AMD has released the Radeon HD 7790 and it is set to offer an adequately powerful card for modern gaming at a price that is easy on the budget. Possible connections to the upcoming Xbox 720 aside, the card both fills a gap in AMD’s pricing scheme and represents a step forward in budget gaming and graphics. We will take a look at some of the specifications and features included in the upcoming GPU.
The Radeon HD 7790 is built on the 1.2 version of the Graphics Card Next architecture, codenamed Bonaire, which combines the greater primitive rate of the Pitcairn and Tahiti architectures seen in the 7800 and 7900 lines with portions of the 7700 lines’ Cape Verde architecture. It comes with slots for HDMI, DVI, VGA, and DP connections, giving a wide range of possible configurations. The card’s interface is a healthy PCI-e 3.0 x16, it runs on DirectX 11.1, and it also comes with OpenGL 4.2 technology support. The card draws around 85W when running at maximum, so a 500W or greater power supply is recommended.
Ati Radeon 7790 Specs
The first big number most people will be interested in is the 1 GB of GDDR5 RAM, which may not sound stellar when compared to monstrosities like the GTX Titan even though it has enough memory to handle 1080p and most gaming. The RAM is settled on a 128-bit memory interface. It may not be the fastest bus in the world, but it is appropriate for the specs of the card.
The architecture comes with 896 stream processors, 56 texture units, 64 Z-Stencil ROP units, and 16 colour ROP units. This puts it at 256 stream processors and 16 texture units over the HD 7770, and it has just under half in all categories compared to its cousin, the 7970. Since the 7770 and 7790 are so closely related, this means an expected jump in performance of 25% or more. Since graphical computations are hardly linear, it is not a 200% performance jump if you go up to 7970, even if the more powerful card costs twice as much.
The clock speeds are a definite plus, with the card having around 1 GHz in the core clock and 1.5 GHz for the memory clock speed. Combined with the 128-bit bus, this gives a maximum memory bandwidth of about 96 GB per second. For comparison, the GTX 650 has a bandwidth of 80 GB/s, and the 7770 has one of 72 GB/s. Finally, the 7790 has the same 16 Gigapixel fillrate as the 7770, which is already above the GTX 650.
As to be expected from a modern AMD card, the HD 7790 comes with AMD Crossfire technology for multiple GPUs, and AMD Eyefinity technology that can handle up to six displays at once. AMD’s App Acceleration provides improved video and gaming performance by improving the rendering and display of high quality graphics like 1080p HD. It comes with AMD HD3D technology for stereoscopic 3D displays and Blu-ray 3D support. The PowerPlay and ZeroCore Power features drop the already low 85W power draw to negligible levels when possible.
The Final Look
Overall, the 7790 is not a benchmarking marvel, but what it does do is provide a great amount of performance for the price it costs. It fills the sweet spot for most casual gamers and video editors and even touches on the bottom line of desired specifications for enthusiasts. If you are looking for a relatively inexpensive card that can handle your average modern game, then the 7790 is perfect.