AMD Launches $1,500 Radeon Pro Duo Graphics Card for VR Content Creation

AMD Launches $1,500 Radeon Pro Duo Graphics Card for VR Content Creation
  • The dual-GPU card is based on AMD's Fiji architecture.
  • Targeted at VR developers but also suitable for ultra-high-end gaming.
  • Consumes up to 350W and uses a dedicated closed-loop liquid cooler.
AMD has formally launched the Radeon Pro Duo graphics card just over a month after announcing it at the 2016 Game Developers Conference in March. The massive dual-GPU card is based on AMD's Fiji architecture but rather than gaming, is being targeted at professional VR content creators. The company believes that VR content is going to become a necessary part of fields as diverse as journalism and medicine, in addition to pure entertainment.

The new Radeon Pro Duo is an evolved version of the dual-Fiji gaming card first teased at AMD's Radeon R9 Fury launch event in June 2015. It sits below AMD's FirePro line but will receive custom drivers with additional validations for professional software, setting it apart from ordinary gaming cards. The card costs $1,500 (approximately Rs. 99,780 before taxes and duties).

The Fiji architecture, as seen in the Radeon R9 Fury series, is most notable for its use of high-density high-bandwidth 3D stacked memory on the same die as the GPU itself. This card features 8GB of HBM RAM and can achieve 16.38 Teraflops of throughput. The GPUs are fabricated on the older 28nm process and are clocked at 1GHz each.

The Radeon Pro Duo features three DisplayPort outputs and one HDMI port for compatibility with VR systems including the Oculus Rift and HTC Vive. consumes 350W of power and will use a dedicated closed-loop liquid cooler, similar to the thermal solution developed for the Radeon R9 Fury X.

A consumer dual-Fiji graphics card might be in the pipeline, but AMD's next-generation Polaris architecture rollout is rumoured to be right around the corner, casting doubt on what sense such a move would make. If used for gaming, AMD says the Radeon Pro Duo is 1.5 times faster than the Nvidia GeForce GTX Titan X.

AMD claimed last month that it has an 83 percent market share in personal VR systems. It also has partnerships with Oculus, HTC, Sulon, and others to improve compatibility with software under development.

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Jamshed Avari has been working in tech journalism as a writer, editor and reviewer for over 13 years. He has reviewed hundreds of products ranging from smartphones and tablets to PC components and accessories, and has also written guides, feature articles, news and analyses. Going beyond simple ratings and specifications, he digs deep into how emerging products and services affect actual users, and what marks they leave on our cultural landscape. He's happiest when something new comes ...More

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