Tuesday , January 26 2021

AMD Radeon RX Vega 64 Fluid Cooling Video Card Review: Alternative Video / Unexpected Video Cards

NVIDIA, one after another, launches the GeForce 20 accelerators, gamers' thoughts have caught track racing in real time, and many have a reasonable question: what does AMD have? Fortunately for the supporters of the Radeon brand and NVIDIA critics, the red team is ready to return to the big allies. The latest AMD video card will soon fall into hands, based on the first discrete GPU, made at a rate of 7 nm. The seventh of February is the day that we will be able to publish the results of the Radeon VII tests.

However, the "seven" is just a sign that AMD does not give up, but the company is not yet ready to deliver a NVIDIA campaign in every aspect. Radeon VII will be at the recommended price of $ 699 and will compete with the GeForce RTX 2080. But the prospect for more affordable gaming graphics cards with Vega 20 chips is a "lightweight" configuration ( in more detail, have even collected more than the Radeon VII, as it has not yet fully equipped a GPU). The production of Radeon VII components – the graphic processor and the HBM2 memory conferences – is expensive, AMD will not receive much revenue from the leading sales and it is unlikely to agree to lose money in order replace Radeon RX Vega 56 and Vega 64 quickly. Therefore, the accelerators will be the first generation Vega chips, even after the release of the Radeon VII, will continue to be in service, and AMD does not have a timely response to the NVIDIA latest.

Of course, we mean GeForce RTX 2060. The first video cards on Turing chips do not threaten the Radeon RX Vega jobs, because the GeForce RTX 2080 and RTX 2080 Ti belong to a completely different class – faster and even more so in price. GeForce RTX 2070 came in games with only a relatively fast racing of the GeForce GTX 1080, and this is already a big problem for Vega 64. But the real horrible enemy of Vega models was GeForce RTX 2060: at prices from $ 349, the youngest Turing was walking around Radeon RX's Vega 56 gaming tests, which cost at least $ 499 in early January, and is too close in speed to & # 39; r Vega 64, so it would still be bought for $ 599.

The only thing that AMD has left to do in such a situation is to cut prices. As a result, several Radeon RX Vega 64 modifications now occupy the same price gap with the GeForce RTX 2070, and the Vega 56 is closer to GeForce RTX 2060. And here is how & # 39; n about the subject of the review: the whole Vega family price has not avoided the Radeon RX Vega 64 Cooling fluid. Moreover, among all the types, the Vega 64 version with an unexpectedly built LSS became one of the most attractive. Let's see how good it is.

⇡ #Specifications, prices

As separate GPU producers have mastered the 14/16 nm technology, AMD has not developed so many new chips for video cards and it's trying to use each one in several models of gaming accelerators. As well as the Limited Edition Radeon RX Vega 64, which is different to the blackline, the Vega 64 reference is only for a glossy metal case, the company released five devices based on the Vega 10 graphics processor: the Radeon RX Vega 56, which is familiar with Vega 64, and two modifications of the Vega Frontier Edition (boards with 16 GB of RAM) – with air cooler or CBO – and finally , Vega 64 Fluid cools.

In its large family, the Radeon RX Vega 64 LC has the highest clock speed: GPU Boost Clock is 1677 MHz, while the Vega 64 cooling cooled samples are satisfied with a frequency of 1546 MHz. It should be noted again that the parameters specified in the specifications of any Radeon RX Vega models are slightly similar to the actual GPU frequency. Although AMD and NVIDIA use common terminology, Boost Club in GeForce video cards mean the average frequency in typical tasks, and in Vega – the largest frequency (also in typical tasks). Yet there is no other revision of the Vega 64, including well-known overcrowding champions products – PowerColor and SAPPHIRE, requesting frequencies such as Radeon RX Vega 64 LC.

But we certainly believe in the value of the table's power table, the leading Vega is 345 W. Only to find out what kind of magic allows the Radeon RX Vega 64 LC mini radiator to dispose of heat flow tremendous.

