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Radeon R9 290 Performance Figures Leaked, Beats GTX 780

If these performance numbers posted by credible reviewers at OCUK hold up, then AMD could have a second, more affordable graphics card for you, which outperforms NVIDIA's GeForce GTX 780, at least in synthetic benchmarks. In a brief performance run that spans synthetic tests, which included Unigine Heaven 3.0 at 1080p and 1440p resolutions, with normal level of tessellation; 3DMark 11 (performance preset) and 3DMark Fire Strike (both Normal and Extreme); the card we believe to be R9 290 (name blurred out in the graphs) is consistently faster than the GeForce GTX 780 reference, in the same bench.

Based on the same 28 nm "Hawaii" silicon as the Radeon R9 290X, the R9 290 is its more affordable sibling, featuring 2,560 Graphics CoreNext stream processors, 160 TMUs, 64 ROPs, and a 512-bit wide GDDR5 memory interface, holding 4 GB of memory. It features clock speeds of 947 MHz (core), and 5.00 GHz (memory, GDDR5-effective). There's no word on pricing, but it could be available from the 31st of October, 2013.

Source: Overclockers UK (OCUK)

Unigine Announces Valley GPU Benchmark

Valley Benchmark is a new GPU stress-testing tool from the developers of the very popular and highly acclaimed Heaven Benchmark. The forest-covered valley surrounded by vast mountains amazes with its scale from a bird's-eye view and is extremely detailed down to every leaf and flower petal. This non-synthetic benchmark powered by the state-of-the art UNIGINE Engine showcases a comprehensive set of cutting-edge graphics technologies with a dynamic environment and fully interactive modes available to the end user.

Offering a rare chance to experience a breath of untapped, crystal clear air, Valley Benchmark allows you to encounter a morning high up in the mountains when the snow-capped peaks are just barely glittering in the rising sun. Be it flying over the vast green expanses or hiking along rocky slopes, this journey continues as long you wish. Unique in every corner, this open-space world provides a wonderfully relaxing experience under the tranquil music and sounds of nature.
DOWNLOAD: Unigine Valley for Windows, Mac OS X, Linux

Unigine Releases Heaven 4.0 GPU Benchmark

UNIGINE Corp. has released a new, enhanced version 4.0 of Heaven Benchmark, the GPU intensive benchmark that gained massive popularity among overclockers and hardware manufacturers for hammering their graphics cards to the limits. This powerful tool can be effectively used to determine the stability of a GPU under extremely stressful conditions, as well as check the cooling system's potential under maximum heat output. It provides completely unbiased results and generates true in-game rendering workloads across all platforms, such as Windows, Linux and Mac OS X.

Heaven Benchmark immerses a user into a magical steampunk world of shiny brass, wood and gears. Nested on flying islands, a tiny village with its cozy, sun-heated cobblestone streets, an elaborately crafted dirigible above the expanse of fluffy clouds, and a majestic dragon on the central square gives a true sense of adventure. An interactive experience with fly-by and walk-through modes allows for exploring all corners of this world powered by the cutting-edge UNIGINE Engine that leverages the most advanced capabilities of graphics APIs and turns this benchmark into a visual masterpiece.
DOWNLOAD: Unigine Heaven 4.0 for Windows, Mac OS X, Linux

Unigine Returns with Two New GPU Benchmark Apps

A little later this week, Unigine Corp. will be announcing two new GPU benchmark apps, the Valley 1.0, and Heaven 4.0. The two apps are cross-platform, in that they support both Windows and Linux (x86/x64). On Windows, the two can max out feature-sets of the latest DirectX 11.x APIs, while on Linux, the two take advantage of the latest OpenGL 4.x. Valley uses an entirely new test scene that's a beautiful springtime depiction of a valley. Distant snow-capped peaks, a treeline, and dense foliage, the scene's got it all, coupled with lighting, and depth of field effects. Definitely something we'd like our GPUs to trip on.

Moving on, Unigine's second benchmark suite for the season is Heaven 4.0, while builds on the current Heaven 3.0 benchmark. It adds SSDO (scene-space dimensional occlusion), improved lens flare, a rendered starscape at night time, GPU temperature and clock monitoring, improved multi-GPU detection, and various bug fixes. The two should be released some time around Thursday (14/02).

Source: Phoronix

MSI 990FXA-GD80 Sets a New World Record of 8.37GHz with FX-8350

MSIs AM3+ mainboards support the latest AMD Vishera processors. In support of this fact is the recent overclocking record on the MSI 990FXA-GD80 which hit the 8.37 GHz mark with an FX-8350 processor, making it the fastest AMD FX-8350 in the world.

