Polaris 10 was the first Polaris chip to be introduced followed by Polaris 11. Polaris 10 was the bigger and faster chip whereas Polaris 11 was an entry-level design.

We can't say for sure if AMD is still following the same branding criteria for Navi 2X chips since the older scheme was part of Raja Koduri's philosophy when he formed the original RTG team. Raja Koduri has since jumped shipped to Intel and David Wang currently leads the Radeon Technologies Group and is the mastermind behind the Navi 2X lineup.

AMD Radeon & NVIDIA GeForce Graphics Card Price Update: RX 6000 Series at 5% Over MSRP, RTX 30 Series at 24% Over MSRP

So once again, if we are to say that Navi 22 would replace Navi 12, yes it will make sense since just like Navi 10 and Navi 21, it will be a smaller chip than the flagship part but Navi 12 has been kept as an exclusive for the update Macbook Pro featuring the Radeon Pro 5600M graphics chip. The same chip is the only Navi GPU in existence to feature HBM2 memory.

From what I can tell, the Navi 23 GPU might be the mainstream replacement for the Navi 2X family, succeeding the Radeon RX 5500/5600 series. Since reports suggest that Big Navi 'Navi 21' GPU will be the first RDNA 2 chip launching in the gaming market, it is likely that a Navi 10 refresh could keep things interesting in mainstream segment until AMD launches its RDNA 2 mainstream lineup with the Navi 22 and Navi 23 GPUs. We can definitely expect much lower price points than existing Radeon RX 5000 series cards for the refreshed parts so the added performance would be a bonus. The expected die sizes of these three GPUs are also listed below:

  • AMD Navi 21 (505mm2)
  • AMD Navi 22 (340mm2)
  • AMD Navi 23 (240mm2)

You can tell by the die size alone that Navi 23 is expected to be almost as big as the Navi 10 GPU which measures at 251mm2. Again, we haven't seen how hw-accelerated ray tracing blocks affect the overall die size of AMD GPUs. NVIDIA's RTX GPUs saw a slight increase in logic area of around 20-25% on average with the added RT cores. This might explain why even the smaller GPUs are so large compared to current-generation offerings. Or the other possibility is AMD just going for the brute force route and increasing the number of SMs by a huge factor.

Rumors have also suggested that both NVIDIA and AMD are planning their next-generation and flagship gaming graphics cards to hit streets by September 2020.  So it looks like AMD's RDNA 2 GPUs would compete against whatever is NVIDIA's next-generation GPU inventory. Q3 and Q4 2020 would definitely be interesting times for all the hardware enthusiasts and mainstream PC gamers who are looking forward to upgrading their PCs with the best hardware.

What do you want to see in AMD's next-gen RDNA 2 GPUs?