Maker AMD
Model Radeon RX Vega 56 Radeon RX Vega 64 Radeon RX Vega 64 Fluid cool Frontier Radeon RX Vega Edition Frontier Edition Radeon RX Vega Chilled Fluid
Graphic Processor
Name Vega 10 XL Vega 10 XT Vega 10 XT Vega 10 XT Vega 10 XT
Microarchitecture GCN 1.4 GCN 1.4 GCN 1.4 GCN 1.4 GCN 1.4
Technology of the process, nm 14 nm FinFET 14 nm FinFET 14 nm FinFET 14 nm FinFET 14 nm FinFET
Number of translators, million 12,500 12,500 12,500 12,500 12,500
Clock Frequency, MHz: Base Clock / Boost Clock 1156/1471 1247/1546 1406/1677 1382/1600 1382/1600
The number of ALU shader 3584 4096 4096 4096 4096
The number of blocks covers texture 256 256 256 256 256
ROP number 64 64 64 64 64
Narrow bus, a bit 2048 2048 2048 2048 2048
Chips type Hbm2 Hbm2 Hbm2 Hbm2 Hbm2
Clock frequency, MHz (bandwidth per link, Mbps) 800 (1600) 945 (1890) 945 (1890) 945 (1890) 945 (1890)
Volume, MB 8096 8096 8096 16192 16192
Bus I / O PCI Express 3.0 x16 PCI Express 3.0 x16 PCI Express 3.0 x16 PCI Express 3.0 x16 PCI Express 3.0 x16
Top performance FP32, GFLOPS (based on the maximum prescribed frequency) 10544 12665 13738 13107 13107
Performance FP32 / FP64 1/16 1/16 1/16 1/16 1/16
Bandwidth RAM, GB / s 410 484 484 484 484
Output image
Display interfaces HDMI 2.0, DisplayPort 1.4 HDMI 2.0, DisplayPort 1.4 HDMI 2.0, DisplayPort 1.4 HDMI 2.0, DisplayPort 1.4 HDMI 2.0, DisplayPort 1.4
TDP, W 210 295 345 <300 350
Retail price (USA, excluding tax), $ O 339 (newegg.com) O 399 (newegg.com) O 599 (amazon.com) 999 (recommended at discharge) 1499 (recommended at discharge)
Retail price (Russia), rubbing. O 26,563 (market.yandex.ru) O 35 940 (market.yandex.ru) O 39,229 (market.yandex.ru) ND ND

Initially, AMD considered the Radeon RX Vega 64 underwater as an enthusiastic suggestion that was willing to give a great deal of money for the higher frequency of the clock: the basic version of the Vega 64 was for sale at the recommended cost of $ 499, and the Vega 64 LC priced for $ 200 more expensive. But the modern market for high performance graphics cards looks quite different.

The Radeon RX Vega 64 lowest band price limit is now around $ 399, while GeForce RTX 2070 costs at least $ 499. The last wave of discounts has not yet reached the Russian market, but in the ruble is Vega 64 has ceased to be more expensive than RTX 2070. Depending on the specific change, both devices sell between 35-49,000 rubles. But most importantly, Vega 64 LC (39-48 thousand) is now in this range – the only video card with a pre-set liquid cooling system that can be purchased for such money.

⇡ #Construction

So far, a significant part of all Radeon RX Vega 64, commercially available video cards, is a reference model produced by SAPPHIRE. AMD was ready for the fact that partners would not start the original design manufacturing devices, and it was decided not to take on the design of reference samples. As a result, the Radeon RX Vega 56 and Vega 64 received a circuit board with a highly efficient and efficient efficient voltage regulator that incorporates a radiator with an evaporation chamber and a radial fan.

The Rgaon Vega 64 LC has a lot of similarities with the usual Vega 64 referral card, but due to its appearance and quality of manufacturing, this is clearly a higher-level product. The printed circuit board and the cooling system components have been enclosed in a whole-metal box, with the entire front part of the body having to make a thick aluminum sheet. AMD adopted the love for an NVIDIA metal, but, unlike the Founder Edition video cards, a right angle dominates the Radeon RX Vega 64 LC design, and a rough texture is on the surface. The few parts of a body made of plastic are Radeon and a transparent red corner: when the board gets power, they glow brightly.

Changing the air cooler to the LSS did not almost affect the device's dimensions, although the case had to do a few millimeters longer and broader than the standard reference model to hide The edge of the printed circuit board at the junction of metal plates.

