We expected AMD’s HD 7990 to show up at Computex this year, but we had no luck. A dual-GPU card from AMD was inevitable, as they, just like Nvidia, always have a dual-GPU graphics card that is usually the fusion of two of their highest-end GPU cores linked by CrossFire on a single PCB. The board is codenamed “New Zealand” and according to VR-Zone, AMD has now informed their board partners that the card will be arriving sometime in late August, at the earliest. The new reference PCB design will have a slightly different power system as well.
Rather than just slapping on two eight-pin power connectors, AMD will be using four six-pin power connectors. These four separate power connectors will give the card a unique multiphase power system that's essentially divided into three groups. One of the groups involves delivering power to the two cores, while the third group will deliver power to the PLX connector, which connects the two cores. Whether this solution is enough to offer a competitive edge over the GTX 690 is yet to be seen. Other than the power system, the card will also have support for six displays out-of-the box. These include two DVI ports along with four miniDP ports.
Back in May, we heard rumours about board partners taking matters into their own hands and planning on launching dual-GPU solutions of their own that would bear the ‘X2’ moniker. However, this didn’t exactly happen. We guess manufacturers are busy waiting for the reference design from AMD itself, which should be heading their way towards the end of August. The card will go head on with the GTX 690, which is currently the fastest graphics card in the world. In order to take them down, AMD will have to bring their A-Game, not only in hardware but software as well. Drivers have always been a weak point for AMD and although they’ve improved over the years, Nvidia has always had an upper hand in this department. The company does deliver really good hardware, but that’s only half the story as drivers can just as easily make or break any hardware.
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