E3 isn't just big game announcements and wall-to-wall trailers, it's also about hardware.
This week the AMD Radeon RX5700 series has seen the light of day and it comes in three different versions ranging from $379-$499. Lisa Su, CEO of AMD, showed off a variety of new specifications and products, for gamers the most interesting aspect (besides the new Ryzen 3000 series) is the graphics cards and new top-of-the-line high-end CPU called the Ryzen 9 3950X,
The RX5700 series comes in an XT and non-XT model, along with a 50th-anniversary version with increased clock speeds and gold accents - featuring the signature of Dr. Lisa Su and a 10.14 TFLOPS performance priced at $499. It is aimed at providing "amazing 1440p gaming". Looking at the prices, there will be stiff competition for Intel with the new 7nm generation from AMD.
The cards are built on the new RDNA architecture, which is the foundation of AMD's next-generation platform, which will most likely be powering the upcoming Project Scarlett and PS5 as well. AMD claims to have achieved 1.25x performance per clock, and perhaps even more importantly, 1.5x performance per watt compared with the current GCN architecture.
AMD focused on the 70% of gamers using hardware that is three years older or more - and the performance benefits from upgrading - while pricing suggests that AMD will yet again bring bang-per-buck to the frontlines as their main weapon.
There is focus on reducing input lag, as well as increasing the options of DisplayPort 1.4 - with new DSC (Display Stream Compression), 8K HDR 60 Hz, and 4K HDR 144hz now possible via a single DisplayPort 1.4 cable.
The new graphics cards also support PCIe 4.0 that was introduced with the new Ryzen 3000 series CPU.
RX5700XT has 40 compute units, 2560 Stream Processors, 9.75 TFLOPS, Base Clock of 1605 MHz, Boost Clock of 1905 MHz, and a Game Clock of 1755 MHz, priced at $449.
Both cards come with 8 GB of GDDR6 RAM, and the normal RX5700 features 36 Compute Units and 2304 Stream Processors, while the Base Clock is 1465 MHz, 1625 MHz Game Clock, and 1725Mhz Boost Clock - while aggressively priced at $379.
July 7 is stated as release date for both the RX5700 series and the Ryzen 3000 series CPUs - and a new chapter in terms of real competition on the market can hopefully start - while we still wait for AMD to release an RTX2080TI killer or, at least, a direct competitor, it will be interesting to see if Intel and Nvidia can match the performance-per-dollar on upcoming products, or at the very least are forced to rethink their current pricing model.
To increase the incentive to go with them, three months of Xbox Games Pass for PC will be included as well.
The AMD Ryzen 3000 series is right around the corner, starting with the $99 3200G model (4 cores, 4 Threads), up to the $499 3900X (12 cores, 24 Threads) - but a real competitor to the Intel I9 9900X has as previously mentioned being missing - until now.
The Ryzen 9 3950X is a claimed world first 16 core mainstream desktop CPU to rival the Intel X series for combined streaming, gaming and content creation. It features 32 Threads, running 3.5 GHz, with a Boost Clock up to 4.7 GHz. The TDP is stated as 105 Watts, and it has 72 Mb of Cache, and 44 PCIe 4.0 Lanes in an X570 Motherboard.
It releases in September at $749, and will hit the market roughly a month before Intel releases their next generation of 10nm CPUs. This question is now whether Intel has something that can compete at this price point?