While the fanboys in AMD camp are asking themselves how the company will react to superior benchmark results of competing Kepler-based graphics cards, the company is working in silence on improving the performance of its flagship discrete parts.
According to a report on the Australian Atomic PC magazine, AMD will boost the reference clock from 925MHz to a round figure of 1GHz. The reason why the original 7970 did not operate at 1GHz, i.e. "GHz Edition" (as AMD touted in its marketing materials for 7870 and 7770) was – engineering sample ASICs required too much operating power for qualification within the 230W TDP.
The first 28nm Tahiti silicon required quite a significant bump in voltage in order to achieve the 1000 MHz clock, and AMD decided to launch the board clocked 45 MHz faster than its predecessor, HD 6970. However, later bins of production silicon got better and we've grown accustomed to seeing the products from AIC partners (board vendors) clocked at 1.0, 1.05, 1.15 GHz. We've also seen factory overclocks in the 1.3GHz range, making a viable competitor for NVIDIA's GeForce GTX 680, which is currently out of stock everywhere since launch.
But the preparations aren't stopping there, as the improved silicon will also power the Radeon HD 7990, a dual-GPU board codenamed New Zealand that competes with the (gorgeous looking) GTX 690. AMD is expected to release the board in time for Computex Taipei 2012 in early June, with retail availability to follow in mid-June. The Radeon HD 7990 would keep the clock as close to the original 925MHz of Tahiti XT (don't be too surprised to see an Über mode bios switch like on HD 6990),
Furthermore, early next week the Sunnyvale based outfit will flog the power sipping Trinity APUs, i.e. Fusion A10 series of processors featuring the Radeon 7000 Series graphics processors (rebranded Northern Islands VLIW-4 parts with Southern Islands UVD engine).
Its a good time to buy AMD (currently 6.77 – 6.90 on the NYSE)…