AMD Radeon R9 290 launch delayed

AMD Radeon R9 290X header hardware

AMD has delayed the launch of the much-anticipated Radeon R9 290 to 5 November.

AMD gives no details as to why the launch has been delayed but reports that a new driver in the works that may improve performance significantly. If true, this means that the reviews done on the R9 290X are not representative of final performance, possibly placing it much higher than the GTX780 in terms of performance.

The delay may also be due to increased demand of the R9 290X following a rather successful launch and positive reviews by the media and enthusiasts alike. With a launching price tag of $549, forcing Nvidia to apply a price cut to the Geforce GTX780, along with several performance optimisations for future games promised, it’s clear that there’s been pent-up demand for a new high-end performer from AMD for some time.

In a press release sent out to retailers, distributors and journalists, the boost clock, memory speeds and TDP (thermal design power) were detailed. Below follows a table showing a comparison of the high-end cards available in the market as well as the new details about the R9 290. Note that the price of the GTX780 has been adjusted to reflect Nvidia’s new RRP.

Radeon R9 290X
Radeon R9 290
Geforce GTX Titan
Geforce GTX780
Shader Cores
2816 2688 2304
Raster Operators
64 64 48 48
Texture units
176 224 192
Clock speed 800MHz 800MHz 837MHz 863MHz
Boost speed 1000MHz 947MHz 876MHz 900MHz
Memory speed 1250MHz 1250MHz 1502MHz 1502MHz
VRAM buffer 4GB 4GB 6GB 3GB
Bus width 512-bit 512-bit 384-bit 384-bit
Bandwidth 320GB/s 320GB/s 288GB/s 288GB/s
TDP 300W 250W 250W 240W
Launch price $549 $999 $500

The R9 290 will share the same cooler design and memory speeds as the R9 290X, leading to my estimation that it may trail the R9 290 by 10-15% in benchmarks. However, with some light overclocking, it should be able to match the R9 290X.

One interesting thing to take into account, though, is that the R9 290X is already more than 10% faster than a stock GTX780 and trades blows with the GTX Titan. When you take into account that the GTX780 is the target of the R9 290, you’re going to be getting GTX Titan performance for nearly half the price with the R9 290.

AMD will be holding a developer summit on 11 November to talk about the future of their products as well as the new Mantle API, labelled by many including AMD as a game-changer.


More Hardware news:

Dell reborn as a private corporation – now what?

Nvidia drops prices on GTX770 and GTX780

Have Intel’s future plans changed?

AMD Radeon R9 290X review roundup

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AMD Radeon R9 290 launch delayed

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