Rumor: AMD Radeon 5950 XT ‘Big Navi’ NVIDIA Killer Will Have 80 CUs

A featured image of the upcoming AMD 'Big' Navi GPU.
A featured image of the upcoming AMD 'Big' Navi GPU. Background image credits.

The latest from the rumor mill is just in: AMD's flagship 'big Navi' part, probably the RX 5950 XT graphics card, will have 80 CUs. This is the GPU that is purported to be an NVIDIA killer and will put AMD back on the map for high-end graphics. Keep in mind this post is as rumor as rumor gets so keep those salt shakers handy! 80 CUs will translate to 5120 Stream Processors if AMD maintains the 64 SP to 1 CU ratio and the architecture is thought to be based on RDNA2.

AMD's big Navi, NVIDIA killer based on RDNA2 will have 80 CUs, capable of 17.5 TFLOPs of compute at 1700 MHz

This particular rumor stems from Chiphell, which has proven to be a whimsical source of information in the post - albeit with a fairly high rate of success. We have seen AMD's new Navi family pop on EEC filings so it is clear that the company is preparing to launch a new lineup - and the only question that remains is about the specifications. While 80 CUs is something that is very much plausible, it is unclear at this point whether this rumor is authentic.

A forum post on chiphell alleging the big Navi graphics card will ship with 80 CUs.

Since the card has more than 40 CUs, it is clear that the architecture in question is RDNA and according to the source, this is RNDA2 - which means native support for hardware based raytracing. AMD has already pledged support for this cause and I think we will be seeing this pop up in their next generation of graphics cards. Keep in mind we are not sure  at this point whether this 80CU card is the RX 5950 or the 5800 or any of the other variants mentioned in the EEC filing but I would hazard a guess that this is indeed the flagship (unless AMD wants to revive the trend of dual GPU based graphics cards).

80 CUs translate to 5120 stream processors (assuming the same ratio as GCN) and if AMD is able to run these at a minimum of 1700 MHz, you are looking at an astounding 17.5 TFLOPs of power. Considering this is 7nm, AMD should easily be able to hit that (unless they run into TBP constraints) although you are still looking at quite a steep power draw of around 300W (not that any gamer in the high end segment cares about power draw).

What we know so far: AMD Radeon RX 5950XT Navi GPU family spotted in EEC filing online and leaked benchmarks

The EEC filing, in fact, mentions four new GPUs: Radeon RX 5950XT (the flagship), Radeon RX 5950, Radeon RX 5900 and the Radeon RX 5800. This means we can expect at the very least one more Navi GPU with three variants each. It is entirely possible that this is the Big Navi that was promised to us almost 2.5 years ago and the one that will deliver to AMD fans the high-end card they have been waiting for. On the other hand, it is also possible that this is a new die that the company prepared and while these graphics cards will obviously more powerful than the RX 5800 series, it is still not Big Navi.

Without any further ado, here is a screenshot of the EEC filing submitted by AFOX corporation - an add-in board partner for AMD Radeon.

Considering we are looking at at least four confirmed launches from AMD where graphics cards are concerned, it is very likely that the Open VR entrant we saw recently is one of these. Nomenclature would dictate that the RX 5950 XT be significantly more powerful than any of its younger siblings (like the already-released RX 5700) and going by the steps involved, we can easily see that this is going to be quite a powerful card.

AMD's CEO, Dr. Lisa Su, did recently promise high-end Radeon RX Navi GPUs. Lisa also mentioned that AMD is heavily investing in ray tracing for their 2020 discrete GPU lineup which would feature the 2nd Generation RNDA architecture with hardware-level integration to support ray-tracing. The features to expect from 2nd Generation RDNA Navi GPUs would be:

  • Optimized 7nm+ process node
  • Enthusiast-grade desktop graphics card options
  • Hardware-Level Ray Tracing Support
  • A mix of GDDR6 and HBM2 graphics cards
  • More power-efficient than First-Gen Navi GPUs

AMD's GPU side has been pretty much lackluster over the past couple of years and while the CPU side has made one hell of a comeback, its time for Radeon to shine once again. The last impressive launch that I recall was Hawaii and the RX 5950 XT looks like it could restart AMD's competitive streak in the GPU side of things as well. Equipped with a process advantage over its competitors, and with NVIDIA backed into a corner with its expensive Turing chips, this is one of the biggest opportunities for AMD Radeon to shine again.

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