Friday, August 4th 2017

AMD RX Vega Mining Performance Reportedly Doubled With Driver Updates

Disclaimer: take this post with a bucket of salt. However, the information here, if true, could heavily impact AMD's RX Vega cards' stock at launch and in the subsequent days, so, we're sharing this so our readers can decide on whether they want to pull the trigger for a Vega card at launch, as soon as possible, or risk what would seem like the equivalent of a mining Black Friday crowd gobbling up AMD's RX Vega models' stock. Remember that AMD has already justified delays for increased stock so as to limit the impact of miners on the available supply.

The information has been put out by two different sources already. The first source we encountered (and which has been covered by some media outlets solo) has been one post from one of OC UK's staff, Gibbo, who in a forum post, said "Seems the hash rate on VEGA is 70-100 per card, which is insanely good. Trying to devise some kind of plan so gamers can get them at MSRP without the miners wiping all the stock out within 5 minutes of product going live."
The fact that a staffer from OC UK is actually looking for ways to prevent miners from wiping the stock speaks more to the credence of the information than the "70-100 hash rate" claim. Apparently, this information was conveyed to Gibbo from an AMD AIB partner, who remains unknown at time of writing. This information has already been sort of confirmed by a second source, coming out of Videocardz's Why Cry. In a post, the editor reported how he already had come in possession of similar information through his sources, who put the hash rate of RX Vega close to double that of the Frontier Edition's original hash rate, which was ~30 MH/s in Ethereum mining. This means the hash rate could be ~60 mark, which is still close to OC UK's Gibbo's reference to a "70-100" hash rate. This increase in hash rate was apparently indirectly enabled by updated driver features for the RX Vega cards. Apparently, these were included in the drivers to improve features and gaming performance - which also indirectly resulted in increased mining capabilities.

We had already covered in our Vega Architecture Technical Overview article that AMD's Vega NGCU computation capabilities were bolstered through added support for over 40 new ISA instructions, which result in increased IPC over Polaris - and which were also mentioned by VSG at the time as being "very relevant for GPU mining."
Adding to this story is the fact that recent optimizations from a Reddit user to a Monero mining program and an underclock to 1.3 GHz have brought the Frontier Edition's mining hashrates to around 1.16 kH/s - 34% faster than a GeForce GTX 1080 Ti (around 0.76 kH/s according to Nicehash), and 43% faster than a single Radeon RX 580 8 GB. This means that the $999 Frontier Edition currently stands at double the mining performance of the GTX 1080 on Monero - and the gaming RX Vega, with its $499 price-tag, should follow suit. And these are optimizations achieved by a single user, for a cryptocurrency that is admittedly not as popular as Ethereum or others. But increasing levels of performance in some mining algorithms really does leave the door open for exploration of improved speeds on others, and you can rest assured that miners will, at the very least, attempt to achieve these optimizations in other cryptocurrencies.
All in all, if true, these reports lend credence to AMD's take on the RX Vega delays for stock build-up. And the situation seems to be less straightforward than one might hope when it comes to disabling these instructions, or only enabling them at a latter date, after gamers had already had some time to purchase their desired cards. Because these driver-level updates were apparently done with the intent to bolster gaming performance, I believe it's safe to assume AMD can't easily neuter the mining improvements without putting the increased gaming performance at risk as well. Let's see how this pans out, but consider yourselves at least warned - the RX Vega may see much reduced stock and increased pricing throughout if this scenario pans out. in the meantime, those Radeon Packs with both their shortcomings and opportunities are looking like an increasingly interesting way to get ahold of one of AMD's latest... Sources: OCUK's Gibbo, Videocardz, NAG, Dirtbagdh @ Reddit
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216 Comments on AMD RX Vega Mining Performance Reportedly Doubled With Driver Updates

