Vesuvius Set to Strike: Dual-Chip Radeon R9 290X “Hawaii” in the Works

AMD Readies New Dual-Chip Flagship Graphics Card

by Anton Shilov
11/18/2013 | 09:48 AM

Two is always better than one, which is exactly why Advanced Micro Devices is working on a graphics card currently known under Vesuvius code-name that features two of its leading-edge graphics processing units known as Hawaii. The rumored product will dethrone all available high-end graphics solutions and thanks to all-new multi-GPU technology will possibly demonstrate new levels of graphics performance scalability.


A potential dual-chip Hawaii X2 graphics card code-named Vesuvius (R9 290Xx2 or R9 290X*2 or R9 299?) is expected to feature 5632 stream processors (88 compute units with 64sp per CU), 352 texture units (TUs), 256 raster output units (ROPs), 8 geometry processors, 16 asynchronous compute engines (ACEs), 2MB L2 cache, twelve EyeFinity display controllers, various multimedia special-purpose hardware as well as 512-bit*2 memory bus. The dual-chip graphics card is set to feature incredible performance at an ultimate cost, according to VR-Zone web-site.

AMD Radeon R9 290X graphics card

Modern AMD Hawaii graphics processing units (GPUs) have a number of clear advantages over their predecessors when it comes to multi-GPU performance scaling. The new chip features so-called CrossFire XDMA [CrossFire X direct memory access] units that – via PCI Express 3.0 bus with up to whopping 128GB/s bandwidth via 16 lanes – transfer data between multiple GPUs at a very low latency, possibly, thanks to data packet prioritizing feature that existed even in PCIe 1.0a, but has been rarely used for some reasons. In addition, XDMA should enable access of one GPU to the memory pool of another.

Moreover, the Hawaii GPU has its own DMA engine, which potentially may be used to access to the same memory space as microprocessors and thus to better accelerate GPGPU-based apps.

Since Nvidia Corp. no longer offers its dual-chip GeForce GTX 690 graphics cards and AMD Radeon HD 7990 is also absent from the market, the new dual-chip solution from AMD will become the highest-performing graphics card available today. Unfortunately, it is unclear when the new graphics board is set to reach stores and at what price-point.

AMD did not connect on the story