AMD’s long-expected, high-end graphics card solution, Vega, may turn out to be pretty capable, though not as powerful as Nvidia’s top-tier offerings. A new leak of 3Dmark results which seem to come from an RX Vega card, suggests it could be roughly as powerful as a GTX 1070.
It’s been a long time since AMD truly rivaled Nvidia at the top end of the graphics card power spectrum, often preferring to offer competition at the midrange and entry-level. However, rumors over the past six months suggested that Vega could well do more than that and though these leaked results don’t make it a world beater, offering real competition for the GTX 1070 would still be quite a feat.
The 3Dmark result pairs a “Generic VGA” card with an AMD Ryzen 7 1800X. That card, however, has the Vega device ID (687F:C1), which is what tipped off Guru3D to its true identity. The card achieved an overall score of 5,950 and a graphics score of 5,721 in the TimeSpy demo. That’s comparable to the GTX 1070 test results Guru3D achieved in its own internal testing.
If the card is indeed an AMD Vega graphics processor (GPU), it’s not necessarily the world beater some expected. However, it comes with 8GB of (most likely) HBM2 memory and a clock speed of just 1,200MHz, which suggests there could be a lot more headroom. It could be that this isn’t a top-of-the-line Vega graphics card and AMD could have something else up its sleeve for the top end too.
The driver used in this test are beta, too, so post-release drivers with optimizations could also yield higher scores.
At the very least though, third party options with more impressive cooling and an aggressive overclock should make a card like this a viable contender for GTX 1080 performance. It’s also fair to assume that an Intel CPU could lead to an improvement in overall performance, though that wouldn’t do much to the graphics test score.
Much of this is speculation for now. It could turn out that GTX 1070-level performance is the best we can hope for Vega, or this could be a test card that doesn’t perform as well as the final product. In either case, the market at the GTX 1080 and beyond level is very small, and not something that offers much financial incentive to AMD, even though the moral victory of having the most powerful cards in the world can do a lot for a manufacturer’s image.