AMD unveils Radeon Pro Duo Polaris refresh
April 25, 2017 | 11:33
AMD has officially announced a Polaris refresh for its Radeon Pro Duo, a dual-GPU graphics card aimed firmly at the professional market and with 8K resolution workloads in mind.
Designed around the company's Radeon Pro WX 7100 workstation graphics card, the Radeon Pro Duo is effectively two of the former sandwiched together with a few compromises to prevent the thing from catching fire. 'Today's professional workflows continue to increase in complexity, often demanding that creators switch between a wide variety of applications to progress their work, pausing efforts in one application while computing resources are focused on another. We designed the Radeon Pro Duo to eliminate those constraints, empowering professionals to multi-task without compromise, dedicating GPU resources where and how they need them,' claimed AMD's Ogi Brkic of the design. 'It's a continuation of our promise for Radeon Pro: to provide greater choice in how professionals practice their craft, enabling superior multi-tasking, accelerated applications, and powerful solutions for advanced workloads like VR.'
The card itself offers a total of 72 compute units for 4,608 stream processors, evenly split between the two Polaris-architecture GPUs, and 32GB of GDDR5 memory. Combined, the processors offer a claimed 11.45 TFLOPS (trillion floating-point operations per second) of single-precision compute performance and twice the geometry throughput of the single-GPU Radeon WX 7100. Compared to the Fiji-based Radeon Pro Duo of 2016, though, it's something of a downgrade: a drop in the number of compute units has led to a reduction in performance from 16 TFLOPS to 11.45 TFLOPS, though the power draw has also been slashed from 350W to 250W.
In an apparent attempt to compensate for the loss in absolute performance over last year's equivalent, AMD is also cutting the price. Where the Fiji Radeon Pro Duo hit the market at a US recommended retail price of $1,499 (around £1,171 excluding taxes), the new Polaris model will be available for $999 (around £780 excluding taxes) when it becomes available in late May. Its key selling points, reduced price aside, will be its support for running four 4K-resolution displays or a single 8K display at 60Hz.