AMD Radeon RX 480 Does Not Live Up to Its Hype

AMD has just released Radeon RX 480 NDA. This means tech sites are allowed to publish their review of Radeon RX 480. It turns out Radeon RX 480 is worse than my already not so high expectation. There are several reasons that makes it disappointing. I’ll listed them here :

  1. Raja Koduri stated that Polaris achieve the greatest leap in terms power efficiency. However, despite the new GPU is built on 14 nm FinFet, Radeon RX 480’s efficiency is not better than Radeon R9 Nano which is still using 28 nm fabrication process.
  2. Many people expect its performance to be on par or even better than Geforce GTX 980. It’s not. It’s worse than GTX 980. It’s just on par with Radeon R9 390. And to makes things worse, GTX 980’s efficiency is still better than Radeon RX 480 even though GTX 980 was built on 28 nm fabrication process.
  3. Overclocking performance is so poor. This is probably because AMD is forcing Polaris 10 to run higher than its ideal clock speed. I suspect this is also the reason why Polaris 10 is not efficient.
  4. Loud reference cooling. This still hasn’t change since 2013 when AMD released Radeon R9 290X with its noisy reference cooling.

Is that means Radeon RX 480 is all bad? Not really. This card is not only fast enough for majority of gamers but also able to provide entry level VR experience. Priced at US$200 and $230, the price is quite acceptable. However, I believe the price is actually beyond that. I’ve discussed with a few people from different countries. There are cases where the price is US$ 300 (converted) or even higher in several countries such as Russia, Brazil, and Malaysia. Of course, this ultimately destroys the value of this card.

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