AMD's New Radeon RX 480 Driver Fixes Power Issues

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George Phillips

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This fix is FAST. I have been bashing AMD for not making Polaris chips in TSMC for potentially much faster clock rates and lower power, but this fix is fast and good. AMD needs to do more to drive the prices down from Nvidia camp!
 

Math Geek

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was kind of hoping for a game run or 2 to see if there was any hit to performance with the small voltage drop we all knew was coming. i'm assuming it is minimal but without some benchmarks, we'll have all the nvidia fans claiming it "cripples" the card and all the other nonsense i know is coming as fast as they can get to this thread. *sigh*

way to go AMD getting a fix out quickly anyway.

edit: guru3d ran some benchmarks and showed no performance hit with the new driver. http://www.guru3d.com/news-story/radeon-rx-480-performance-benchmarks-with-16-7-1-driver.html looks like a winner for the fix if it reduces the power draw and does not effect performance.
 

FritzEiv

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Yeah, always the issue: Quick post or further testing. FormatC was all over it though, and we wanted to get this up quickly . . . he even worked with me to translate this, WHILE he was watching the soccer match. (Please cue the conspiracy theories of how AMD must have been pressuring us.)
 

jimmysmitty

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I would hope that no one would be that stupid TBH.



It is good they have a fix. I think it is too late though as it will put people off and push them to buy the AiBs or the GTX 1060.

As for the fans, it goes both ways. Both fanboys are useless and do nothing to help a company.
 

Kenneth Hans

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Yet another Radeon driver issue. This has been going on for SO many years. It's one of the reasons I gave up on those AMD/ATI cards years ago.
nVidia for the win!!!
 

Math Geek

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LMAO and we have our first fanboy showing. like nvidia did not have to release a driver fox for the 1080 fan surging problem it had at launch. .......:no:
 

redgarl

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I am impressed. I was not expecting this. Finally AMD can leave all this story behind.
 

redgarl

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Keep your 3.5GB of memory on your 970 GTX and your FE 1080 GTX throttling after 15 minutes of gameplay.
 
Does anyone remember that the reference clocked, PEG powered GTX 750 Ti regularly goes over 75 watts of power usage in Metro Last Light at 1080? The RX 480 is hardly a 4k card, so running a benchmark scenario that would clearly be unplayable seems a bit out of touch and designed to do one thing, show the absolute worst power usage possible. I would love to see the worst case power readings of a PEG powered 750 Ti under the same conditions, if it would even cooperate.

Tom's GTX 750 Ti Power Consumption Charts
 

jimmysmitty

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The purpose of 4K is to stress the card and give a highest possible situation. Thats why they did 1080P with the 750 Ti even though it is not a 1080P GPU.

As well that is a PCIe slot power draw only card being compared to a PCIe plus 6 pin. Note it is also a 28nm GPU vs a 14nm GPU and it is still averaging 64w from the PCIe slot while, before the "fix" the RX 480 was averaging 82w from the PCIe slot.

Either way the issue is no resolved and we are looking forward to seeing what the AiBs can do with better designs.
 

InvalidError

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If the reason for the RX480's passable power-efficiency is architectural in nature, as is almost certainly the case based on how it fares only slightly better than the 28nm GTX970 on performance per watt, having it made by TSMC would have made little difference.
 

alextheblue

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Perhaps the article did not make it clear enough.

If you just install the driver and leave it on default, it does NOT sacrifice clocks but it still reins in the mainboard draw by 10W. The 6-pin cable picks up the slack and isn't at any risk. Only when manually enabling compatibility mode does it reduce clocks a couple percent, and even then performance is virtually unchanged. But who would bother? It's nice they made it an option, but seriously nobody in the market for a card like this is going to turn on compat mode. Heck when the aftermarket cards come out with beefy coolers and 8-pins, people are going to OC these like crazy.

Anyway it's a good thing AMD's driver team worked their butt off to get this out post-haste, or this could have hurt their sales when the next batch of cards makes its way to retailers.
 

FormatC

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It seems there were a few hand-made cards and someone shared info, pics and hardware. You can buy a lot of interesting things on the Asian grey market, also engineering PCB or pre-production samples. You remember the Afox HD 6850 Single slot card that I've orgaized a few years ago? Same thing. A partially deactivated chip, looking like a "HD 6830", but this has never reached the final market. But it was still existing :)

I came from the industry and moved to media a few years ago with an own lab. And I'm not Intel, AMD, Nvidia or whatever biased and I was it never, but I hate bad products or better: the way how a few guys inside this companies made/make really good things at the end totally worse. Nearly 15 years in German quality management characterized me a little bit. This isn't any kind of nitpicking - this is only the respect for others work and the resulting product. And finally also the respect for the customers (our readers) to help them to get the best possible stuff for the money. :)

It was the same thing with Cooler Master / AVC and their crappy pump for the Fury X. I know a lot of people in the OEM business to collect inside info and it was me a pleasure to hit this companies a little bit. Nobody has controlled the quality. AVC made a bad product, Cooler Master hasn't controlled it, PC Partner closed the eyes and mounted this pump unit onto the PCB and AMD sent us the final boxes without any own quality control in the whole processs. This is a no-go, sorry.

I reviewed so far six 1070/1080 from four different companies and not one card was free of problems or issues. Bad or missing hysteresis, the stupid positioning of two very hot shunts on the back side of a PCB, directly below the PWM controller on the front side (big hotspot), erroneous fan modules (they stopped the mass production after my measuring of the PWM signals and changed the models) and a few other things... Don't tell me that a product is perfect. It looks only good... :p
 

FormatC

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Why? The results are more or less similar. Without the compatibilty activated you will feel 100% no difference. But take a closer look to the change log! They also improved a few games, one reason more to make my measurings only with older, matured games - optimezed from both companies over a longer time. To be fair to both ;)

The compatibility mode costs you also more or less nothing. Not mentionable in 1080p, and only in 2160p you will se a few more bad frame times. But who will use this card in Ultra HD?
 
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