Home Gaming AMD takes aim at Nvidia

AMD takes aim at Nvidia

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REdvsGreen

Nvidia’s GTX 970 is still the best-performing video card you can get for your money. The insane price-to-performance ratio on the thing means you get the highest frame-rates and best visuals for your buck. But there’s also a problem. NVidia somewhat misrepresented their card.

Instead of being a bona fide 4GB card, the memory architecture is split; a slower, half-gig pool supplements the card’s main memory allotment of 3.5GB. Yes, technically it’s a 4GB card, but an eighth of that memory is slower than Darryn trying to comprehend how magnets work.

Nvidia also issued a bit of misinformation in its original spec sheets – claiming that the 970 had more ROPs and more L2 cache than the card actually possessed.

“NVIDIA says this was an error in the reviewer’s guide and a misunderstanding between the engineering team and the technical PR team on how the architecture itself functioned,” says PC Perspective. “That means the GTX 970 has 56 ROPs and 1792 KB of L2 cache compared to 64 ROPs and 2048 KB of L2 cache for the GTX 980.”

The company has admitted to the faux pas, and is doing everything it can to help. They’re releasing a new set of drivers to help tune memory allocation, and will also be aiding those who’re looking for a refund or exchange.

“I totally get why so many people are upset,” says NVIDIA employee Peter S on the GeForce forums (before it was edited). “We messed up some of the stats on the reviewer kit and we didn’t properly explain the memory architecture. I realize a lot of you guys rely on product reviews to make purchase decisions and we let you down.

It sucks because we’re really proud of this thing. The GTX970 is an amazing card and I genuinely believe it’s the best card for the money that you can buy. We’re working on a driver update that will tune what’s allocated where in memory to further improve performance.”

They’re doing the right thing – but that hasn’t stopped AMD from taking a few potshots. Check out this cheeky ad for the company’s R9 290 card, as tweeted by AMD’s Head of global technical marketing, Robert Hallock.

cheekyAMD

Them be fighting words.

Last Updated: January 29, 2015

98 Comments

  1. Ghost In The Rift

    January 29, 2015 at 08:05

    I like the competition these guys have, cant wait to see what AMD has in store, but that red Hulk, epic..XD

    Reply

  2. Hammersteyn

    January 29, 2015 at 08:08

    • Blood Emperor Trevor

      January 29, 2015 at 08:14

      Fake, that should be the AMD logo. 😉

      Reply

      • Hammersteyn

        January 29, 2015 at 08:15

        Lies!

        Reply

        • Exalted Overlord Geoffrey Tim

          January 29, 2015 at 08:16

          Nowaiz. AMD definitely runs hotter. The Maxwell cards (like the 970) are insanely energy efficient.

          Reply

        • Raptor Rants A Lot:Original #7

          January 29, 2015 at 08:20

          The AMD cards run at something like 90degrees….#JustSaying

          Reply

          • Lord Chaos

            January 29, 2015 at 08:23

            Hmm, gonna have to check this again.

            All I know is in summer my PC runs perfect, and in the cold winter it heats up the room nicely.

          • Admiral Chief

            January 29, 2015 at 08:24

            Lies, mine runs at 65 (or less I think)

          • Captain JJ Saga

            January 29, 2015 at 08:25

            When it’s off, right? Trolololoo
            (My AMD never runs very hot, even in summer)

          • Admiral Chief

            January 29, 2015 at 08:25

            OFF THE CHAINS yes

          • Raptor Rants A Lot:Original #7

            January 29, 2015 at 08:26

            I’m talking about the R9290x

          • Admiral Chief

            January 29, 2015 at 08:31

            You said cards, as in plural

          • Raptor Rants A Lot:Original #7

            January 29, 2015 at 08:31

            There are many 9290’s in this world

          • Admiral Chief

            January 29, 2015 at 08:32

            There is a “but this one is mine” joke in there somewhere

          • Raptor Rants A Lot:Original #7

            January 29, 2015 at 08:33

            Hahahahahahahhahahaha

          • Captain JJ Saga

            January 29, 2015 at 08:35

            LIES!!!

