Update 7/6/2015 4:00PM PST: AMD has released a statement regarding the pump whine issue.
We have received feedback that during open bench testing a small number of Fury X cards emit a sound from the high speed liquid cooling pump that, while not loud, is bothersome to some users. While the vast majority of initial Fury X owners report remarkably quiet operation, we take this feedback seriously, as AMD’s mission is to always deliver the best possible experience to our Radeon customers.
AMD Radeon R9 Fury X customers demand and deserve the best, so adjustments in the sound baffling adhesive compound were applied in the assembly of the high speed cooling pump to address the specific sound a few end users experienced as problematic. This improved the acoustic profile of the pump, and repeat testing shows the specific pitch/sound in question was largely reduced through adjustments to the sound-baffling adhesive compound in the pump.
AMD will work with its graphic card partners to ensure the satisfaction of the small number of initial customers who observed this specific sound and experienced it as bothersome. AMD is confident that on-going production of Radeon R9 Fury X product reduces the specific sound in question, but this is also a highly subjective matter with wide differences in PC case builds and room acoustics.
The AMD Radeon™ R9 Fury X radiator fan is near silent, and this makes any sound from the high-speed pump more noticeable to some end users, especially during open bench testing. Thus although the overall sound levels are remarkably low for an enthusiast product, AMD has worked to reduce the specific sound that some customers report as bothersome.
Importantly, while this statement does provide an apology, it does not indicate a general recall. The language stating AMD “will work with its graphics card partners” means returns will have to be handled through the third-party vendors selling Fury X cards.
Original text: AMD just can’t seem to catch a break. First, its 300 series cards were discovered to be mostly made up of re-branded 200 series GPUs (many of which were re-branded 7000 series chips from 2011). Then the performance of the Fury X fell short of Nvidia’s GTX 980 Ti. And now that seem liquid-cooled card is suffering from annoying, persistent pump whine issues.
Cards from AMD have been know to run hotter than Nvidia’s alternative in recent years, and as such they often have louder coolers. However, many people hoped that the new generation of HBM sporting cards would be more efficient, and thanks to the use of in-built water cooling, quieter too. It turns out that that’s not been the case.
These concerned appeared in some reviews, as some outlets noticed high levels of noise from the Fury X’s pump. AMD quelled these concerns by saying the problem was merely an early batch of samples sent out to reviewers. It assured everyone else that whine was unlikely to be heard in retail cards. However, further tests from the likes of PC Perspective suggest that retail versions of the cards may have been affected, too.
AMD has since updated its response to state that some retail cards were also affected by this first batch which had the slightly noisy pump, but that in the future that should not be the case. While this does sound like back-peddling, it isn’t exactly clear which cards were tested in the follow up trials, so it may be that the problematic batch ended up supplying both of the tested cards.
Have any of you ordered one of the new cards from AMD? If you’re on the fence about it, do the new claims over pump whine make you want to change your mind?