Having just left the stage at AMD’s financial analyst day is CEO Dr. Lisa Su, who was on stage to present an update on AMD’s computing and graphic business. As AMD has already previously discussed their technology roadmaps over the next two years earlier in this presentation, we’ll jump right into the new material.

Not mentioned in AMD’s GPU roadmap but now being mentioned by Dr. Su is confirmation that AMD will be launching new desktop GPUs this quarter. AMD is not saying much about these new products quite yet, though based on their description it does sound like we’re looking at high-performance products (and for anyone asking, the picture of the card is a placeholder; AMD doesn’t want to show any pictures of the real product quite yet). These new products will support DirectX 12, though I will caution against confusing that with Feature Level 12_x support until we know more.

Meanwhile the big news here is that these forthcoming GPUs will be the first AMD GPUs to support High Bandwidth Memory. AMD’s GPU roadmap coyly labels this as a 2016 technology, but in fact it is coming to GPUs in 2015. The advantage of going with HBM at this time is that it will allow AMD to greatly increase their memory bandwidth capabilities while bringing down power consumption. Coupled with the fact that any new GPU from AMD should also include AMD’s latest color compression technology, and the implication is that the effective increase in memory bandwidth should be quite large. For AMD, they see this as being one of the keys of delivering better 4K performance along with better VR performance.

In the process AMD has also confirmed that these HBM-equipped GPUs will allow them to experiment with new form factors. By placing the memory on the same package as the GPU, AMD will be able to save space and produce smaller cards, which will allow them to produce designs other than the traditional large 10”+ cards that are typical of high-end video cards. AMD competitor NVIDIA has been working on HBM as well and has already shown off a test vehicle for one such card design, so we have reason to expect that AMD will be capable of something similar.

With apologies to AMD: NVIDIA’s Pascal Test Vehicle, An Example Of A Smaller, Non-Traditional Video Card Design

Finally, while talking about HBM on GPUs, AMD is also strongly hinting that they intend to bring HBM to other products as well. Given their product portfolio, we consider this to be a pretty transparent hint that the company wants to build HBM-equipped APUs. AMD’s APUs have traditionally struggled to reach peak performance due to their lack of memory bandwidth – 128-bit DDR3 only goes so far – so HBM would be a natural extension to APUs.

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  • chizow - Wednesday, May 6, 2015 - link

    Sorry yeah, can't really agree with that when there's at least 3 major features right now in AMD's drivers that are still broken/supposed to be fixed that I rely upon and that's before even getting into Day1/game compatibility type stuff or the various value-add features GeForce brings to the table.

    1) For starters, low power mode while driving multiple monitors. I drive 4 monitors, AMD still hasn't fixed this low power state problem while driving multi-monitors. The difference between 20W while working and 220W while gaming is immense. 220W all the time would be....unpleasant to say the least.
    2) VSR. Very limited resolutions supported (no 2x2 or 4K for a 1080p panel on all cards except the 285), with no guarantee this is updated/fixed on these new cards. DSR works amazingly on newer Nvidia hardware right now especially for older games.
    3) FreeSync. Yeah, still a big "I" for Incomplete on this one. Would be REALLY hard to invest in a new $500-700 AMD GPU and a $600+ FreeSync monitor with all the questions and outstanding issues out there relating to VRR windows, ghosting, crossfire support etc.

    And when it comes to work? I administrate a multi-million dollar data center that disagrees with you. :) We exclusively run Nvidia for our computational workloads. CAD and graphic design are more mixed, but still far more that request Quadro for SolidWorks, AutoCAD and Creative Suite/Cloud. The only "Radeons" are in the handful of Mac Pros we have, and Apple does most of the QA/support for them. I did have a user insist on a 290X once but it ended up being shelved for 3 months while we waited for a firmware update from Lenovo to fix their UEFI boot issue. I guess that's not really AMD's problem per se, just shows they're not very well supported by OEMs, either.
  • amilayajr - Wednesday, May 6, 2015 - link

    Holy cow you talk too much. I tell you what, go inside your washroom and deal with some business down there and release some stress...... It's just freaking graphics cards. Buy whatever you want and don't mind others whatever they want to buy. So what if AMD makes this and that product that doesn't meet your expectations. For all I care as a buyer, I will buy whatever my money can buy and what I can afford that will meet my requirements and needs. Now, go back and do some releasing. You definitely need one.
  • chizow - Wednesday, May 6, 2015 - link

    Cool take your own advice, and make sure to flush. The great thing about the internet is that any idiot can make a claim, only those that truly know what they are talking about can back them up.
  • DinoBuaya - Wednesday, May 6, 2015 - link

    Exactly, idiots like you. Good of you to admit it.
  • chizow - Thursday, May 7, 2015 - link

    Like I said, a prime of example of some idiot making a claim, but lacking the knowledge to back it up.
  • DinoBuaya - Friday, May 8, 2015 - link

    By that you mean not even the basic knowledge to back up anything you have posted in all your posts so far in fact proves the very observation you are trying to make about others? Yup, we can see now why you are the prime example.
  • chizow - Friday, May 8, 2015 - link

    I've backed up what I've said aplenty, and I'm more than happy to do so in more detail if you like, Dino. :)
  • 01189998819991197253 - Friday, May 8, 2015 - link

    This fits you to a tee.
  • chizow - Friday, May 8, 2015 - link

    Oh great, another meme posting idiot on the internet. I am totally going to click that!
  • Barnassey - Wednesday, May 6, 2015 - link

    Don't forget the broken H.264 encoder that pretty much NO application uses.

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