          • Raptor Rants A Lot:Original #7

            January 29, 2015 at 08:37

            And they are contributing to global warming

          • Captain JJ Saga

            January 29, 2015 at 08:38

            Like Rince’s vapour.

          • Lord Chaos

            January 29, 2015 at 08:38

            And still my monthly electricity barely goes over R500.

          • Admiral Chief

            January 29, 2015 at 08:45

            HOW DO YOU DO THIS??? Bastards are raping my bank balance.

          • Lord Chaos

            January 29, 2015 at 08:48

            A light is only turned on if it’s really needed.

          • HvR

            January 29, 2015 at 08:49

            He is probably sitting there all alone in a cold bath with a candle.

          • Lord Chaos

            January 29, 2015 at 08:51

            You forgot the wine. To keep me warm…

          • Raptor Rants A Lot:Original #7

            January 29, 2015 at 08:48

            HOW????? TEACH ME!!!!

          • Lord Chaos

            January 29, 2015 at 08:49

            1) Run AMD.
            2) Get the OCD out of your wife where they have to switch every light in the house on

          • Raptor Rants A Lot:Original #7

            January 29, 2015 at 08:51

            1) nVidia is more power efficient than the AMD’s
            2) I’m the compulsive light switcher on-erer

          • Lord Chaos

            January 29, 2015 at 08:55

            I also run the Asus EPU, so the entire PC is power regulated. When not playing games the cpu barely does 1w/h

          • Raptor Rants A Lot:Original #7

            January 29, 2015 at 08:56

            Ah. I should really start using my Gigabyte variant

          • Captain JJ Saga

            January 29, 2015 at 08:51

            We’re only two people in our house, but we do about R400

          • Raptor Rants A Lot:Original #7

            January 29, 2015 at 08:52

            2 people and we do like R800 0_o

          • Captain JJ Saga

            January 29, 2015 at 08:54

            Solar geyser helps. And I’m at work from 7 to 6/8, so there’s nothing to use the power most of the day.

          • Raptor Rants A Lot:Original #7

            January 29, 2015 at 08:55

            I see

          • Spaffy

            January 29, 2015 at 08:51

            fek.

          • Hammersteyn

            January 29, 2015 at 08:43

            Same here

          • HairyEwok

            January 29, 2015 at 09:25

            Yeah I have a GTX 780 TwinFrzr and that beast runs at 55-65 degrees under load. That is amazing temps compared to a AMD going red hot between 80-95 degrees under load.

          • Raptor Rants A Lot:Original #7

            January 29, 2015 at 09:43

            Sheesh that’s not bad

          • Lothy

            January 29, 2015 at 11:55

            LOL! kak!
            Under full load my 7970 runs at 60C. Nvidia run hotter and chew more juice.
            Team red all the way

      • Captain JJ Saga

        January 29, 2015 at 08:23

        We like them hot, otherwise where’s the excitement?

        Reply

        • Lord Chaos

          January 29, 2015 at 08:24

          Nothing better than a hot red head. 😛

          Reply

          • Admiral Chief

            January 29, 2015 at 08:25

            Ok now that is funny! Since Llew is married to a red head, but he supports green…

          • Lord Chaos

            January 29, 2015 at 08:26

            Must be jealousy…

          • Raptor Rants A Lot:Original #7

            January 29, 2015 at 08:26

            Best of both worlds 🙂

            Red in the bed, green in the game!

          • Captain JJ Saga

            January 29, 2015 at 08:28

            I don’t know about green in the game. Somehow I don’t find a leaf blower as terrifying as a flame thrower.

