Rumors aside, after AMD’s unexpected preview of their 2013 GPU plans back at the start of this year the company has been mum-as-usual on the matter of their future GPUs. At the time AMD announced that they would have a new GPU microarchitecture by the end of this year, and as 2013 slowly winds down the launch of that new microarchitecture draws near. Normally in these situations we would see AMD continue to stay quiet until they’re ready to fully unveil their products, but with the launch of that new microarchitecture already confirmed, AMD has unexpectedly unveiled a couple of details about one of their forthcoming GPUs in an interview with Forbes.

Interviewing the Corporate VP & GM of AMD’s Graphics Business Unit, Matt Skynner, Matt offered up a couple of basic but important details about AMD’s future plans. First and foremost, AMD’s next enthusiast GPU – already strongly implied to be the launch vehicle for their forthcoming microarchitecture – will be a 28nm product. Explaining why, Matt specifically states that “at 28nm for an enthusiast GPU, we can achieve higher clock speeds and higher absolute performance.” With traditional AMD GPU fab TSMC still ramping up for 20nm anyhow this doesn’t come as a great surprise, but it does put to rest any rumors of a 20nm product launch one way or another.

More interesting perhaps is that Matt also gave Forbes a ballpark number on the die size of their new GPU: GK110 is still 30% bigger than the new GPU, or inverted the new GPU is 23% smaller than GK110. While AMD’s small die strategy has been dead for some time, the company has still shied away from large GPUs for various reasons, their largest GPU since the ill-fated R600 (HD 2900 XT) being the 389mm2 Cayman GPU at the heart of the HD 6900 series. 23% smaller than GK110 would put the die size of AMD’s future GPU at around 425mm2, making it slightly larger than Cayman, or roughly the same size as R600. These are ballpark figures of course, so we’ll know more once the GPU formally launches, including of course how well that large die and new microarchitecture translate into performance.

The full interview can be found over at Forbes. Along with teasing AMD’s next enthusiast GPU, Matt also briefly discusses AMD’s software/driver plans, game bundling, the Radeon HD 7990, and more.

Source: Forbes (via Beyond3D)

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  • dylan522p - Wednesday, September 18, 2013 - link

    NDA. They can't say shit.
  • imaheadcase - Thursday, September 19, 2013 - link

    Yes they can, they have said before if they have one. NDA is for performance related stuff.
  • JlHADJOE - Thursday, September 19, 2013 - link

    An NDA can be for anything. It really depends only on the two parties involved.
  • surt - Sunday, September 22, 2013 - link

    However, after the first time they say that, the next NDA says you can't disclose the existence of the NDA.
  • MrSpadge - Wednesday, September 18, 2013 - link

    Because it's neither a launch nor an official introduction yet, just a small tease in some interview.

    And die size does count, because it determines how low the price of a chip can be. If AMD offers similar performance with a smaller chip than nVidia expect some agressive pricing. The other way around - not.
  • haukionkannel - Wednesday, September 18, 2013 - link

    Yep. we don't actually need another 1000$ GPU to compete with Titan. So if this is about same size as 7970, then the price will be guite the same when 7970 did come out 500-600$ Dependin on how good it will be compared to Nvidia 780.
  • eanazag - Wednesday, September 18, 2013 - link

    Die size and process technology are important to Forbes readers (investors). If it was to be a GPU performance talk, why go to Forbes?
    That being said; smaller die likely means less power and heat which is a good thing to me for a GPU. AMD just needs to break even on performance or even be negative in 3% or less range with the 780 and it's a win. It could end up being a play like Nvidia did previously by dropping the compute strength down.

    No matter what. It is time to release something even if it is just a little better than 7970. I can't stand rebranding. It irks me.
  • Ammaross - Wednesday, September 18, 2013 - link

    @HighTech4US: "Who cares about die size it performance that counts."

    Because die size is directly related to chip costs, and thus, retail pricing.
  • Rick83 - Thursday, September 19, 2013 - link

    Well, not really. Pricing is mostly determined by how many units you can sell, with the hope of recouping R&D and making good profits.

    The influence of die size is that you can have more chips ready for a launch in less time, as the time to process a wafer is roughly constant, and especially on a fresh process, smaller dies means more dies that aren't broken (of course by disabling broken bits on a GPU you can relatively cheaply reduce the impact on the total number of functioning dies).

    But yeah, at this point die size isn't such a critical metric with regards to cost. On the other hand, it is an interesting metric with regard to total current through the chip, which can be larger, the larger your chip is. Current correlates with power requirements and output, so it's an interesting measure in that aspect.

    Just look at GK104 for an example of small die does not equal low retail pricing.
  • B3an - Wednesday, September 18, 2013 - link

    Maybe my next upgrade... I've often got the latest GPU's but lately i've stuck with two 6970's because even at 2560x1600 they run almost everything maxed out still, because almost everything is a console port these days.

    This isn't a good thing to me though. I want something to push my system and want amazing graphics, so if it means i have to upgrade my GPU's then so be it. Hopefully the new consoles will push PC graphics and texture resolutions up significantly. I hope these new AMD cards have 4GB RAM.

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