New leak points to the power of AMD’s Radeon RX Vega graphics cards

We now know more about the alleged specs of AMD’s incoming RX Vega graphics cards, at least if details which were gleaned from poking around in an update for Linux turn out to be accurate.

The DRM (direct rendering manager) update for Linux adds support for Vega to the open source operating system, and as Wccftech spotted, it contains a raft of details concerning the specifications of the next-generation GPU.

Vega 10 will have 64 next generation compute units, each with 64 GCN stream processors. That means it will have a total of 4,096 next generation GCN stream processors, divided into four divisions, each of which makes for a shader engine.

And those shader engines will boast two asynchronous compute units, one render back-end (made up of 16 render output units or ROPs – multiplied by four for a total of 64 ROPs) and four texture blocks (of 16 texture mapping units each – for a total of 256).

Polaris perspective

To put that into some sort of practical perspective, a current (Polaris generation) Radeon RX 480 graphics card has 2,304 stream processors compared to Vega’s 4,096, and half the ROPs – 32 compared to 64 for Vega.

The RX 480 also has 144 texture mapping units compared to 256 for Vega. So broadly speaking, this next-gen card is close to doubling everything up here.

Previous leaks have shown that the Vega 10 GPU will be running with 8GB of HBM2 video memory, and the high-end card is expected to deliver 12.5 Tflops of compute power (compared to 11.3 Tflops for the GTX 1080 Ti, and 9 Tflops for the GTX 1080).

Remember – none of this is confirmed information, and it still remains in the realm of speculation. But we shouldn’t have long to wait to find out the truth of the specs – AMD will be launching Vega cards either in May, or most probably next month.

Pricing will, of course, be key, and it will be interesting to see where AMD pitches the cost of these new graphics cards compared to Nvidia’s line-up. There won’t be any huge Ryzen-style undercutting here, though, as was seen in AMD’s battle against Intel in the processor world.

AMD is obviously hoping that Vega and Ryzen will be a potent combination to tempt gamers out there, although it isn’t all about the hardware. AMD is also collaborating directly with publishers and developers such as Bethesda, to optimize games for better performance with its CPUs and GPUs.

Darren is a freelancer writing news and features for TechRadar (and occasionally T3) across a broad range of computing topics including CPUs, GPUs, various other hardware, VPNs, antivirus and more. He has written about tech for the best part of three decades, and writes books in his spare time (his debut novel - 'I Know What You Did Last Supper' - was published by Hachette UK in 2013).