          • Admiral Chief

            January 29, 2015 at 08:30

            BWAAAAAAAAAAAAHAHAHAHAHAHAHHAHAHA

          • Raptor Rants A Lot:Original #7

            January 29, 2015 at 08:32

          • Captain JJ Saga

            January 29, 2015 at 08:35

            Is that from Pokemon?
            If it is I’m giving you an upvote because I’m not very knowledgeable about the characters and stuff, and I assume this thing is awesome. 🙂

          • Raptor Rants A Lot:Original #7

            January 29, 2015 at 08:37

            Yes it is 🙂

          • Lord Chaos

            January 29, 2015 at 08:40

            Damn, a paper cut vs Damn, my eyes have melted. 😛

          • Raptor Rants A Lot:Original #7

            January 29, 2015 at 08:45

            Paper cutS are far worse bud.

          • Lord Chaos

            January 29, 2015 at 08:48

            Not if you have cats.

          • Raptor Rants A Lot:Original #7

            January 29, 2015 at 08:50

            I do

          • Exalted Overlord Geoffrey Tim

            January 29, 2015 at 08:40

            Green is the colour of your jealousy, bra.
            Red is what you just did to a book because your PC overheated and shutdown.

          • Captain JJ Saga

            January 29, 2015 at 08:44

            I used to only use green, switched to red last year only. I had software clashes on my pc so always had issues with that GeForce Experience. With AMD no problems yet.
            I don’t spend enough time evaluating the hardware aspects, I just go with what suits my budget at the time. Price/Performance.

    • Ottokie

      January 29, 2015 at 08:45

      Guess they pushed this 970 to far.

      Reply

      • Hammersteyn

        January 29, 2015 at 08:51

        Dayum

        Reply

      • Exalted Overlord Geoffrey Tim

        January 29, 2015 at 08:59

        Electrical components are all powered by magical, compressed smoke. When that smoke leaks out, your product no longer works. Sad, but true.

        Reply

        • Captain JJ the crafter

          January 29, 2015 at 09:00

          It’s the magic that makes the difference.

          Reply

        • Raptor Rants A Lot:Original #7

          January 29, 2015 at 09:02

          Also that smoke stinks and leaves its smell around for days once it escapes

          Reply

  3. Raptor Rants A Lot:Original #7

    January 29, 2015 at 08:10

    Heh. Can’t wait till nVidia hits back with “3.5GB is the new 4…. and cheaper…. and faster….”

    Reply

    • Admiral Chief

      January 29, 2015 at 08:18

      Of course it is cheaper, they are saving moolah on that last 500mb

      Reply

      • Raptor Rants A Lot:Original #7

        January 29, 2015 at 08:21

        Still faster and more power efficient too

        Reply

        • Admiral Chief

          January 29, 2015 at 08:24

          Pity about that ghastly green colour 😛

          Reply

          • Raptor Rants A Lot:Original #7

            January 29, 2015 at 08:31

            Lol. Sorry to hear you chose colour over performance 🙂

          • Admiral Chief

            January 29, 2015 at 08:32

            I choose both

          • Lord Chaos

            January 29, 2015 at 08:32

            There’s a very bad joke in there somewhere…

          • Admiral Chief

            January 29, 2015 at 08:32

            Oh snap

          • Raptor Rants A Lot:Original #7

            January 29, 2015 at 08:33

            Darnit! Stepped right in to that

          • Admiral Chief

            January 29, 2015 at 08:34

            For the seventh time it seems

        • RustedFaith

          January 29, 2015 at 10:02

          Faster than what ?

          Reply

          • Raptor Rants A Lot:Original #7

            January 29, 2015 at 10:48

            Than anything else in its price range

          • RustedFaith

            January 29, 2015 at 11:58

          • Raptor Rants A Lot:Original #7

            January 29, 2015 at 12:33

            Urm? There’s no 970 on there. I see the 960. But we are talking about the 970 in this article. The 970 most definitely beats the R9280 and R9285x

          • RustedFaith

            January 29, 2015 at 12:47

            Oh my bad

            The R9 290x is faster than the 970 at the same price?

