Yup that's right. Latest reports from the Silicon Valley suggest that ATi would be launching its first DirectX 11 based graphic processors during the first or second week of September. And that too, at a private launch event at a secret location.
What market segment would the first batch of GPUs target? Well quite surprisingly, the rumors suggest that the Radeon HD 5000 lineup would be targeting every market segment at launch. The R800 GPUs (codenamed Evergreen) would be available in the following categories:
- Hemlock (5400): Entry Level GPUs
- Cedar (5500): Mainstream GPUs
- Redwood (5600): Mainstream GPUs
- Juniper (5700): Performance GPUs
- Cypress (5800): Enthusiast GPUs
The price range would also cover the entire spectrum from $50 to around $300 price tags found on the usual ATi lineups. All the GPUs would be DirectX 11 and OpenGL 3.1 compatible, so that would mean they all will be carrying the same feature set. The difference would come in the underlying processor architecture, the number of stream processors, the amount and type of VRAM and of course the clock speeds.
Nevertheless, this lineup would produce a big pressure on the rival GPU maker NVIDIA and also on Intel who also plans to enter this market segment sometime around next year. We can safely assume that NVIDIA's own lineup would be coming somewhere around October to meet the DirectX 11 launch, as there would be at least 7 Dx11 based games launching around the holiday season.
Expect the GPUs to be available in our local stores around October, at a ridiculously high price, like the new Radeon HD 4770 which retails for Rs. 14,000 instead of something around Rs. 10,000 - 11,000.