A number of sites are reporting that they’ve got the inside track on AMD’s upcoming Navi 7nm GPUs, and the news is interesting, if deserving of being consumed with a copious serving of salt.
According to Fudzilla, the upcoming 7nm Navi GPU will serve as the successor to the current Radeon RX 500 Series, offering GeForce GTX 1080 or Radeon RX Vega 64 levels of performance for just $250.
Just to make it clear, the suggestion is that Navi will be a mainstream chip rather than the enthusiast GPU we’d been expecting. AMD won’t have anything faster than its current Radeon RX Vega 64 between now and the end of 2019, the focus is purely going to be on raising the performance of the bottom and middle of the graphics card market, an area which typically brings in 5x the revenue of the enthusiast GPUs which are a comparatively tiny portion of the market. The first Navi-powered graphics cards are expected to be out in the second half of 2018.
According to the report, the Navi GPU will be a small, low-power, high-performance desktop chip that will be gunning for the $250 sweet spot price point currently occupied by the GTX 1060 and the Radeon RX 580, if they were actually selling for their true value.
The sad news is that, if true, AMD is effectively surrendering the top-end of the market to Nvidia once again. Considering graphics card sales are heavily weighted towards the lower-end cards though, this may not be as big a deal as it seems. If you’re after the best of the best then you’re going to have to go the Team Green route, while price to performance on the low and mid-range cards could fall in AMD’s favour.
So your opinion on this mooted idea is going to depend on just how much money you’re willing to spend on graphics cards. For the vast majority, being able to get GTX 1080 levels of performance for $250 is an incredible proposition. As an advancement of graphics tech though, AMD won’t really be moving the needle, all the while Nvidia will inevitably be slowing our socks off with the GeForce GTX 1180, 2080, or whatever it’s going to end up being called.
Would you be open to AMD targeting the mid-tier GPU markets? Or does it still need to compete with Nvidia at the high-end? Let us know what you think!