Sapphire R9 390 Nitro 8 GB Review 67

Sapphire R9 390 Nitro 8 GB Review

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AMD's approach to new generations of graphics processors has been different for the past two generations. The Radeon R9 200 series initially saw the introduction of just one silicon codenamed "Hawaii" which drove the company's previous flagship R9 290 series, while the rest of the lineup saw a cascading re-badging from the previous generation. AMD's previous generation flagship, the HD 7900 series, went on to become the performance-segment R9 280 series, and so on, and the performance-segment "Tonga" silicon was added afterward. The story is predictable even today.

With this generation, there is essentially one new silicon, the HBM-equipped "Fiji" that will eventually drive up to five products from AMD. The previous-generation flagship silicon "Hawaii" now drives AMD's performance-segment products, the Radeon R9 390X and R9 390 Non-X.

The Radeon R9 390 is based on the "Hawaii" silicon (now referred to as "Grenada" without any silicon changes) and features the same core-configuration as the R9 290. The standard memory amount has been doubled to 8 GB across the board and clock speeds are increased from 950 MHz to 1000 MHz on the core and from 5.00 Gbps to 6.00 Gbps on the memory.

The Sapphire R9 390 Nitro comes with a GPU overclock of 40 MHz out of the box, while memory has remained at the AMD default of 1500 MHz. With a price of $340, the card is more expensive than other R9 390s from other manufacturers, sitting at a price point that competes with many high-end GTX 970 cards.

Radeon R9 390 Market Segment Analysis
R9 280X
R9 380X
GTX 780
R9 290
R9 390
R9 390 Nitro
GTX 970
R9 290X
R9 390X
GTX 780 Ti
GTX 980
Shader Units20482048230425602560256016642816281628802048
Graphics ProcessorTahitiTongaGK110HawaiiHawaiiHawaiiGM204HawaiiHawaiiGK110GM204
Memory Size2 GB4 GB3 GB4 GB8 GB8 GB4 GB4 GB8 GB3 GB4 GB
Memory Bus Width384 bit256 bit384 bit512 bit512 bit512 bit256 bit512 bit512 bit384 bit256 bit
Core Clock1000 MHz970 MHz863 MHz+947 MHz1000 MHz1040 MHz1051 MHz+1000 MHz1050 MHz876 MHz+1126 MHz+
Memory Clock1500 MHz1425 MHz1502 MHz1250 MHz1500 MHz1500 MHz1750 MHz1250 MHz1500 MHz1750 MHz1750 MHz
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