I have just received word that the answer to the #2betterthan1 campaign will be provided in the first 10 days of April. Another source has placed the date to be the 8th of April. The #2betterthan1 viral campaign has been running for the past month and consisted of everything from Dual Pringle Cans and a Hawaii Volcanic water to cryptic messages and now it seems the answer will be here soon enough; if my source is to be believed the 8th of April.
AMD's Dual GPU Flagship "Vesuvius" R9 295X2 or a Dual Hawaii GPU FirePro card is coming 8th April
Now the clues in these messages were painfully obvious. The two Pringle cans representing a Dual GPU card and the Hawain Water Battle, the hybrid air and water cooling system all reference cards are going to ship with. Unless I am mistaken, this is the first time that reference cards will ship with a water cooling system by default. And you can't really be surprised. When we broke the news of Vesuvius "R9 295X2" in the English Web-o-sphere all those months back, we joked about how much heat it would produce and AMD's ironic codename of a volcano. Well the hybrid cooling solution pretty much solves that.
The cooler would be Hybrid which means it will involve both air and liquid cooling. This is a same implementation as ASUS which have released several cards over the last year adopting this design such as the ROG ARES II, ROG GTX 770 Poseidon and ROG GTX 780 Poseidon. The cooler may involve an independent Closed Loop All-In-One liquid cooler with an 120mm radiator that can be attached within a CPU case. The 120mm radiator would be equipped with single, dual or triple 120mm PWM controlled fans. This design will effectively help to keep the temperatures of the Radeon R9 295X2 in check. As for the power consumption, we are looking at a 375W or more for the card considering just how hungry the Hawaii GPU gets.
AMD Radeon R9 295X2 Dual Hawaii Graphics Card Comparison Chart:
|Radeon HD 6990||Radeon HD 7990||Radeon R9 295X2|
|GPU Codename||Antilles||New Zealand||Vesuvius|
|GPU Cores||3200 SPs||4096 SPs||5632 SPs|
|Memory||2 GB GDDR5 x 2||3 GB GDDR5 x 2||4 GB GDDR5 x 2|
|Memory Bus||256-bit x 2||384-bit x 2||512-bit x 2|
|Cooling||Dual Slot Single Fan (Blower Type)||Dual Slot Triple Fan||Dual Slot Hybrid Cooler|
|Power Connectors||8+8 Pin||8+8 Pin||8+8 Pin|
|Price||$699 US||$999 US||~$1499 US*|
*Details mentioned are not indicative of the final product!
It will be interesting to see how the card fares up against NVIDIA's recently announced GeForce GTX Titan Z which features two GK110 cores but has a premium price point of $2999 US. The Dual-Chip Hawaii GPU will become a enthusiast offering from the company due to the Hybrid cooling implementation so we will see an higher price of around $1499 as compared to $999 on AMD's last dual-chip card (Radeon HD 7990). The new Radeon R9 295X2 seems interesting but design wise, the props goes to NVIDIA due to a better cooler design. Since it features a hybrid cooler, alot of space would be occupied by the Radiator unit itself but at the end of the day, the card would be aimed towards enthusiasts with humongous chassis, enough to fit two of these cards. Rumors pointing at a second GK110 card have started to float across the web hinting at a lower cost Dual GK110 GPU variant which will be aimed towards gamers. This new card which is being called the GeForce GTX 790 is said to launch around April and will feature cut down GK110 cores though this isn't confirmed yet.
Now of course, we are operating primarily on leaks and our own sources, so while we knew that a Dual-GPU card was coming since November, we are only about 90% sure that it is Vesuvius. The remaining 10% of probability might see itself presented in a Dual GPU replacement for the aged S10000 Dual GPU FirePro card, with Hawaii cores. Ofcourse AMD, might decide to play with the nomenclature a little and not go with the R9 295X2 naming but we feel that falls into the 90%. But either ways, the answer to these questions is coming very soon, quite probably the 8th of Next Month as mentioned earlier. Ladies and gentlemen, April is coming, and Vesuvius erupts.
— Usman Pirzada (@usmanpirzada) March 28, 2014