But of course, the most interesting thing about the Radeon RX Vega is 64 LC and the liquid cooling system. Water is not the first time to find the application in the "red" cards: after the Radeon R9 295X2, Radeon R9 Fury X, and then the Radeon Pro Duo based on both Fiji chips, AMD had enough experience to design a real and resilient solution. In fact, the Radeon RX Vega 64 LC is considered very good.

The LSS components are made specially by CoolerMaster – it does not sell anything in retail. The system works as follows. First, the fluid from the external radiator enters the pump with an integrated water block – the copper base of this part is pressed against the graphics processor slips and memory services HBM2. But the metal frame, which almost the entire area of ​​the PCB has hidden, except for the GPU and power connectors, is also part of the circuit cooling: on the outside it has a shaped cover, the fluid flow of the pump has to heat by the graphic processor.

This is exactly what a cool video video cooling scheme with the Radeon RX Vega 64 LC should look like, because these VRM components also need better heat disipers. But impact-makers, drivers, capacitors and cocktails can operate at higher temperatures than GPU and HBM2 chips, so they received the last priority.

A typical LSS has been designed with a factory refill (CLLC – Closed Liquid Oil), which has been installed on central processors, for a service life of about five years. Due to the fact that the cooler gradually escapes the circuit through the poles of the associated pipes and is replaced by the air, the internal foam dries in the pump – and the mechanics worn fast. In order to prevent this problem, AMD and CoolerMaster use pipes with internal teflon cover (be careful with bugs!) And most importantly, they integrate the LSS fluid backup – This is a plastic box that occupies the right part of the space under the casing. The tank has to connect to a single tube into the pump, and on the other hand it has an air valve – this compensates for the slow loss of a cooler from the main circuit .

The cooling fee closes compact radiators with an individual 120 mm fan. Although the Vega 64 LC had a very high heat heat, AMD did not make the radiator thicker than in the Radeon R9 Fury X (38 mm). In addition, the expansion cavity was removed, which sometimes complicates the installation of seats for case supporters, because a separate tank is already under the cover of the video card. But the supporter is the same product Nidec Servo, known under the brand name Scythe Gentle Typhoon. The version for Fury X and Vega 64 LC (D1225C12B7ZP) has a ring that connects the blades and can accelerate to 3000 rpm. But with a 1200 rev / min rotation speed, Vega 64 LC even suffers under a heavy load, it is almost unacceptable.

Circuit board

At the root of each reference version of Vega accelerators, whether they are Vega 56, Vega 64 or Vega 64 LC, the same printed circuit board is lying. Due to the fact that the Vega 10 graphics processor and two hBM2 memory packs have tied together with a silicone substrate, the front side of the PCB is full of space. The PCB shortened manufacturer could, as made in Radeon R9 Fury X, so that the Vega 64 LC would become synonymous, but then we would have to put & The best of the cooling tank, and in standard versions, the air cooling system still determines the dimensions.

VRM occupies the proportion of the lion from the PCB area. The voltage regulator contains thirteen – dozen phases for the graphic processor and one for HBM2 chip. In order to simplify the control logic in the GPU power plan and collect with the eight-phase PWM controller (IR35217 International Rectifier), AMD uses dual transitors in the same field – one chip for each pair of MOSFET .

In most cases of Vega 64, the gaps between the GPU and HBM2 chips are filled with an epoxy compound

Additional power is given to the board through two eight pin connectors. Along with PCI Express slot power lines, they provide a graded power of 375 watts to the board. Normally, this number will say nothing about the actual energy use, but not in the case of Radeon RX Vega 64 LC, as we can see soon. LEDs adjacent to the power connectors form a red indicator strip that identifies the load on the GPU. With the help of a dip switch, a hole is made in the shield on the back of the PCB, you can turn off the LED or change their color to blue.

No high-performance graphics card on AMD chips can do so without UEFI chips, but for Vega it is not just in case of unsuccessful flashing: a second copy of the firmware restricts the power, and therefore the frequency and heat of graphic processor.

This is a PCB from the Radeon RX Vega 64 standard version – we did not disable the Vega 64 LC valuable to the ground

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