Additionally, the Z77 MPOWER and Big Bang-XPOWER II Mainboards have both made significant advancement in the HWBOT over-clocking leaderboards with MSI Lightning graphics cards. T0LSTY from Ukraine scored 18103 which puts him at the top of 3DMark 11 Performance Single Graphics Card scores with a Z77 MPOWER and R7970 Lightning and was the first contestant to break the 18,000 Marks barrier! T0LSTY, not satisfied with one record, also claimed the top spot in the Unigine Heaven DX11 single card benchmark.

Heaven DX11 Benchmark is Back with Version 3.0

UNIGINE Corp. released today an improved version (3.0) of its renown Heaven DX11 Benchmark based on its proprietary UNIGINE engine. Great looking as ever and containing many technical improvements, it now runs on Mac and supports for variety of new hardware, including extended support for multi-monitor configurations.

"It's very inspiring that more and more hardware testing professionals as well as tech enthusiasts find Heaven Benchmark useful. Our technology platform is constantly growing and we can bring Heaven Benchmark to new platforms and new hardware", said Denis Shergin, CEO of UNIGINE Corp.

HD 7970 Overclocked to 1.26 GHz: 28 nm Tech Really Stretches Its Legs

Welcome to the first TechPowerUp news post of 2012! Read on for a couple of impressive overclocking feats with the HD 7970 graphics card.

It looks like the new AMD Radeon HD 7970 could be a bit of a dark horse and a lot more potent than its stock specifications would suggest – excellent for creating a competitive graphics card market. The reviews at stock speeds show the flagship HD 7970 to be around 10-15% faster than NVIDIA's flagship GTX 580, which doesn't seem all that impressive since the GTX 580 has been on the market for over a year now. However, what the reviews haven't really shown, is what kind of an overclocking monster the HD 7970 is. It definitely looks like AMD could have easily beaten the GTX 580 by a much bigger margin than they did, had they wanted to and it makes one wonder why they didn't.

VR-Zone have spent the New Year weekend overclocking this beast, having reached a whopping 1.26 GHz core clock speed with their HD 7970 - and decent benchmark improvements to go with it. Also, with the fan at 100%, the card never got above a very comfortable 68 degrees centigrade while running Furmark, which is amazing considering how this test is specifically designed to heat a graphics card to the max - but please see the update at the bottom of the article. The stock cooler may be noisy, but it's certainly very effective: an excellent result which will prolong the working life of the card.

MSI and HIS Radeon HD 7970 Pictured, 3-way CrossFireX Tested

Until now, any site that has reviewed the Radeon HD 7970 has done so, using the sample AMD provided. There are very few CrossFire reviews out there, because it's simply too hard to get more than one AMD sample. 3-way and 4-way CrossFire reviews could be even rare, if such reviews even exist to begin with. This will change on the 9th of January, when AMD's add-in board partners are officially allowed to launch their Radeon HD 7970 graphics cards, when retailers can start selling these cards, and for reviewers to end up with enough cards to do CrossFire reviews.

Apparently British retailer Overclockers.uk got its stock of Radeon HD 7970 from at least two manufacturers, MSI and HIS. The site proudly showed off stacks of HIS and MSI Radeon HD 7970 graphics cards (first picture below). We certainly hope those are not all the cards it has in its inventory. OCUK did get a chance to pull three cards out of those boxes, and set up a 3-way CrossFireX setup using an Intel Core i7 "Sandy Bridge-E" system. At least one of those three cards is an MSI card, which isn't much different from the reference card than the MSI badge on the fan. Since the system is PCI-Express Gen 3.0 compliant, we can expect there to be close to no interface bottlenecks. And the guy who set that system up for a few snaps did what every enthusiast would do - run some benchmarks.

AMD Catalyst 11.10 WHQL Released

AMD today released its latest official version of Catalyst, a software suite that provides drivers for AMD/ATI Radeon graphics processors, A-Series APUs, 7-series and 8-series integrated graphics, and related system software. Catalyst 11.10 WHQL launched today has essentially the same change log as the 11.10 Preview 3 driver, except that it's WHQL-signed. Catalyst 11.10 WHQL is the driver to have when playing some of the latest titles such as Battlefield 3 and Rage.

Catalyst 11.10 WHQL brings in a few new features, too, such as support for 5x1 Eyefinity, with maximum resolution increased to 16000 x 16000 pixels on Radeon HD 6000 series GPUs, and in DirectX 11 applications, and improved Vision Engine Control Center / Catalyst Control Center applications (VECC is installed for A-Series APUs and Chipset IGPs, CCC is installed for discrete Radeon GPUs).