#176
dorsetknob
"YOUR RMA REQUEST IS CON-REFUSED"
"the54thvoid said:
EDIT: like your power company surcharge idea, it would be justifiable for companies to charge you a secondary business rate for electricity usage. After all, if you are consuming 5 households worth of energy and that trend increased, we'd be more prone to blackouts in vulnerable times. People need to release fast that energy isn't infinte.
Energy Company is more lightly to report you to police (For A Pre Dawn Vist with the Sledge Hammer front door key ) as you would then be a suspect for Cannabis Farming/Home Growing
Now Would that be" POT hole mining":roll:o_O:laugh:
Posted on Reply
#177
Th3pwn3r
"dorsetknob said:
Energy Company is more lightly to report you to police (For A Pre Dawn Vist with the Sledge Hammer front door key ) as you would then be a suspect for Cannabis Farming/Home Growing
Now Would that be" POT hole mining":roll:o_O:laugh:
I'm guessing he doesn't know about renewable energies. Here in Illinois we're going to have LOTS of solar arrays that will be pumping out some serious juice within the next few years. There are also wind farms...solar is basically free energy and the costs are getting a lot better.
Posted on Reply
#178
the54thvoid
"Th3pwn3r said:
I'm guessing he doesn't know about renewable energies. Here in Illinois we're going to have LOTS of solar arrays that will be pumping out some serious juice within the next few years. There are also wind farms...solar is basically free energy and the costs are getting a lot better.
lol, I know enough about renewables, what you dont know is in the UK the energy companies pass on the ful costs to develop them. The UK is not like the US. Our version of a free market is pretty much, don't pass on the savings, charge extra for the R&D. Our bills are rising over here (even before brexit) even though energy wholesale costs have risen and fallen etc.

Our govt plain sucks at improving business to help all. So renewables, ironically, end up adding a tariff onto our bills as the govt imposes CO2 emission chrages on coal and gas etc. And solar is not free. The R&D plus manufacture and actual solar efficiency is pretty bad. And where i live it's very green and very cloudy - no droughts, very little sun.
Posted on Reply
#179
notb
"Th3pwn3r said:
I'm guessing he doesn't know about renewable energies. Here in Illinois we're going to have LOTS of solar arrays that will be pumping out some serious juice within the next few years. There are also wind farms...solar is basically free energy and the costs are getting a lot better.
OH MY GOD.
First we had "mining is free money" and now "solar is free energy". Where do you guys come from? :o
Where is this going? What's next? Fridge contains free food?

Why would anyone install a solar panel in Illinois? I checked some figures on sun exposure and it should be similar to central Europe - that is: rubbish. Solar panels in Europe are subsidized, because they can hardly make a profit.
Posted on Reply
#180
TheGuruStud
"notb said:
OH MY GOD.
First we had "mining is free money" and now "solar is free energy". Where do you guys come from? :eek:
Where is this going? What's next? Fridge contains free food?

Why would anyone install a solar panel in Illinois? I checked some figures on sun exposure and it should be similar to central Europe - that is: rubbish. Solar panels in Europe are subsidized, because they can hardly make a profit.
Don't worry, after everyone installs them, IL will pass a high tax on owning solar panels and give half the money to the electric companies (the rest into their wallets).
Posted on Reply
#181
cdawall
where the hell are my stars
"notb said:
OH MY GOD.
First we had "mining is free money" and now "solar is free energy". Where do you guys come from? :eek:
Where is this going? What's next? Fridge contains free food?

Why would anyone install a solar panel in Illinois? I checked some figures on sun exposure and it should be similar to central Europe - that is: rubbish. Solar panels in Europe are subsidized, because they can hardly make a profit.
Mining is free money :roll: What is the saying "if you love your job you never work a day in your life"?
Posted on Reply
#182
justanother gamer
"RejZoR said:
Well, with miners already drooling over VEGA for their mining garbage, it's not looking good. I'm frankly still interested in RX Vega, I'm just afraid it won't be obtainable or the prices will be ridiculous. It's even more of a problem because I have to wait for september because that's when aftermarket Vega's arrive. Blower just isn't worth it and AiO version might be priced a bit too high. But I think they'll be easier obtainable now than in september.
Vya the funny thing is i went with lower cards. and boards- making due until i bought the Ryzen 7 1800x i had been using a I7-930 cpu on gigabyte boards and a amd R9 270-- which i'm currently using still on this R71800x, Intel and Nvidia both have been Screwing us over with Incremental 3-8% increases in CPU and graphics.. and charging inflated prices. i haven't had a single prob with this CPU took the time to put on water cooling- my first ever
but after reading thru this and other forums and shoveling out the crap and whining. I look at it this way for the price of a 1080 ti water cooled is $1200 or so a amd vega 64 Liq is $700 the same results slightly lower when you look at benchmarks, all the review and testing. well im ok with that at this point.. if your like me using a r9-270x or such card then this is a good deal if your using a card bought in the last year or 2 and price is a contention then Just Make due until it stabilizes. just like Monitors the price is crazy - bought a 43" Vizio 4k tv and use it as a monitor 120htz, 2160p we all make choices to get there.
looking at the price of the FE edition being 1500.00 water cooled then the Vega64 falls in line with the price. Asus msi and others wont be coming out with water cooled versions until mid sep at the earliest. the stock air cooled versions prob earliest last week august Asus is making a limited edition vega 64 x2 ie 2 cards in one water cooled im guessing around $1680+ and over 600 watts :)

