AMD Announces The R9 290X And New Graphics Lineup

Sep 27, 2013 Written by:ROG Article

At GPU 14 in Hawaii (we're so jealous!), AMD announced some of the specs of its latest high-end graphics card the R9 290X. It features 4GB of memory on a 512-bit bus with a total memory bandwidth of over 300GB/sec! It also  features AMD's new TrueAudio DSP technology and has support for the latest DirectX 11.2. Pre-orders will go up in early October, so get in quick! amd-radeon-r9-290xYou might be thinking, R9? What happened to HD xxxx? Well since we're beyond the 'HD' era into Eyefinity, 4K and other eye-popping resolutions, AMD just revised its product stack to be a little more current. This is by no means the full line-up, according to AMD: At the top there's the R9 series:

  • R9 290X
  • R9 290
  • R9 280X
  • R9 270X

Currently followed by R7. (Use your imagination whether AMD will launch an R8, R6 or lower):

  • R7 260X
  • R7 250

Next, the first number is the generation. While we were up to 7000-series previously, AMD has reset this and now we're starting again at the '200'-series. The second digit represents the level of card, with 9 being the highest and currently 5 being the lowest announced. When there are two 9's (or, indeed others), the X represents the more 'eXtreme' version; so 290X is faster than 290. Keep an eye out for that crucial X when you're shopping around! In addition to these cards, AMD announced a brand new 'low-level' API dubbed Mantle, and DICE piped up with the fact that the highly-anticipated super-FPS Battlefield 4 supports it! In very general terms, this API replaces DirectX and AMD claims it improves performance by opening more features directly on their graphics cards. If that's perked your interest I fully suggest you read more and look out for the benchmarks once the R9 290X launches. Battlefield 4 goes Beta in the coming weeks as well, so it's a truly awesome time for PC gaming! As you'd expect, you can buy an ASUS branded R9 290X when its launches soon. While at first this will follow the design above, later on expect redesigned versions with improved cooling from an ASUS DirectCU II cooler and long-life, high-power VRM hardware from ASUS Super Alloy technology.