For our final bit of AMD news today, in a bit of an unusual move AMD has informally announced a new Radeon HD 7750.

The new 7750, which will not be replacing the old 7750, is a higher clocked, higher power consuming Cape Verde card, which takes advantage of the fact that AMD had to underclock the 7750 for power consumption purposes. As you may recall the original 7750 was designed to be the most powerful 75W card on the market – the limit for power from a PCIe slot – and to get there AMD had to clock it at just 800MHz. In reality Cape Verde is such a small GPU that it can easily hit higher clocks, but since 7750 was already approaching the limits of a PCIe slot, there wasn’t much headroom to work with.

AMD GPU Specification Comparison
  AMD Radeon HD 7770 AMD Radeon HD 7750 (New) AMD Radeon HD 7750 (Old)
Stream Processors 640 512 512
Texture Units 40 32 32
ROPs 16 16 16
Core Clock 1000MHz 900MHz 800MHz
Memory Clock 4.5GHz GDDR5 4.5GHz GDDR5 4.5GHz GDDR5
Memory Bus Width 128-bit 128-bit 128-bit
Frame Buffer 1GB 1GB 1GB
FP64 1/16 1/16 1/16
Transistor Count 1.5B 1.5B 1.5B
PowerTune Limit 100W 83W 75W
Manufacturing Process TSMC 28nm TSMC 28nm TSMC 28nm
Architecture GCN GCN GCN
Price Point $159 $109+ $109

As such AMD has minted a new 7750 reference design for their partners to work with. The new 7750 (which we’re dubbing the 7750-900) utilizes the exact same Cape Verde GPUs, but is clocked at 900MHz rather than 800MHz, which given AMD’s near-linear performance scaling should put performance at around 10-12% higher than the original 7750-800. On the hardware side of things the real change is that in order to achieve this AMD had to increase the amount of power the card could be supplied with, which means they had to give up on only drawing power from the PCIe slot and to start using external power too. The new 7750 reference board – which we’re told is very similar to the 7770 reference board – is a longer board that features a PCIe power socket in order to provide that additional power. Accordingly the PowerTune limit/TDP has risen from 75W to 83W.

And to be clear here, the new 7750 is as official as any other AMD defined product; this is not a factory overclocked part where partners are technically running a part out of spec. AMD will be qualifying all 7750 GPUs to run at both 800MHz and 900Mhz, and partners will have the option of using their 7750 GPUs to either build the 7750-800 or the 7750-900 based on their market needs. For that reason both models will continue to exist on the market.

Unfortunately this also means that they will be sharing the same name. AMD has told us that they don’t want to make their product stack more confusing by adding to it, which is understandable. At the same time however this is the textbook case for a new SKU; 7751, 7755, or 7760 would all be appropriate choices and far less confusing since the 7750-800 is a unique card due to its power requirements. As it stands the only way to tell apart the 7750-800 and 7770-900 is going to be based on clockspeed.

XFX Radeon HD 7750 BEDD. Image Courtesy Newegg

As for pricing and availability, the 7750-900 is available now, while pricing is still in flux. XFX’s Radeon HD 7750 Black Edition Double Dissipation is the first 7750-900 card on the market, and other partners will be putting out their own 7750-900 cards soon. We don’t have a clear shot of the front of the PCB, but Newegg has posted a shot of the far edge, where we can clearly see the PCIe power socket and part of the PCB, which also makes it clear that this isn’t a 7770 PCB. AMD’s official MSRP for the 7750-900 is the same as the 7750-800 at $109, while XFX is charging $115 after rebate for their card. Given the higher performance of the 7750-900 we don’t have a great deal of confidence that AMD’s partners will actually roll it out for $109, but given the fact that the 7770 is down to $129 they may not have a lot of choice.

Finally, the fact that AMD has chosen to launch a higher clocked 7750 at this point in time is by no means a coincidence. With the impending release of desktop GK107 cards – the OEM-only GK107 based GT 640 was announced back in April – this is an obvious counter-launch. AMD would appear to be expecting GT 640 pricing to be near the 7750, which would explain the need for a higher clocked card at the same price. We’ll be looking at 7750-900 performance next week when our reference sample arrives, so we should be better able to quantify performance and power then, along with what NVIDIA’s performance would need to be if indeed they’re targeting 7750 pricing.

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  • Soulkeeper - Friday, June 1, 2012 - link

    yeah, this makes little sense.
  • FactoryFactory - Friday, June 1, 2012 - link

    Don't PCIe 3.0 slots offer up to 150W of power? So couldn't the card still run without aux power on a PCIe 3.0 (or 2.1) compatible motherboard?
  • jeremyshaw - Friday, June 1, 2012 - link

    PCIe 2.0 offered more than 75W. But for the sake of compatibility, the old PCIe 1.x power figures are used. Besides.... I don't believe the target market of the HD7700 line is the kind that upgrades their mobos every CPU gen, either. It's not as slow as the GT520/HD6450 target group, but still...

    Not to mention, some PCIe 2.0 mobos (remembering eVGA and some others, here) couldn't supply even 75W per PCIex16 slot (though this only mattered for people running tri/quad setups, apparently).
  • Jumangi - Friday, June 1, 2012 - link

    AMD also announced they are letting the 7770's be clocked at 1.1 ghz by default now.
  • Ryan Smith - Saturday, June 2, 2012 - link

    Those are just factory overclocks; it's not a new product, nor something partners couldn't already do.
  • EnerJi - Friday, June 1, 2012 - link

    Absurd, just totally absurd. ATI and Nvidia have jumped the shark when it comes to naming practices... It's deceptive and anti-consumer. They should be ashamed. If I had a reasonable alternative, I would boycott their products.
  • piroroadkill - Saturday, June 2, 2012 - link

    What, because they're creating an option that increases performance at NO EXTRA COST

    Why are people so stuck up?
  • MrSpadge - Saturday, June 2, 2012 - link

    Because people see the benchmarks of the faster card, shop for it and end up with a slower model unintentionally.
  • Oxford Guy - Saturday, June 2, 2012 - link

    Exactly. It's a bait and switch tactic.
  • just4U - Monday, June 4, 2012 - link

    This might be true if the better higher clocked card was coming out first but it's the opposite. It's coming out after the original and with more performance. The only thing that might trip a buyer up here is having to use a power connector (which they should have anyway on monder power supplies)

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