          • Raptor Rants A Lot:Original #7

            January 29, 2015 at 14:00

            Unfortunately no. The R9290x performs roughly the same as the 970 (one test the 970 wins, the next test the 9290 wins kind of thing) but costs much more.

            R9290x = Just over R6k

            GTX 970 = Just over R5k

            So there is R1000 differance between the 2 and the 970 is pretty much the same performance as the AMD one.

            http://images.anandtech.com/graphs/graph8568/67897.png

  4. Blood Emperor Trevor

    January 29, 2015 at 08:13

    I love advertising like that, makes it interesting.

    Never forget BMW’s “the car that beats the bends”.

    Reply

  5. Gavin Mannion

    January 29, 2015 at 08:14

    “We messed up some of the stats on the reviewer kit “, isn’t it a bit worrying that all the tech journo’s in the world just believed the reviewer kit until this was noticed by a user? Or did I miss something here

    Reply

    • Exalted Overlord Geoffrey Tim

      January 29, 2015 at 08:15

      No, i think you’ve got it – but it’s honestly a bit of a hard thing to test unless you have the equipment. The card is a beast, offering incredible performance for the money. When benchmarking – unless you’re specifically trying to benchmark the last half a gig – you likely wouldn’t notice.

      Reply

      • Hammersteyn

        January 29, 2015 at 08:16

        So they didn’t benchmark it on Crisys?

        Reply

        • Exalted Overlord Geoffrey Tim

          January 29, 2015 at 08:17

          They did – but at 4K, with everything turned up to max, it’ll run slower – which /seemed/ a natural, organic thing – not a result of fewer rops, lower cache and a crippled half gig of memory.

          Reply

  6. Admiral Chief

    January 29, 2015 at 08:19

    Bwahahahaha, because 4=4

    Reply

  7. AceZero911

    January 29, 2015 at 08:20

    So basically once the memory allocation has been tuned it will outperform the amd cards even more…

    Reply

  8. Ross Woofels Mason

    January 29, 2015 at 08:21

    Kekekeke, I know Nvidia cards generally outdo their Radeon counterparts but I can’t help but have a soft spot for team red =p

    Reply

  9. Mossel

    January 29, 2015 at 08:31

    If NVidia calls it 4gb it is 4gb! 2 +2 = 5!

    Reply

  10. Ottokie

    January 29, 2015 at 08:35

    • Raptor Rants A Lot:Original #7

      January 29, 2015 at 08:36

      *sigh* Metronome. You never know what you’ll get

      Reply

  11. Raptor Rants A Lot:Original #7

    January 29, 2015 at 08:36

    You know what gets me? This is the best performing card in its price range… Why complain? I mean, I get it if you’re an enthusiast who really cares about these specs, but if you are, you would be sitting with a 980. Not a 970… So again, why are people complaining? They are still getting the best performance / price / power efficiency

    Reply

    • Tosh MA

      January 29, 2015 at 08:54

      This is something I keep thinking about too. This hasn’t put me off wanting the 970 any more. If I could afford one, I’d buy one. Now.

      Reply

    • Weanerdog

      January 29, 2015 at 09:47

      Because bigger numbers are better, you have been taught that through years of advertising. The actual performance is irrelevant. And if you think that a lower price is better it is not, you are just buying an inferior product like one that doesn’t have all its bits working, again regardless of performance. Nothing like the smell of consumerism in the morning.

      Reply

      • Raptor Rants A Lot:Original #7

        January 29, 2015 at 09:51

        [insert meme]

        Too well written. Not sure if serious… or… sarcasm…

        Reply

        • Weanerdog

          January 29, 2015 at 16:50

          It started off as sarcasm and then I realized it was the truth.

          Reply

  12. FSR

    January 29, 2015 at 08:57

    “slower than Darryn trying to comprehend how magnets work.” You and me both man…

    Reply

  13. b1nd3r

    January 29, 2015 at 11:14

    AMD = Stormtrooper PEW PEW

    Reply

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