DOWNLOAD: AMD Catalyst 11.10 WHQL for Windows 7 and Vista 64-bit | Windows 7 and Vista 32-bit

EVGA Unveils GeForce GTX 460 2WIN Dual-GPU Graphics Card

It looks like EVGA isn't waiting for GeForce GTX 590, and is releasing its own dual-GPU graphics card to challenge Radeon HD 6990. Being released about 12 days ahead of GTX 590, EVGA's new GeForce GTX 460 2WIN could be a tad bit late to the market, considering it was first shown to the world back in January, at this year's CES event. The EVGA GTX 460 2WIN is a dual-GPU graphics card that uses two GeForce GTX 460 GPUs with 1 GB of memory each, for an SLI on a stick solution.

The EVGA GTX 460 2WIN (2WIN sounds like "twin"), uses clock speeds of 700 MHz core, and 900 MHz (3600 MHz GDDR5 effective) memory. Each GF104 chip has 336 CUDA cores enabled, totaling the CUDA core count to 672. The card is cooled by an in-house cooler by EVGA, it uses a large heatsink that is ventilated by three 80 mm fans. Power is drawn from two 8-pin PCI-E power connectors. Display outputs include three DVI and one mini-HDMI, you can run a 3-display NVIDIA 3D Vision Surround setup with just one of these cards, without needing a second one.

Unigine Releases Heaven 2.5 Benchmarking Suite, New Professional Edition

Unigine released the latest version of Unigine Heaven, one of the industry's first DirectX 11 compliant 3D graphics benchmark applications. Version 2.5 of the software expands its feature set a little, the product is also branched into two variants: a free "basic edition" that gives most of the product's functionality to consumers, overclockers, and gamers; and a paid "professional edition", that gives data-logging and specific-functionality to aid professionals such as analysts, and reviewers, priced at US $495. The professional variant is also backed by technical support.

As far as new features go, Heaven 2.5 introduced support for new DirectX 11 features such as indirect occlusion (SSDO) to simulate real-time global illumination, improved hardware support, improved quality of ambient occlusion, and a number of stability improvements that help maintain long sessions of benchmarking. It also added a new help file, and a snappier installer. The professional edition includes command line automation support, data-logging in CSV format, stress-testing, a commercial use license, and technical support. The professional edition can be purchased from here.

DOWNLOAD: Unigine Heaven 2.5 Basic Edition

ATI Catalyst 10.5 WHQL Driver Suite Released

AMD today rolled out this month's release of its ATI Catalyst software, which provides drivers and essential system software for ATI Radeon graphics processors, AMD chipsets, and other ATI multimedia products. The WHQL-signed version 10.5 brings a few feature updates, along with a list of important bug fixes. To begin with, Catalyst 10.5 gives 120 Hz display support for ATI Radeon HD 4000 and HD 3000 series graphics processors (helpful with stereoscopic 3D), and ATI Overdrive enhancements which allow full control over ATI Radeon GPUs that are connected to multiple displays, eliminating a limitation.

Following on with Catalyst 10.4, Battlefield: Bad Company 2 doesn't take unusually long to load maps, while a stability issues connected to IL-2 Sturmovik: 1946, Mass Effect 2 (where display goes blank if you switch to desktop in the middle of a game), Empire: Total War, Napoleon: Total War got a fix which allows AA settings with Volumetric effects, while Unigine Heaven 2.0 in wireframe mode doesn't crash. For more details, refer to the release notes document.

DOWNLOAD: ATI Catalyst 10.5 WHQL for Windows 7/Vista 64-bit, Windows 7/Vista 32-bit, Windows XP 32-bit, Windows XP 64-bit

Unigine Releases Heaven 2.1 Benchmark

Unigine launched version 2.1 of its Heaven cross-platform, cross-API 3D Graphics benchmark. The popular free benchmark application uses the builds on Unigine Heaven 2.0, with two major changes. To begin with, it supports OpenGL 4.0, a 3D graphics API that is technologically comparable to DirectX 11. Heaven 2.1 uses all of the latest features of GL 4.0, including hardware tessellation support. The second major change is the support for stereoscopic 3D, including support for several stereo 3D viewing modes such as Analygraph, separate images, 3D Vision, and iZ3D. Several other stability fixes were also introduced.
DOWNLOAD: Unigine Heaven 2.1

Unigine Releases Version 2 of Heaven Benchmark

Barely a week ahead of NVIDIA's launch of DirectX 11 compliant graphics cards, Unigine released version 2 of its Heaven benchmark. Unigine Heaven is a multi API 3D performance benchmark which supports DirectX 9, 10, 11, and OpenGL, but is popular for its DirectX 11 mode which demonstrates the API's hardware tessellation capabilities using tessellation-intensive scenes. Version 2 expands on the original with even more geometry-heavy tests, even more objects, more dynamic lights, and physics-driven flags, along with the original's complete use of hardware tessellation features, advanced screen-space ambient occlusion (SSAO), dynamic sky and daytime lighting, and interactive modes. The new version also lets you set the degree of tessellation using "extreme" and "moderate" modes. The application is available free of charge.

DOWNLOAD: Unigine Heaven 2.0
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