With every passing day, an increasing number of professionals rely on GPU-assisted software to get the job done. Whether that’s 3D modeling, prototyping, geological work, or creative pursuits, workstations are becoming more common in the workplace. These aren’t the same massive rigs that used to power these jobs, and AMD is targeting the mainstream market with three powerful new WX Series professional GPUs that all take up just one PCIe slot each.
That’s right, whether it’s the unassuming but powerful WX 4100, or the WX 7100, which AMD claims is the world’s most powerful single-slot workstation GPU, all the cards are designed to fit in smaller cases with more basic power supplies.
The aforementioned WX 4100 sits at the bottom end of the trio, and is an ideal option for small systems and lightweight CAD users. This little beast generates 2.4 Teraflops of maximum power on just 50 watts or less, allowing the 6.6-inch, 4GB card to work even in systems without extra power cables coming off the power supply. When it launches on November 10, the WX 4100 will cost $399.
Next up, the mid-tier WX 5100 is built for real-time visualization and design at 1,920 x 1,080. It generates 3.9 Tflops on just 75 watts of power — without any external power, once again — and packs in a full 8GB of GDDR5 memory. It’s not built for gaming, but instead to allow quick iteration and prototyping throughout the design phase. The WX 5100 comes out a little later than the other two cards, and will cost $499 when it lands on shelves.
Finally, the top-of-the-line WX 7100 packs the most performance possible into the single-wide PCIe form factor. It boasts a lofty 5.7 Tflops with 8GB of GDDR5. Power usage stays under 130 watts, so you’ll need external power, but it should be fine even in systems with modest power supplies. It’s built for virtual reality and above-1080p developers, who need serious performance for testing and optimization. That power doesn’t come cheap, at $799 for the WX 7100 when it becomes available on November 10.
If these prices look steep to you, it’s important to remember these aren’t gaming cards like the Radeon RX series, despite how their specifications may look on paper. They lack a number of the gaming-focused benefits those cards possess, although the WX Series is based on the GCN 4.0 architecture, so they support multi-card setups through CrossFire, and FreeSync over DisplayPort. Still, it’s unlikely anyone who isn’t using these cards to make money with these cards would buy them, but anyone looking for a work upgrade should keep an eye out for these slim, powerful GPUs.
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