anyway this forum is entertaining to read.
Posted on Reply
#183
cdawall
where the hell are my stars
"justanother gamer said:
Vya the funny thing is i went with lower cards. and boards- making due until i bought the Ryzen 7 1800x i had been using a I7-930 cpu on gigabyte boards and a amd R9 270-- which i'm currently using still on this R71800x, Intel and Nvidia both have been Screwing us over with Incremental 3-8% increases in CPU and graphics.. and charging inflated prices. i haven't had a single prob with this CPU took the time to put on water cooling- my first ever
but after reading thru this and other forums and shoveling out the crap and whining. I look at it this way for the price of a 1080 ti water cooled is $1200 or so a amd vega 64 Liq is $700 the same results slightly lower when you look at benchmarks, all the review and testing. well im ok with that at this point.. if your like me using a r9-270x or such card then this is a good deal if your using a card bought in the last year or 2 and price is a contention then Just Make due until it stabilizes. just like Monitors the price is crazy - bought a 43" Vizio 4k tv and use it as a monitor 120htz, 2160p we all make choices to get there.
looking at the price of the FE edition being 1500.00 water cooled then the Vega64 falls in line with the price. Asus msi and others wont be coming out with water cooled versions until mid sep at the earliest. the stock air cooled versions prob earliest last week august Asus is making a limited edition vega 64 x2 ie 2 cards in one water cooled im guessing around $1680+ and over 600 watts :)

anyway this forum is entertaining to read.
The 1080ti from 980ti is a massive perfirmance jump...I don't know what 8% you are looking at
Posted on Reply
#184
R-T-B
"dorsetknob said:
Energy Company is more lightly to report you to police (For A Pre Dawn Vist with the Sledge Hammer front door key ) as you would then be a suspect for Cannabis Farming/Home Growing
Now Would that be" POT hole mining":roll:o_O:laugh:
Ironic that the cheap power is in one of the pot legal states then, eh?
Posted on Reply
#185
RejZoR
"cdawall said:
The 1080ti from 980ti is a massive perfirmance jump...I don't know what 8% you are looking at
Just a jump between GTX 1080 and GTX 1080Ti is greater than 8%...
Posted on Reply
#186
notb
"justanother gamer said:

anyway this forum is entertaining to read.
But you comment wasn't. Maybe it would be easier if it was in English...

NVIDIA provides quite massive jumps.
For the last 3 generations the *70 model was at least matching previous flagship. They're offering solid +30% in most segments and generations are 2 years apart at most.
And don't you worry about Intel. They've concentrated on other things lately and got slightly surprised by Zen, but will be back to leading CPU efficiency sooner than you think. It's inevitable.

