Advanced Micro Devices Inc. (NASDAQ: AMD) has had a good start to 2017 with its Ryzen processor lineup being generally well received and hype and rumors surrounding its upcoming Vega GPU architecture pointing to an impressive release in the making. However, a lot of this can also be attributed to AMD’s inability to keep a lid on existing developments at any level of its product lines compared to its competitor, Nvidia which tends to do a better job keeping the media guessing. This also stands true for the RX 500 lineup
AMD’s upcoming RX 500 series has been outed repeatedly by partners and retailers either by accident or simply in a bid to canvas sales or hype ahead of their formal launch. Thanks to the number of leaks, one can more or less wager a very good guess when it comes to the pricing of the RX 500 series GPUs that start from the low-end RX 550 2gb and extend to the RX 580 8GB based on currently available information.
The RX 500 series is expected to be a Polaris refresh instead of Vega-based GPUs, something that AMD has kept tightly under wraps until now. The new lineup is expected to be a complete refresh of the Polaris architecture while employing a similar naming formula. This will bring a Low Plus Power (LPP) manufacturing process in tow as well as an increase in performance gain due to higher base clocks for the GPU. AMD AIB board partners such as Asus, Sapphire and MSI have already pushed out their respective variants of the RX 500 series. The RX 550 is a relatively new entrant in the market and comes with 2gb and 4gb variants; on the other hand, the RX 570 and 580 come with the same amount of VRAM as their predecessors.
Retailers are pushing out the RX 550 for $105 and the RX 570 ranges between $190 to $255 based on retailer pricing and the RX 580 goes between $250 to $325 depending on the retailer and the memory config. With most retailers pushing an April 10th availability date, that gives a rather limited timeframe for AMD to unveil its Polaris refresh offerings should the given date be correct.
The real offering in 2017 however comes once AMD releases Vega. And while the RX 500 series should be a good compromise for people holding out to buy or budget gamers, with Nvidia Corp. (NASDAQ:NVDA)’s GTX 1080TI already out and offering impressive gains on the previous incumbent GTX Titan X Pascal and GTX 1080, AMD’s Vega lineup needs to be pushed out sooner rather than later to avoid haemorrhaging further enthusiast market share throughout 2017.