AMDs new graphics architecture is called Polaris

AMD logoThe rumours were true: AMD's new graphics architecture is called Polaris (it previously went under the codename Arctic Islands), it's based on a 14nm FinFET process, and it'll ship in "mid-2016." Given that AMD's GPUsand indeed Nvidia'shave been stuck at the larger 28nm process node for several years, the move to 14nm should bring huge improvements in power consumption and performance per watt.

Details are thin on the groundAMD has promised to go into much greater detail at a later datebut for now the company has confirmed that Polaris is the fourth generation of its Graphics Core Next (GCN) architecture. The current GCN architecture, GCN 1.2, is used by the likes of the Radeon R9 285 and R9 Fury. Improvements to the command processor, geometry processor, L2 cache, memory controller, multimedia cores, and display engine are promised in fourth-gen GCN, as well as to the all important compute units at the heart of the GPU.

AMDs new graphics architecture is called Polaris

Polaris will support hardware 4K h.265 encoding and decoding at 60 FPS, DisplayPort 1.3, and, at long last, HDMI 2.0a. The latter was missing from AMD's recent Fury and 300-series of GPUs, which instead featured HDMI 1.4a that limited 4K signals to 30 FPS at 60Hz, making them less than ideal for use in the living room with 4K TVs.

AMD Polaris

As for the all-important performance improvements, interestingly AMD is only offering up a performance comparison against a mid-range GTX 950 graphics card from Nvidia. It claims the Polaris-based card consumes 85W while driving Star Wars: Battlefront at 60 FPS on the medium preset, versus 140W on the Nvidia card. That AMD has chosen a mid-range card for comparisonalong with a claim that Polaris is ideal for small form factors and "console-calibre performance in a thin and light notebook"suggests that the architecture will launch in notebooks or lower-wattage parts first, before making the jump to high-end GPUs.

Nvidia employed a similar strategy with its Maxwell architecturewhich was also designed for low power consumption and portable deviceslaunching with the mid-range GTX 750 and 750 Ti. That AMD might launch with lower-wattage parts first isn't all that surprising given its latest flagship GPUsthe Fury and Fury Xonly launched towards the tail end of 2015.

Consumption AMD Polaris

Dimensions AMD Polaris

AMD has promised to reveal more about Polaris over the coming months, as well as drop more details at this year's CES, currently taking place in Las Vegas.

Source: Ars Technica

Tags: AMD, videocards

Add comment

Your name:
Sign in with:
Your comment:

Enter code:

E-mail (not required)
E-mail will not be disclosed to the third party

Last news

A mobile hotspot in Australia will be capable of hitting gigabit speeds on the go
A new game could be in the works as Blizzard appears to have been hiring for a Diablo-related project
Nokia CEO Rajeev Suri will speak at MWC 2017
However what if you could go way, way back?
The Helio P15 packs an octa-core Cortex-A53 processor clocked at 2.2GHz
Samsung claims up to 27-percent higher performance or 40-percent lower power
Preliminary data for October shows another Windows 10 boom
Samsung Galaxy TabPro S - a tablet with the Windows-keyboard
The first Windows-tablet with the 12-inch display Super AMOLED
June 7, 2016 /
Keyboards for iOS
Ten iOS keyboards review
July 18, 2015 /
Samsung E1200 Mobile Phone Review
A cheap phone with a good screen
March 8, 2015 / 4
Creative Sound Blaster Z sound card review
Good sound for those who are not satisfied with the onboard solution
September 25, 2014 / 2
Samsung Galaxy Gear: Smartwatch at High Price
The first smartwatch from Samsung - almost a smartphone with a small body
December 19, 2013 /
HP Slate 7 is a 7-inch Android 4 Tablet PC with good sound
A cost-effective, 7-inch tablet PC from a renowned manufacturer
October 25, 2013 / 4

News Archive



Do you use microSD card with your phone?
or leave your own version in comments