AMD has been making GPUs for a decade now and they still can't match the quality ATI offered. Such a pity this great company was taken over by such a management tragedy. :-(
Posted on Reply
#187
RejZoR
Tragedy? HD6000 was first AMD generation and it wasn't bad at all. HD7000 was the first actually designed entirely by AMD and it introduced GCN which is still beating today to some degree. It is one of the most highly praised Radeon cards of all times. Had one and it was pretty awesome indeed. R9 290X, despite everyone whining about it was actually very powerful card. So powerful they could later just rebrand it as R9 390X and go against NVIDIA's brand new GTX 980. Successfully. Polaris, despite all the whining again proved to be perfectly capable card. Minimal performance gains over R9 290X, but huge in efficiency. R9 Fury is probably a bit meh, but still capable card, but RX Vega, although not the speed king seems like decent card as well. The last generations after R9 290X aren't out of this world spectacular, made with tradeoffs, but calling them bad would be disingenuous.
Posted on Reply
#188
Vya Domus
I wonder how many people still live with the false impression that everything about ATI just sort of vanished when they were acquired by AMD.
Posted on Reply
#189
cdawall
where the hell are my stars
"RejZoR said:
Tragedy? HD6000 was first AMD generation and it wasn't bad at all. HD7000 was the first actually designed entirely by AMD and it introduced GCN which is still beating today to some degree. It is one of the most highly praised Radeon cards of all times. Had one and it was pretty awesome indeed. R9 290X, despite everyone whining about it was actually very powerful card. So powerful they could later just rebrand it as R9 390X and go against NVIDIA's brand new GTX 980. Successfully. Polaris, despite all the whining again proved to be perfectly capable card. Minimal performance gains over R9 290X, but huge in efficiency. R9 Fury is probably a bit meh, but still capable card, but RX Vega, although not the speed king seems like decent card as well. The last generations after R9 290X aren't out of this world spectacular, made with tradeoffs, but calling them bad would be disingenuous.
AMD acquired ATi in 2009 the HD2k series was the first AMD branded cards...
Posted on Reply
#190
RejZoR
That can't be right. Neither Wiki agrees with that and neither my memory. If that was true, my HD4850 (Sapphire, reference blower) and HD5850 (MSI reference blower) should be AMD branded (they came after HD2000 series, clearly). And they weren't for sure. They were both branded ATi. Even the HD6950 that I had I think was still ATi branded even though they were already stamping AMD on boxes (not on actual cards afaik). I just can't find any images of it. It was Sapphire HD6950 2GB Silent Efficiency with single fan in the middle of rectangular shroud. Similar to HD6950 Flex, but I know my model wasn't Flex...
Posted on Reply
#191
Vya Domus
The branding change did not coincide with the moment they were bought by AMD. 6xxx series was the first AMD branded GPU series but by then ATI was already part of AMD for quite some time. 6xxx was TeraScale.
Posted on Reply
#192
Prince Valiant
"RejZoR said:
Tragedy? HD6000 was first AMD generation and it wasn't bad at all. HD7000 was the first actually designed entirely by AMD and it introduced GCN which is still beating today to some degree. It is one of the most highly praised Radeon cards of all times. Had one and it was pretty awesome indeed. R9 290X, despite everyone whining about it was actually very powerful card. So powerful they could later just rebrand it as R9 390X and go against NVIDIA's brand new GTX 980. Successfully. Polaris, despite all the whining again proved to be perfectly capable card. Minimal performance gains over R9 290X, but huge in efficiency. R9 Fury is probably a bit meh, but still capable card, but RX Vega, although not the speed king seems like decent card as well. The last generations after R9 290X aren't out of this world spectacular, made with tradeoffs, but calling them bad would be disingenuous.
I've always thought the problem with the 290 is it took too long to get out the door. I recommended AMD cards only to watch people ignore me and pay more for worse performance. The GTX 1K series is a significant gap but the damage was already done.
Posted on Reply
#193
cdawall
where the hell are my stars
"RejZoR said:
That can't be right. Neither Wiki agrees with that and neither my memory. If that was true, my HD4850 (Sapphire, reference blower) and HD5850 (MSI reference blower) should be AMD branded (they came after HD2000 series, clearly). And they weren't for sure. They were both branded ATi. Even the HD6950 that I had I think was still ATi branded even though they were already stamping AMD on boxes (not on actual cards afaik). I just can't find any images of it. It was Sapphire HD6950 2GB Silent Efficiency with single fan in the middle of rectangular shroud. Similar to HD6950 Flex, but I know my model wasn't Flex...
I apoligize I typod 2006 ATi became part of AMD. Just because it still said ATi on the logo doesn't make it any less of an AMD product.
Posted on Reply
#194
dozenfury
Energy certainly isn't free and I haven't heard much of solar in Illinois, but there have been many large wind turbine farms in Illinois for years. There are ones with 100+ turbines just outside Peoria and close to 100 near DeKalb, and many others. Combined with cheap natural gas, thankfully energy is relatively very cheap here (.065 a kw/hr).

