New AMD 79x0 SKU, and more Radeon HD7000(M) release dates

AMD's flagship new single-GPU graphics cards may not be the best they have to offer. The Radeon HD7970 may be the fastest production graphics card currently, but the high overclocks reported by many reviewers show that the cards can perform better than even AMD claimed. With a stock speed of 925 MHz, several reviewers have reported clock speeds of 1100 MHz and more without increasing the core voltage. According to Fudzilla, AMD are considering releasing a faster single-GPU graphics core.

Some reports say that AMD are preparing a GPU with 2304 shaders (12.5% more than the HD 7970), following the publishing of a page from a Sapphire development document at Chiphell. Combining both these sources, there are a number of options for providing faster cards. Factory overclocked cards are the norm today, so if there truly are 2304 cores that can be enabled on the Tahiti core, with the overclocking potential already seen in HD 7970, we are going to see even more performance coming from the AMD camp.

It is unclear so far what plans AMD have, in terms of speed, number of shaders or brand name (such as HD 7980?), but what is certain is that they have raised the bar for cost effective high-performance desktop graphics solutions. It does appear, however, that stocks of Radeon HD 7970 cards have been limited due to low quantities being available. Whether that is by design or another production problem is not known, but AMD expect to have more HD 7970 cores ready to ship by the Chinese New Year (January 23).

In other AMD GPU news, Computerbase have reported that Radeon HD 7700M and above mobile GPUs will be ready to market around the time that Ivy Bridge is launched (the first day of CeBIT 2012, March 6). These will be 28nm chips, using the Graphics Core Next technology.

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