Unless you're running a ton of cards (like 20+) I doubt it would be a blip on a energy company radar. 1 plasma tv uses as many watts as 2 Vegas. I've also filled pools before which used thousands of extra gallons of water and I didn't have police at my door.
Posted on Reply
#195
R0H1T
"dozenfury said:
Energy certainly isn't free and I haven't heard much of solar in Illinois, but there have been many large wind turbine farms in Illinois for years. There are ones with 100+ turbines just outside Peoria and close to 100 near DeKalb, and many others. Combined with cheap natural gas, thankfully energy is relatively very cheap here (.065 a kw/hr).

Unless you're running a ton of cards (like 20+) I doubt it would be a blip on a energy company radar. 1 plasma tv uses as many watts as 2 Vegas. I've also filled pools before which used thousands of extra gallons of water and I didn't have police at my door.
Energy isn;t totally free, ever. Anyone imagining it is living in cuckoo land, there are maintenance, material, personnel costs involved in using renewables.
Unless you can eliminate all 3, basically free installation & free everything afterwards, there will be certain costs associated with solar, wind et al forever.
Posted on Reply
#196
notb
"Vya Domus said:
I wonder how many people still live with the false impression that everything about ATI just sort of vanished when they were acquired by AMD.
Of course nothing vanished (instantly). But the management changed and that's what I mentioned. The key difference is that ATI was GPU-centric, so they had to work hard to survive. For AMD this whole branch is just a side-project. Partly to make APUs, partly to get a strong position in consoles. IMO the idea of GPU as a device made for gaming on PCs got a much lower priority after the takeover.

Few years later AMD's consumer GPUs are better for mining and general calculations than they are for games. And hardly anyone cares about their HPC lineup, so we don't know if it's good for games...

"dozenfury said:
Energy certainly isn't free and I haven't heard much of solar in Illinois, but there have been many large wind turbine farms in Illinois for years. There are ones with 100+ turbines just outside Peoria and close to 100 near DeKalb, and many others. Combined with cheap natural gas, thankfully energy is relatively very cheap here (.065 a kw/hr).
Solar-wise Illinois is rubbish - no point discussing that further. :-)

As for wind... Generally speaking, Illinois is quite far from the central US area known for strong winds. Yet, there are quite many wind farms.
Is wind energy subsidized by the state? Or maybe there's some microclimat that helps? Lakes?
Potential: http://www.tindallcorp.com/site/user/images/USA_Wind_Map_for_Tindall_Transp_2.jpg
Installations: https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/d/dd/Distribution_of_wind_power_plants_in_U.S.png
Posted on Reply
#197
SPLWF
I know how to get back at miners, well a miner. I'm staying up late Sunday night, going to order a Vega from Amazon and another one from my local Microcenters as pickup. I'll sell both for Triple the price.
Posted on Reply
#198
cdawall
where the hell are my stars
"SPLWF said:
I know how to get back at miners, well a miner. I'm staying up late Sunday night, going to order a Vega from Amazon and another one from my local Microcenters as pickup. I'll sell both for Triple the price.
You do understand the market isn't hot enough to spend $1500 on a gpu? You know how I know that? Vega is out for that price already.
Posted on Reply
#199
SPLWF
"cdawall said:
You do understand the market isn't hot enough to spend $1500 on a gpu? You know how I know that? Vega is out for that price already.
You know what I mean, if it's worth $399 MSRP then I'll sell it for $650. Triple was just an exaggeration :)
Posted on Reply
#200
cdawall
where the hell are my stars
"SPLWF said:
You know what I mean, if it's worth $399 MSRP then I'll sell it for $650. Triple was just an exaggeration :)
That's not really getting back at anyone. 2 cards is small potatoes. The guys you are talking about are renting aircraft to fly 60 thousand gpus
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